|Congressman Faleomavaega announced that he met with
Mr. Richard Hagemeyer, Director of the National Weather Service (NWS) Hawaii
Regional Office, and was informed that President Clinton’s FY01 budget
for American Samoa proposes $985,000 for NWS operations, $577,000 for new
construction, and an increase of one new weather observer.
“I have been working with Mr. Hagemeyer for several years now in
an effort to increase the presence of the weather service in American Samoa,”
said Faleomavaega, “and this is the next increment. For too many
years we had to rely on forecasts from Nandi, Fiji, which because of their
distance from Samoa, were often time inaccurate.”
“Over the last 11 years, we have added eight remote weather sensing
stations, a second meteorologist and an electronic technician. Now,
the President is proposing $577,000 for a complete renovation of our weather
station, including a new building,” continued the Congressman.
“I want to thank NOAA Administrator Dr. D. James Baker, Mr. Hagemeyer,
and others involved in preparing the NWS budget, but we must also recognize
that this support would not have been there without the excellent work
of HC Leilua Akapo Akapo, director of our local weather station, his deputy
director HC Liufau Tanielu, and their staff members. Their work has
resulted in many lives being saved. With our distance from major
forecast centers, they often have to produce forecasts under very adverse
circumstances, and we all owe them a debt of gratitude,” said Faleomavaega.
The proposal for the 2001 fiscal year is an increase of $56,000
in operations funding and $577,000 for construction over FY2001 funding