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Governor signs into law bill amending pensions for former governors

Gov. Lemanu P.S. Mauga

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Governor Lemanu P. S Mauga has signed into law an act amending former Governors’ monetary allowance of 60 percent to reflect the current salary of the Governor in Office.

The bill was signed into law on December 20, 2022 and confirmed in a letter sent by Governor to Senate President, Tuaolo Manaia Fruean.

 “I have approved Senate Bill 37 - 52, an act amending the former Governors’ monetary allowance to reflect the current salary of the Governor in Office, amending section 4.0110 A.S.C.A.,” said Lemanu.

Each former Governor shall be entitled, for the remainder of his life, to receive from the American Samoa Government a monetary allowance at the rate per annum of 60% of his highest salary during his last year in office of the current governor’s annual salary, payable monthly by the treasurer of American Samoa Government.

The bill outlines that the law being replaced mandates that each former governor is entitled to a monetary allowance of 60 percent based on their salary when in office.

“However, with the fluctuating cost of living it is fitting for this allowance to reflect the current salary of the Governor; and it is proposed that these amendments are to be effective in the next administration in 2026.”

 “However, such allowance is not payable for any period during which such former Governor holds an appointive or elective office or position in or under the American Samoa Government or the Federal Government to which is attached a rate of pay other than a nominal rate.

The term “former Governor” means a person: who, on or after January 1, 1978, shall have held the office of the Governor of the Territory of American Samoa for a full term of at least 4 years; whose service in such office shall have terminated other than by removal pursuant to A.S.C.A., 4.0109 of this chapter; and who does not then currently hold such office.

Funds shall be made available from the Office of the Governor’s budget.

Lemanu said in his letter that this bill would allow them to honor the individuals who formerly held the oath of office as governor and served our Territory faithfully and diligently.

“This bill will go into effect 60 days after the session is closed. The time and effort you and your colleagues have invested considering this very important law is greatly appreciated. May we continue to work together to address the needs of our Territory,” he said.