Posts Categorized: Archives

School Lunches in Puerto Rico

Since the 1960s, schools in all 50 states and in Puerto Rico have provided affordable hot lunches for children and subsidized the meals of children who needed that help. A 2012 study determined that the costs of providing school lunches for Alaska and Hawaii were greater than related costs in the 48 contiguous states, but the researchers… Read more »

New Study of U.S. Ocean Freight Law and Puerto Rico Inconclusive

A major Federal study released today that examines the application of the primary Federal ocean freight law to Puerto Rico — and exempting the territory from it, as some in the islands have advocated — raises as many questions as it answers. The law, known as the Jones Act, requires that shipping between U.S. ports be on vessels… Read more »

“The Commonwealth”: Does It Matter What We Call It?

The big news lately out of Puerto Rico has often been about sports. It’s exciting to follow Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic, seeing powerful nations go down before a tiny territory. But Puerto Rico is rarely identified as a territory. In this article, this one, and many more, Puerto Rico is called “the… Read more »

Puerto Rico Law Enforcement Funding Included in Legislation

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed legislation to fund the Federal government from March 28th through September 30, the rest of Federal Fiscal Year 2013. A separate bill has been introduced in the Senate and a compromise is expected to be reached, although there are differences between the House bill written by the House’s… Read more »

Budget Could End Dream of Puerto Rico Tax Advantage Over Foreign Countries

From 1921 until 2006, Puerto Rico had specific Federal tax advantages over the States and foreign countries as a location for manufacturing by companies in the States.  The advantages, first an exemption from Federal income taxes and, then, tax credits that substantially lowered taxes due, were phased out beginning in 1996. There were several reasons for the repeal… Read more »

Smaller States See Power Grow, But All States Have More Clout Than Puerto Rico

An extensive New York Times analysis yesterday found that the political power of States with small populations was growing relative to States with large populations. States with small populations have always had a relatively greater share in Federal decision-making but the article pointed out that the relative influence has been expanding due to population shifts.

Governor’s Arguments Against Plebiscite Results Fail

During a recent visit to Washington, DC, Puerto Rico’s new governor challenged the results of last November’s plebiscite, which was held along with his and other local elections. Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla said that the plebiscite was unfair because the ballot defined Puerto Rico’s current status as “territorial.”

Media Response to US Citizenship Rallies Misses the Mark

Media coverage of rallies to celebrate U.S. citizenship anniversary varies in accuracy. On March 2, 1917, the citizens of Puerto Rico were granted U.S. citizenship. Ninety six years later, Puerto Rican leaders gathered in Washington, D.C., in San Juan, and other cities to demand an end to second-class citizenship for Puerto Rico’s residents. Reports of… Read more »

Sotomayor Responds to Racist Remark by U.S. Prosecutor

Assistant U.S. Attorney Sam Ponder asked a jury in 2011, speaking of defendant Bongani Charles Calhoun, who said he didn’t realize the men he was with were planning a drug deal, You’ve got African Americans, you’ve got Hispanics, you’ve got a bag full of money. Does that tell you — a light bulb doesn’t go… Read more »