2 May 2012

Proposals in American Samoa to reinstate subsidy to help local farmers

10:11 am on 2 May 2012

The American Samoa Department of Agriculture is proposing legislation that would reinstate a government subsidy to assist local farmers with expenses associated with farming.

A veteran farmer Taimane Johnson has been calling on the government over the last couple of years to reintroduce the subsidy which helps farmers purchase items such as fertilizer and small equipment to improve their plantations.

The government, which has been faced with budget constraints over the years, dropped its annual budget allocation funding for the farmer's subsidy programme.

Under the programme, the government was subsidising farmers 50 percent for products including fertilizers, authorized chemicals and small farming equipment, such as shovels.

The Agriculture Department Director, Mel Purcell, says written recommendation to reinstate the subsidy was submitted and accepted by the governor Togiola Tulafono.