Congressman Faleomavaega announced today that he met with Governor Togiola today to discuss the minimum wage bill now before Congress.
“I was pleased to welcome the Governor to Washington, DC,” Faleomavaega said, “and I appreciate the Governor’s concerns. The Governor was prompted to come to Washington when national media reports claimed that Speaker Pelosi was going to make sure that the proposed wage bill applied to American Samoa.”
“Knowing that this would devastate our local economy, Governor Togiola felt it was important to come to DC and offer his support, and rightly so. In our meeting, I explained that the national media has unfairly portrayed Speaker Pelosi for political purposes and that the truth is she has directed Chairman Miller of the Education and Labor Committee to review American Samoa’s situation.”
“This is why Chairman Miller’s legal counsel joined my meeting yesterday with the tuna canneries. I assured the Governor that I have made contact with the Senate side as well and I intend to meet with Chairman Miller sometime next week per his schedule.”
“As I said yesterday, there is agreement among all of us that American Samoa’s economy would be devastated if mainland minimums are applied and, thus, we are united in our efforts to support Special Industry Committees. However, our Industry Committees need to be strengthened so that our tuna cannery workers and government employees are treated fairly. Our workers deserve to be paid decent wages and we have a moral obligation to make sure that this happens.”
“Therefore, we will continue to work together to balance the interests of our workers and employers. As this matter continues to unfold, the Governor and I will also keep the public informed about the progress we are making,” Faleomavaega concluded.