27 Jun 2006

American Samoa Government threatens legal action to get electricity charges cut

7:19 pm on 27 June 2006

American Samoa's Senate has served notice to the American Samoa Power Authority that it will seek legal action if necessary to get ASPA to reduce its electricity rates.

The Senate has told ASPA that the lack of response from the authority to a Senate request last year to lower power rates shows lack of concern by ASPA.

That report called for the electrical base rate to be lowered by five cents per kilowatt hour.

The Senate found that ASPA's Electrical division was consistently realising an average profit of 2.2 million US dollars for the last five years and said that a rebate should be passed on to consumers.

It is asking that the residential rate be lowered by nine cents per kilowatt hour and the industrial rate by 7 cents per hour.

Senate President Lolo Letalu Moliga says the business sector has been affected by the reduced purchasing power and some retailers have cited a 20% decrease in sales this year.