Date: January 30, 1998
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON, D.C. ---- AMERICAN
SAMOA LOOKS GOOD IN FY99 FEDERAL FUNDING
President Clinton is scheduled to release his budget proposal for fiscal year 1999 this coming Monday, February 2nd. Congressman Faleomavaega has been working with the White House and the Department of the Interior in the preparation of American Samoa's portion of the budget, and it is expected the territory will fare well again in the upcoming year with about $23 million for operations, $10 million for construction, and an increase in funding for child health care.
"The agreement reached by Congress in FY96 on territorial funding is continuing to provide our territory with increased funding for capital improvements," said Faleomavaega. "The extra $4 million for the current year is being put to good use by the Tauese Administration, and I am appreciative of the Clinton Administration's recognition of our continued need for this additional funding."
"Last year at this time, the President proposed increasing funding for child health care in the territories to 1.5% of all national funding for this program. This would have placed us at the same per capita funding rate as the states," continued the Congressman. "The majority party in Congress cut this to one-fourth of one percent. The President signed the appropriations bill with funding at this lower level, but noted that this was not equitable funding for the U.S. territories."
Faleomavaega continued, "This year the President is again proposing to substantially increase health care funding for the territories to a total of approximately 1% of all national funds. This isn't parity funding with the states, but it does reflect the President's continued support of children's health care in the territories, and I appreciate this commitment."
"As the details of the budget proposal are released next week, I will provide more specific information," concluded Faleomavaega.