Chapter 30 - American Samoa Finance Committee

Chapter 30 - American Samoa Finance Committee

11.3001 Scope of application.


This chapter shall apply to all bonds, notes and other evidences of indebtedness of the American Samoa Government(ASG) authorized by the Legislature, unless otherwise provided in the authorizing acts. It shall not apply to indebtedness of any governmental agency or any public corporation.

11.3002 Finance Committee.


The Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, and the Treasurer, or their designee, shall constitute the American Samoa Finance Committee. Two members of the Committee constitute a quorum for taking action.

11.3003 Records - Administrative and clerical assistance.


The Finance Committee shall keep a full and complete public record of the proceedings in appropriate books of record. The Governor shall provide administrative and clerical assistance for the Finance Committee.

11.3004 Rules and regulations - Chairman.


The Finance Committee may make appropriate rules and regulations for the performance of its duties. The Governor, or the Governor

11.3005 Reports of debt management activities.


The Finance Committee shall prepare written reports at least annually summarizing the debt management activities of the Finance Committee, which reports shall be sent to agencies having a direct financial interest in the issuance and sale of bonds by the Committee, and to other persons on written request.

11.3006 Evidences of indebtedness - Issuance - Signature.


Bonds, notes or other evidences of indebtedness of the American Samoa Government shall be issued by the Finance Committee. They may be issued at one time or in a series from time to time. The maturity date of each series shall be determined by the Finance Committee. All evidences of indebtedness shall be signed in the name of the American Samoa Government by the Governor and the Lieutenant Governor. The facsimile signature of said officials is authorized and said evidences of indebtedness may be issued notwithstanding that any of the officials signing them or whose facsimile signature appear on such evidences of indebtedness has ceased to hold office at the time of issue or at the time of delivery to the purchaser. Except for indebtedness incurred for refunding purposes, authorized herein, no indebtedness may be incurred by the Finance Committee, or money borrowed for any reason, without the authorization by the Legislature of the amount and purpose of such indebtedness.

11.3006.1 Evidences of indebtedness - Issuance - Finance Committee, duties and powers.


(a) The Finance Committee shall determine by resolution the amount, date or dates, terms, conditions, covenants, denominations, interest rate or rates(which may be fixed or variable), maturity or maturities, redemption rights, manner of execution and authentication, manner and price of sale and the form of all bonds, notes or other evidences of indebtedness.

(b) Such bonds, notes or other evidences of indebtedness may be payable either to the bearer or to the registered owner. The authorizing resolution may provide for the deposit in trust with any public depository of all or any part of the proceeds of the bonds, notes or other evidences of indebtedness or money set aside for the payment thereof.

(c) The Finance Committee may issue bonds, notes or other evidences of indebtedness to refund at or prior to maturity any outstanding bonds, notes or other evidences of indebtedness or obligation of American Samoa Government, or any agency thereof. Refunding bonds may be secured in the same manner as the obligations being refunded, or in any other manner not precluded by law.

(d) The Finance Committee may obtain bond insurance, letters of credit or other credit support instruments for the purpose of guaranteeing the payment or enhancing the marketability, or both, of any Territorial bonds, notes or other evidences of indebtedness, may contract for the services of trustees, paying agents, underwriters, financial advisors and bond counsel and may authorize the execution and delivery of agreements, promissory notes, and other related instruments.

11.3007 Disposition of proceeds from sale of bonds.


The proceeds of the sale of any bonds shall be used solely for the purposes, including any expense incurred in connection with the issuance and sale of such bonds, specified in the general statute or special act authorizing the issuance of such bonds.

11.3009 Retirement fund quarantine of American Samoa Government refunding bonds.


(a) The American Samoa Government Employees Retirement Fund is authorized by A.S.C.A., Section 7.1444 to undertake, by action of its Board of Trustees, to guarantee the payment of the principal of and interest on bonds issued by the American Samoa finance committee for the purpose of refunding outstanding obligations of American Samoa Government which refunding bonds may be issued in the amount of not to exceed $19,000,000. The payment of amounts due, if any, under such a guarantee will be made out of any assets of the Retirement Fund and the Retirement Fund is authorized to secure its guarantee by the pledge of any of its assets. The making of any advance of funds by the Retirement Fund pursuant to such guaranty shall be deemed a loan to American Samoa Government to be repaid on such terms as shall be agreed upon between the finance committee and the Retirement Fund. The Board of Trustees may authorize the execution of, and entry by the Retirement Fund into, such agreements, conveyances, guarantees, assignments, pledges and all other documents as are necessary or useful for the making and implementation of such a guarantee.

(b) That part of any loan so made which bears the same ratio to the total amount of such loan as the ratio the refunded obligations of the American Samoa Government to the Retirement Fund bears to the original principal amount of refunding bonds shall not be counted as an "obligation issued by the Government" for purposes of the limitation imposed by A.S.C.A., Section 7.1444(g)(3).

