Leaders Unite to Include Puerto Rico in Congressional Proposals

With all of the criticism of President Trump’s personal responses to Puerto Rico’s major natural disasters and the territory’s government and his administration’s slow release of the tens of billions of dollars in aid, an obvious question is whether there is a similar issue regarding the Federal response to the COVID-19 health and economic catastrophe…. Read more »

Coronavirus in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico has 21 confirmed cases of COVID-19, as of this writing. There is currently no evidence of community spread — contagion within the territory. All of the cases have been among travelers. This is a smaller number than most states, perhaps because Puerto Rico took quick action in response to the virus. Puerto Rico… Read more »

Coronavirus Restrictions Imposed in Puerto Rico

Late yesterday, Governor Wanda Vazquez Garced issued Executive Order No. 2020-023 laying out the actions to be taken in response to COVID-19, the coronavirus which was recently declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization. Business closures Most businesses must close from Sunday, March 15th at 6:00 p.m. until Sunday, March 30, 2020. 14 days… Read more »

House Proposal Includes $100 Million in Nutrition Funding for Puerto Rico, Other Territories

Earlier this week, House Democrats introduced the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to guide and enhance the federal government’s response to the COVID-19 public health emergency. The legislative proposal includes $100 million for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to provide nutrition assistance grants to Puerto Rico, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the… Read more »

Puerto Rico Child Tax Credit Proposal Attracts Bipartisan Senate Support

Senator Rick Scott (R-FL) has joined S 698, the Child Tax Credit Equity for Puerto Rico Act of 2019, as a cosponsor. The bill was introduced by Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) last year, and is cosponsored by Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) as well as Senator Scott. The Child Tax Credit (CTC) gives… Read more »

DeLauro Uses Committee Post to Push for Puerto Rico

Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services & Education took advantage of a recent congressional hearing to emphasize the need for more financial support for Puerto Rico. Using her allocated time for questions, Rep. Rosa DeLauro carefully made her point. “Let me mention Puerto Rico if… Read more »

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Takes on Puerto Rico’s Status as a Colony

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) has not taken a public position on Puerto Rico independence or statehood, but she has not shied away from criticizing the U.S. “legacy of colonization” with respect to the Caribbean island. “The climate change-powered storm killed over 3,000 Puerto Ricans, American citizens — my own grandfather died in the aftermath —… Read more »

Gonzalez Colon Testifies on Need for Resources to Enhance Border Security in Puerto Rico

On Wednesday, Resident Commissioner Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon (R-PR) testified before Congress on the need to ensure the  U.S. Department of Homeland Security has the resources it needs to enhance border security operations in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands — the Nation’s Caribbean border. “A well-coordinated approach to secure the U.S. homeland requires attention to… Read more »

States Expect Federal Reimbursement for Coronavirus Costs

22 Americans have now died from the coronavirus, and U.S. health officials have confirmed more than 500 cases across more than a dozen states. Two of these States, Florida and Washington, have declared emergencies, and all are pumping funds into prevention and response programs. They’re assuming that the federal government will reimburse them for their… Read more »

Sen. Blumenthal Calls for a Marshall Plan for Puerto Rico

Returning from a visit to Puerto Rico and witnessing the devastation and continuing needs for disaster relief firsthand, Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) has called for a “next generation Marshall Plan” to support and rebuild Puerto Rico. Speaking to the Spanish American Merchants Association in Hartford, Connecticut, Blumenthal shared that he had seen children attending school in… Read more »