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April 23, 2018

Puerto Rico

Major League Baseball Returns to Puerto Rico

Source: Puerto Rico Report Last week marked the first Major League Baseball games in Puerto Rico since 2010. Baseball players stayed away from Puerto Rico for fear of the Zika virus in 2016, and Hurricane Maria damaged the stadium in 2017. In 2018, though, baseball is back. The Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians played…

Congressional Democrats Reject Fiscal Plan

Source: Puerto Rico Report Democrat leaders on Puerto Rico issues in the U.S. House of Representatives late yesterday rejected the fiscal plan for the Government of Puerto Rico adopted by the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA) Financial Oversight and Management Board. Representatives Nydia Velazquez and Jose Serrano of New York echoed…

Tension among leaders in Puerto Rico and Washington

Source: Puerto Rico Report A series of letters sent back and forth over the past few weeks highlights the tension growing among Puerto Rico’s elected leaders, the PROMESA oversight board (FOMB), and leaders in Washington. The FOMB was scheduled to approve Governor Rossello’s fiscal plan on March 30th of this year, but still has…

Governor Rosselló calls for deep tax cuts

Source: Puerto Rico Report Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló Nevares yesterday outlined a broad package of deep tax cuts that he has hoped to get enacted by June 30th. The reductions will save taxpayers $451 million next year and $849 million a year by 2023. Individuals would not have an income tax liability if…

Governor Reports to Congress on Recovery Plan

Source: Puerto Rico Report On April 10, Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello Nevares provided a second monthly report to the U.S. Congress on the development of a recovery plan for the territory from last September’s hurricanes. The report comes in the form of a letter from the Governor to leaders of the House and…

Children in Puerto Rico: The Maria Generation?

Source: Puerto Rico Report A report from the Youth Development Institute of Puerto Rico sounds a call for help for children who are still affected by Hurricane Maria — the cadre they’re calling “The Maria Generation.” “The Impact of Hurricane Maria on Puerto Rico’s Children,” by Amanda Rivera Flores and Caridad Arroyo Quija, begins…

A Bright Future for Puerto Rico Manufacturing

Source: Puerto Rico Report Manufacturing has been an important industry for Puerto Rico since Operation Bootstrap shifted the focus on the Island from agriculture to manufacturing, beginning in the late 1940s. Between 1950 and 1960, manufacturing jobs increased from 55,000 to 82,000. By the 21st century, manufacturing accounted for 46% of the Gross Domestic…

Board to Adopt Plan as Governor Insists on His Policies

Source: Puerto Rico Report The Puerto Rico Financial Oversight and Management Board (FOMB) reportedly plans to adopt its own final revised, multi-year fiscal adjustment plan for the territorial government by the end of the month after receiving Governor Ricardo Rossello Nevares’ plan late last week. The FOMB had planned to adopt a final plan…

Agriculture and the Future of Puerto Rico

Source: Puerto Rico Report Puerto Rico’s need for jobs in the short term could be satisfied by construction and other work relating to rebuilding the Island. For Puerto Rico’s economic future, however, other industries will have to grow. One of the industries that was making headlines before Hurricane Maria’s destruction has historically been of…

Puerto Rico and Federal Income Tax

Source: Puerto Rico Report As Americans become increasingly aware that Puerto Ricans are our fellow citizens, there is a similar growing recognition that Puerto Ricans do not  pay federal income tax in the same way that stateside Americans do. This is federal law. At first glance, it appears that the federal law benefits Puerto…

Governor Lists Objections to Board Demands

Source: Puerto Rico Report Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello Nevares yesterday sent the territorial Financial Oversight and Management Board initial explanations of why Board-demanded changes to his latest proposed revised multi-year Fiscal Plan would not be implemented. The letter did not cover eleven ‘required’ adjustments to the Plan’s baseline projections as the Governor still waits…

Samantha Bee and Full Frontal in Puerto Rico

Source: Puerto Rico Report Samantha Bee presented a special episode of Full Frontal in Puerto Rico last night. In preparation, the program did research on Puerto Rico and produced a “Primer on Puerto Rico.” This video does not pretend to be a precise, balanced explanation of the relationship between Puerto Rico and the United…

Investigating Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority

Source: Puerto Rico Report Six months after Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, tens of thousands of residents are still without power. They can’t store perishable food, cook, cool or heat their homes, or use modern comforts most of us can take for granted. Many businesses including hospitals, continue to rely on generators because electricity…

FOMB Seeks to Reduce “Extraordinarily Expensive” Legal Fees

Source: Puerto Rico Report Under PROMESA,the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act passed by Congress in 2016, a Fiscal Oversight and Management Board (FOMB) was created. The FMOB’s goal, as recently set forth by FOMB Chairman José B. Carrión III, in separate letters to Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello and congressional leaders…

Carlos Correa Skips White House Visit

Source: Puerto Rico Report The Houston Astros visited the White House, but Carlos Correa opted out. Instead of joining in that historic visit, he decided to spend the day working with his family to get supplies to Puerto Rico. Correa assured reporters that there was no political message in his decision to devote his…

U.S. Congressional Committee to Investigate PREPA

Source: Puerto Rico Report Leaders of the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee sent a letter today to Justo Gonzalez, Interim Executive Director of PREPA, requesting documents and information to “better understand the scope of alleges corruption in PREPA’s power restoration operations[‘]” The letter is signed by House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT),…

Puerto Rico Statehood Commission Demands Action

Source: Puerto Rico Report The Puerto Rico Statehood Commission has written to Congress demanding action on Puerto Rico statehood. The letter, sent on March 6, was signed by five members of the Commission, each of whom was identified as either a Shadow United States Senator or Shadow Member of Congress.  The correspondence, addressed to…

FCC to Provide Millions for Puerto Rico Communications

Source: Puerto Rico Report Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai announced that the FCC will dedicatae $954 million toward improving connectivity in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Puerto Rico will benefit from a $750 million fund called Uniendo a Puerto Rico (Bringing Puerto Rico Together). The goal is to restore telecommunications access and…

Puerto Rico Foreclosure Moratorium Extended

Source: Puerto Rico Report Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González Colón (R-PR), Delegate Stacey Plaskett (D-USVI) and Representative Darren Soto (D-FL) led a bipartisan letter to Ben Carson, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), last week asking the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to extend its moratorium on foreclosures in…

Governor Rossello Asks for Help with the U.S. Department of Treasury

Source: Puerto Rico Report Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello Nevares sent a letter to Majority and Minority Leaders of both the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate, containing specific complaints about U.S. Treasury Department positions regarding loans to territorial government entities from the $4.9 billion appropriated by the October 26th Federal disaster assistance law.…

Puerto Rico Hurricane Recovery Update

Source: Puerto Rico Report Discussions of Puerto Rico now feel as though there is a Before and After: before Hurricanes Irma and Maria hit the territory, and after the disaster struck. At Puerto Rico Report, our focus is on the political status of Puerto Rico. Current views on the status of Puerto Rico include…

NASS Resolution Favors Puerto Rico Statehood

Source: Puerto Rico Report The National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS) has issued a Resolution in Support of Self Determination and Equality for Puerto Rico. NASS offers six premises for the resolution: Puerto Rico has been a territory of the United States, owned by the U.S. and therefore “a part of the United…

FEMA Questioned on Contract Problems

Source: Puerto Rico Report FEMA has taken a lot of criticism for their handling of Hurricane Maria’s destruction in Puerto Rico. Now, Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Gary Peters (D-MI), and Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND)– all from the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs — have written a letter to FEMA’s Administrator, Brock Long,…