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Community Briefs



Director of Commerce Keniseli Lafaele has announced that the deadline for applications and proposal submissions for FY 2015 funding under the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) Program is tomorrow, August 7, 2014.


The Department of Commerce is the lead agency designated to administer American Samoa’s Community Services Block Grant Program.


Keniseli said all public agencies and nonprofit organizations are welcome to apply.


Application guidelines and instructions on completing and filling a proposal can be obtained at the DOC office on the second floor of the A.P. Lutali Executive Office Building in Utulei.


All submissions — including one original and six copies of the proposal — must be turned in to the DOC’s CSBG Division on or before 4 p.m. tomorrow.




Department of Public Works yesterday informed Rep. Larry Sanitoa that DPW’s “vacuum truck is down, temporarily awaiting parts.”


Sanitoa had requested that DPW use the truck to clean some of the problematic areas of Tualauta county due to high water remaining there following last week’s heavy rain. Sanitoa noted that his concern is that mosquitoes would use such areas for breeding grounds amid local concerns over the Chikungunya fever. (See yesterday’s edition on the Chikungunya fever in the Territory).


DPW also informed Sanitoa that the areas affected in Tualauta would be inserted into their weekly maintenance schedule, as DPW crews have a busy schedule due to the recent flooding and landslide activities.




Several farmers, some of whom supply the federally funded School Lunch Program, lost more than just their crops following the recent heavy rains that caused flooding and millions of dollars worth of damages around the territory.


They have also missed out on collecting money that is needed for them to get by and provide for their families. And while some farmers have had their crops completely wiped out by muddy conditions and landslides, some have been able to salvage some items, which have been donated to the families who were displaced because of last Tuesday’s heavy rains.


The Dept. of Agriculture visited 55 local farms in the Fagaloa area. DOA Director Lealao Purcell publicly announced that of that number, landslides damaged a little fewer than 50%.


He also revealed that five farms in the Pago Pago area were completely destroyed, and added that one farmer—who supplies the School Lunch Program— lost a total of 700 taro. Lealao said this particular farmer will not be ready to supply the School Lunch Program when the new school year starts on Sept. 2 but perhaps he will be able to do so later on in the year.


A meeting between DOA officials and local farmers is set for tomorrow.


Lealao assures the public that his office is doing everything they can to assist the local farmers and help them out in any way.


He concluded, “While the farms were severely damaged, we are thankful that none of the farmers lost their life.”




The Dept. of Public Safety’s Office of Highway Safety said yesterday that there were no crashes or accidents reported during the heavy rainfall last week that claimed the life of one Samoana High School girl and resulted in millions of dollars worth of damage.


Information regarding accidents, crashes, and fatalities are uploaded from the DPS to the Office of Highway Safety, which collects data for the territory, data that is transmitted to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).


To date, a total of 517 crashes and two fatalities have been recorded for the year. A total of 612 crashes involving 1,064 vehicles were recorded for calendar year 2013.