(c) The Finance Committee is authorized to so contract and to secure any loan so made by the Retirement Fund to American Samoa Government by the mortgage or pledge of any physical asset of American Samoa Government, including, but not limited to, its interest in the Executive Office Building.

(d) Such a guarantee, once executed and relied upon by the purchaser of such refunding bonds wholly or partially secured thereby, shall be deemed valid and enforceable under the laws of American Samoa and no part of the authorization or authority for such refunding bonds, such a guarantee or any other security therefor shall be repealed or modified in a manner detrimental to the owners of such bonds so long as such bonds remain outstanding.

11.3010 Legislative authorization of refunding bonds.


(a) The American Samoa Finance Committee is authorized to issue refunding bonds in the principal amount of not to exceed $19,000,000 for the purpose of refunding part or all of the following obligations and to pay all costs incurred in connection with such bond issuance and refunding:

(1) The lease-purchase obligation of American Samoa Government which secures the outstanding bonds of the American Samoa Economic Development Authority issued under date of May 1, 1988.

(2) The 1991 loan from the American Samoa Government Employees Retirement Fund to ASG in the original principal amount of $5,000,000.

(3) The 1998 loan from the American Samoa Government Employees Retirement Fund to American Samoa Government in the original principal amount of $10,000,000.

(b) Such refunding bonds shall be general obligations of American Samoa Government and the Finance Committee is authorized to pledge the full faith and credit of American Samoa Government to the full and prompt payment of the principal of and interest on such bonds as the same shall become due and payable. The principal amount of the refunding bonds may exceed the principal amount of the obligations refunded by such bonds if a savings in total principal and interest is achieved.

11.3011 Trust funds authorized.


(a) The Finance Committee is authorized to contract with a trustee bank or trust company for all services necessary or useful in connection with the issuance, sale, delivery and payment of such refunding bonds.
(b) All revenues from the following sources may be pledged by the finance committee to pay and secure the refunding bonds and shall be paid directly into the bond fund securing such bonds:
(1) All wharfage and related charges heretofore pledged, pursuant to A.S.C.A. Section 20.1607, to the payment of the bonds of the American Samoa Economic Development Authority issued under date of May 1, 1988.
(2) That portion of the tobacco and alcohol taxes imposed pursuant to 11.1002 heretofore pledged by American Samoa Government to pay and secure a loan from the Retirement Fund to American Samoa Government.
(c) The Finance Committee is authorized to establish a special bond fund or account for the payment of the principal of and interest on any bonds and to pay costs of administration of such bonds and to establish a separate fund or account to serve as a reserve for the payment of such principal and interest.
(d) The provisions of 20.1607(h), exclusive of the last sentence shall remain in effect to secure the payment of the refunding bonds so long as they remain outstanding, not withstanding the retirement of the 1988 bonds of the American Samoa Economic Development Authority out of the proceeds of such refunding bonds. All other taxes and other revenues pledged to pay obligations refunded by the bonds shall also remain in effect to secure the payment of the refunding bonds so long as they remain outstanding, not withstanding the retirement of such obligations.
(e) The Finance Committee is authorized to contract for a trustee bank to maintain the assets of American Samoa Government’s general fund in a special account of the bank created and maintained for such purposes. The Finance Committee may contract that all or any necessary portion of taxes and other revenue of American Samoa Government’s general fund shall first be deposited in such general fund account maintained with such bank. Pursuant to such contract, the bank shall, by the last business day of each month, verify that the required deposit of principal of and interest on such refunding bonds for the prior month have been made into the bond fund securing such bonds. If any such monthly deposit has not been made when such verification takes place, such bank shall make the required deposit in the bond fund or reserve account out of any moneys on hand in the general fund account.
(f) The Finance Committee may contract that the trustee bank so named may not be replaced without the consent of a majority of the holders of the bonds secured thereby if such replacement has any adverse affect on any bond owners or on the value of any bond. No authorization for the refunding bonds or the security therefore may be repealed or modified by the Legislature in any manner detrimental to the bond owners relying thereon until such bonds are no longer outstanding.

11.3012 Consent to suit.


The American Samoa Government, whether acting in its governmental or proprietary capacity, is subject to suit in the territorial and federal courts for obligations created in this chapter, and shall be liable for damages and subject to the equity powers of the courts in any action brought to enforce the obligations of American Samoa Government or the rights of any participant in a transaction whereby American Samoa Government borrows money or otherwise incurs indebtedness or incurs other obligations in connection with any indebtedness, as if American Samoa Government were a private person or corporation. Venue for any litigation with respect to bonds issued pursuant to this act shall be laid in the High Court of American Samoa or the Federal District Court, District of Hawaii.

11.3013 Procurement.


All decisions regarding purchasing by the Finance Committee shall be in strict accordance with the American Samoa Government’s procurement laws, pursuant to Title 12, A.S.C.A.