Congressman Faleomavaega announced today that thanks to your support and prayers he will represent your interests as the 3rd highest-ranking Democrat on the House Resources Committee which has jurisdiction for American Samoa.
“Congress is built on seniority,” Faleomavaega said. “All freshman, or new Members of Congress, start at the bottom and must wait years to work their way to the top of a Committee. This includes Republicans, too. But thanks to the support you have shown for me in the past nine elections, American Samoa now has seniority in Congress and on the Resources Committee.”
“The Resources Committee is made up of five subcommittees including 1) Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife and Oceans; 2) Energy & Mineral Resources; 3) Forests and Forest Health; 4) National Parks, Recreation and Public Lands; and 5) Water and Power. I will also serve on the Fisheries and Energy Subcommittees.”
“The rules of Congress require all Members to serve on committees. This is because every Member of Congress represents his State or Territory and also the United States. In my case,” the Congressman said, “I represent the people of American Samoa and I also represent the United States on behalf of the people of American Samoa. My committee assignments include service on the Resources, International Relations, and Small Business Committees, and their Subcommittees.”
“The Committee on Resources is responsible for all issues involving the insular possessions of the United States generally. The insular possessions include American Samoa, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), and the Federated States of the Marshall Islands (FSM).”
“My good friend, Congressman Richard Pombo, a Republican from California, is the Chairman of the House Committee on Resources. My good friend, Congressman Nick Rahall, a Democrat from West Virginia, is the Ranking or most senior Democratic member of the Committee.”
“I am pleased to represent American Samoa’s interests before the Committee on Resources. Given that American Samoa’s economy is more than 80% dependent, either directly or indirectly, on the tuna fishing and processing industries, I am also pleased to have the opportunity to once again serve on the Fisheries Subcommittee,” Congressman Faleomavaega said. “The Fisheries Subcommittee has responsibility for commercial fisheries, international fisheries agreements, aquaculture, seafood safety and fisheries promotion.”
“The Fisheries Subcommittee also works with the National Sea Grant College program. It was as a result of my service on the Fisheries Subcommittee that we were able to successfully establish a Sea Grant presence and an aquaculture project in American Samoa and I am hopeful that during the 109th Congress there will be new opportunities to expand our Sea Grant presence.”
“During the 109th Congress, I will also serve as a Member of the Energy Subcommittee. The Energy Subcommittee deals with issues involving oil and gas resources, petroleum conservation, the environment, conservation and other matters important to our nation and also to American Samoa. At this time, I am working to include an insular energy provision in any Energy legislation that may be introduced this year.” “As the 109th Congress begins, I want to once more express my thanks to the people of American Samoa for their support and prayers and confidence. Together we are making a difference and, as always, your needs are my priority,” the Congressman concluded.