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Thu Nov 30, 2017, 01:18 PM

A controversial 'oversight board' could take over Puerto Ricos hurricane rebuilding effort

Source: Washington Post

A controversial ‘oversight board’ could take over Puerto Rico’s hurricane rebuilding effort

By Mariely Lopez-Santana November 30 at 7:00 AM

On Sept. 20, the world watched slack-jawed as Hurricane Maria flattened Puerto Rico, devastating the island and leaving more than 3 million people without power or clean water for weeks. On Nov. 13, Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Roselló appeared before Congress to ask for $94 billion to rebuild the U.S. territory.

But can Roselló’s administration manage such a vast project? After a dubious $300 million no-bid contract to a small utility company called Whitefish to restore the island’s power, Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah), chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, said that the island has a “credibility gap.” He and many others have called for the nonelected Financial Oversight and Management Board for Puerto Rico, popularly known as “la junta,” to extend its powers to overseeing the rebuilding effort as well.

Many Puerto Ricans — including the pro-statehood governor — see this call as a threat to their democratic rights. Here’s what you need to know about the controversial fiscal oversight board.


Since the hurricane, calls to extend the oversight board’s powers have become louder, as many pundits and policymakers feel the island’s government is incompetent. But any such efforts are being reined in by federal courts. Last week, U.S. District Court Judge Laura Taylor Swain denied the oversight board’s request to appoint an emergency manager to the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, ruling that the oversight board does not have the authority to appoint public officials. Rosselló responded that the decision upheld his office’s position about the board’s power, writing:

It is clear that the [board] does not have the power to take full control of the Government or its instrumentalities. … [T]he administration and public management of Puerto Rico remains with the democratically elected government.


Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2017/11/30/a-controversial-oversight-board-could-take-over-puerto-ricos-hurricane-rebuilding-effort/

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Reply A controversial 'oversight board' could take over Puerto Ricos hurricane rebuilding effort (Original post)
Eugene Nov 2017 OP
woodsprite Nov 2017 #1

Response to Eugene (Original post)

Thu Nov 30, 2017, 01:35 PM

1. So, like the oversight boards in Flint, Michigan? n/t

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