AMERICAN SAMOA’S FALEOMAVAEGA ANNOUNCES AVAILABILITY OF FEDERAL FUNDINGFOR BULLETPROOF VESTS

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CONGRESSMAN ENI F.H. FALEOMAVAEGA American Samoa U.S. House of Representatives Washington, D.C.

NEWS RELEASE March 16, 2001

AMERICAN SAMOA’S FALEOMAVAEGA ANNOUNCES AVAILABILITY OF FEDERAL FUNDING FOR BULLETPROOF VESTS

Congressman Eni Faleomavaega announced today that he has forwarded to the Commissioner of Public Safety, Te’o Fuavai, information on federal funding to pay for one-half the cost of bulletproof vests for police officers in American Samoa.

"I recently received notice that the Office of Justice Programs in the Department of Justice has made $25 million available to help state and local agencies purchase bulletproof and stab-resistant vests," said Faleomavaega in his letter to the Commissioner.

"The grant program pays fifty percent of the cost of each vest, and one vest can be purchased each year for every officer currently employed.

"Our officers are infrequently subjected to gun-fire, but as you know, domestic violence is on the rise, and responding to those cases can be as dangerous to an officer as any other. Additionally, the ability of the vests to resist penetration by knives and other sharp objects will provide additional security to our officers," continued the Congressman.

"I know funding for equipment is always tight in this department, but I hope we can provide this additional protection to our officers as money becomes available," concluded Faleomavaega.

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