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Gov issues memo “reminding” cabinet of ASG cash handling policies

Gov. Lemanu P.S. Mauga
Employees receiving cash must provide a receipt and deposit cash daily

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — In an Apr. 24 memorandum, Gov. Lemanu P. S. Mauga reminded cabinet members of the government policy pertaining to cash handling and daily deposits, but no explanation was available from the Governor’s Office as to the reason behind his new directive.

In the memo, the governor points out that ASG departments, agencies, and offices that collect cash payments on behalf of ASG “are reminded to comply with the following practices in order to assure proper control of ASG cash assets.”

“When collecting cash, ASG employees receiving cash must provide a receipt for the cash and account for all cash received,” he said, adding that all cash collected must be deposited daily with Treasury.

“Cash is never to be held by the Department or spent on Department expenses,” the governor declared. “All monies collected must be deposited with Treasury in the same form as collected.”

Lemanu made clear in his directive that: “ASG employees are not to substitute personal checks for cash collected or cash checks from the cash collected.”

“ASG employees should not take the money home or store it at the Department offices after hours. Funds must be accounted for and transferred to Treasury on the day they are received,” Lemanu said.

Samoa News notes that “Unannounced cash count” audits conducted by the Territorial Audit Office at some  Executive Branch offices and departments in the past, have cited the issues raised by the governor.

And the TAO audits cited in their reports provisions of the ASG Cash Receipt Policy Manual, under Cash Receipting for all Departments, that: “All deposits should be made daily and intact — no cash should be retained or expended.”

In April of last year, the governor issued a directive setting up the policy for a “Petty Cash” system for ASG agencies, with approval from the ASG Treasurer.

“The Treasurer may approve a department or agency for up to $2,000 in petty cash funds, based on written justification from the requesting department or agency for the requested amount,” Lemanu said at the time.  (See Samoa News online May 08, 2022 for details.)