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Am. Samoa gov submits $456M budget to lawmakers

Fili Sagapolutele, Associated Press

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (AP) -- American Samoa Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga has submitted a budget of more than $456 million to territorial lawmakers, 8 percent less than the last fiscal year.

Moliga says the fiscal 2014 budget is lower than the nearly $496 million budget in fiscal 2013 because of automatic federal budget cuts, plus the ending of some federal disaster programs and stimulus funds.

The territory's government has historically relied heavily on federal grants for operations. But Moliga says the territory will be assuming greater responsibility next year for its own funding.

Moliga says 75 percent of the proposed spending in his budget would be financed by local revenues.

The budget includes $1 million to help college graduates transition to the workforce, to help encourage them to stay in American Samoa.