About MicSem About MicSem
Micronesian Government: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow: A Micronesian Civics Textbook

Written by Josh Levy. Edited by Francis X. Hezel, SJ

Pohnpei: FSM Department of Education, 2008. 315 pp.2008 Government History

For as long as people have lived in these islands, there has been government. After all, government is simply the way in which power and authority are organized in a society. Any community must have its leaders, rules of conduct, and the authority to enforce those rules. They are as important for the well-being of the community as food cultivation and housing.

This textbook presents a look at the government in the Federated States of Micronesia, as it exists now and as it has developed over the years. That's why it is entitled "Micronesian Government: Yesterday, Today, and tomorrow." In this book students learn about the system of government in the islands today, and how the government came to be the way it is today.

Government did not begin with the arrival of the first foreigners. Government is as old as the Micronesian people themselves. Long before the first legislature was formed or the first governor was appointed island people had been governing themselves. Hence, this book begins with the traditional government in the different parts of the FSM and the way in which the traditional systems operated. Students see how leaders exercised their power, but also how ordinary people influenced the decisions that were made in their communities.

Save This FileSave (PDF) E-Mail This PageE-Mail Print This PagePrint

Comments (8)

Something to say? Post comments through the MicSem Discussion Forum. SIGN UP, or LOG IN, here.

redman(posted on June 09)

One thing I don't like the tax structure is that it doesn't have any deductions to lower the taxable GRT. This does not promote other non-profit org. to be established in our states becauese there is no tax exemptions in the system. Just a thought.

baron(posted on June 08)


jrtemengil@palaugov.(posted on October 12)

Tirow...and kinisou for the responds.. Wenik...to lend a hand to a brother in need is not by embarrassing him...this is not meant to embarrasses anyone or anybody in Chuuk or FSM....but if I did...then "Ngang Ua Fokkun Omusaro Tipis".... Palau Income tax.....is 6% of the first $8,000.00 of your yearly salary....an 12% over the $8,000.00. If you don't make that much, thegovernemnt continues to deduct taxes, but will refund them all at the end of the year and that's income tax. Business Gross Revenue tax (GRT)...is 4% of what your business make every quarter..... We have two types of tax refunds..... Income tax refunds......you can claim up to 10% of your income taxes paid to the government, provided that you donate money to non-profit organizations or you pay tuition to private schools.... Business Tax Refund....businesses can claim up to 10% of GRT paid to the government, provided that the business donates money to non-profit organization. These two types of taxes (refund) have urge more people to work and start small businessess...because the more taxes you pay, which no one likes to, the more you help your ecomony. Most of these small businesses are tourist service type business. Import tax is handled by the Palau Customs.....$ .30 cents for an ounce of liquor... $ .20 cents for an ounce owine... $ .10 cents per 12fl. ounce... $ 3.60 per case of 12 fl ounce of beer... $ 25% from C.I.F. value of all perfumey product adn cosmetics... $ 20.00 per carton of ten packs $ 150% from the CIF Value for other tobacco product... $ .05 cents per gallon of liquid fuel Well, that's what I have...and if I can be of any help, please do not hesitate to drop me a mail. Sepe.... in Palau we vote for our leaders to sit in the congress.....we tell them what to do for the sake of many....if they do not do what the we, voters/taxpayers, want...we remove them by petition at anytime, anywhere and anyplace...that happens every year for a fact. It takes time to educate the public about this power that voters and taxpayers have.......but it will pay-off at the end always.... Kinisou, Atin Sapuk

wenik(posted on October 10)

Sepe, You are missing the point of the question. Please don't embarass us FSMers with that kind of a response to our friend from Palau. If you don't know please don't say anything. Friend from Palau, I apologise. Let me share with you what little I know about our tax system - National Tax System that is. On personal income that there are two taxes; 1)Social Security and 2)income tax. On the former we pay 6% on the first $5,000 we make per quarter or $20,000 per year. Meaning our maximum contribution to our social security fund is $1,200 per year that is if one makes $20,000/annum or more. For those who make less, it is simply 6% of the gross income. As for the latter its a flate rate. I believe, and I may be wrong, the rate is based on income brackets. The maximum rate if my understanding is correct is something like 9 or 10 percent of ones gross income. On the business side, we have what we call the Gross Revenue Tax (GRT). Businesses pay $80 on the first $10,000 of their gross revenue and I think 3 or 5 percent on every revenue dollar earned beyond $10k. This tax is filed and paid every calendar quarter. Personally, I think personal tax structure is fine. We don't need to change that. Perhaps the change needed is how the government use it. I think, however, the business tax structure needs to be reassessed. How are you folks in Palau assess tax on businesses?


Sign up for the MicSem e-mail list to be notified of new MicSem publications:






  • Public Schools
  • Diabetes Awareness
  • Beachcombers
  • History of Micronesia
  • Catolic Church Micro.
  • MicSem by Category

About MicSem

Micronesian Seminar, Post Office Box 160, Pohnpei, FM 96941 | tel. 691.320.4067 | fax. 691.320.6668 | email. micsem@micsem.org | ©2010 all rights reserved.

Sign up for the MicSem e-mail list to the right.
Want print copies via postal mail? Click here.