In an effort to reduce outstanding LBJ Medical Center debts, Sen. Laolagi F.S. Vaeao has moved to repeal a current law pertaining to the hospital’s $5 million loan made more than 10 years ago to pay off long-outstanding debts at the time.
During a Senate committee hearing late last month, ASG deputy treasurer Tina Va’a told senators that LBJ owes ASG a total of $6.78 million — which includes a $5 million loan that the government made in 2003 on behalf of LBJ. However, the loan is still carried on Treasury Department books until there is a new law enacted to repeal it.
Even before the hearing, Laolagi was already working on drafting legislation to repeal the $5 million loan law. “I keep getting reports from the government about this $5 million loan owed by the LBJ and it’s still not written off until a law is passed to repeal it,” he told Samoa News after the bill was introduced yesterday in the Senate.
“And this has become a problem where ASG keep claiming that there is this outstanding $5 million debt and it’s probably the reason the ASG Treasury Department is not giving LBJ all of the revenue collected from the 2% wage tax as well as the delay in giving the hospital the quarterly payments of ASG subsidy for the hospital,” he said.