Congressman Faleomavaega announced today that on May 21, 2008 the House passed by a vote of 263-160 H.R. 6049, the Renewable Energy and Job Creation Act of 2008 which included Faleomavaega’s provision to extend 30A tax credits for American Samoa.
“I thank my colleagues in the House for their support,” Faleomavaega said, “especially Chairman Charles Rangel of the House Committee on Ways and Means which has jurisdiction for all matters pertaining to the tax code.”
“Chairman Rangel’s friendship has been a blessing to our people as he has helped us protect our tuna industry when the Andean countries sought to compete against us. Also, he agreed to include over $20 million in tax rebates and child tax credits which our people are now receiving as a result of the Economic Stimulus bill which was passed by the House to jumpstart our economy.”
“Now he has extended our 30A tax credits for another year which are worth million of dollars to our canneries. I appreciate Chairman Rangel for supporting my requests at every opportunity that is possible.”
“I am hopeful that our tuna canneries will also appreciate Chairman Rangel’s support given that it is difficult for the federal government to extend tax credits to private businesses at a time when our economy is in sharp decline. It is also difficult for our local government to provide our canneries with tax breaks, and continually subsidize their presence in American Samoa.”
“While I want to do everything we can to help our canneries stay in American Samoa for as long as they can, our people also deserve to get something out of the deal—like decent wages, healthcare, and taxes paid to our local government to help clean up the environment surrounding the canneries.”
“When the new owners of StarKist take over, if StarKist successfully sells its operations, I am hopeful that our new corporate partner will want to establish a more equitable relationship with us. In the meantime, I am pleased that the House has agreed to extend 30A tax credits and I am hopeful that the Senate will also support our cause,” Faleomavaega concluded.