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Wed Feb 28, 2018, 09:57 AM

Puerto Rico asks Congress for help with delayed disaster relief loan

Source: Reuters

POLITICS FEBRUARY 27, 2018 / 5:49 PM / UPDATED 6 HOURS AGO

Puerto Rico asks Congress for help with delayed disaster relief loan

Hilary Russ
3 MIN READ

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. Treasury has delayed a $4.7 billion post-hurricane loan to Puerto Rico and reduced the amount by more than half, and the resulting financial strain threatens to disrupt essential services, the island’s governor said in a letter asking U.S. congressional leaders to intervene.

Congress approved the community disaster loan in October as part of a larger relief package after hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria devastated the island, which was already dealing with the largest government bankruptcy in U.S. history.

But four months later, the U.S. territory still has not received the loan. Last week, the Treasury said it wanted to shrink the amount to $2.065 billion and impose special terms and conditions, according to Governor Ricardo Rossello’s letter, dated Feb. 26.

The Puerto Rico government “may be forced to cut deeply into its liquidity reserves and make the untenable choice of which essential services to cut so that it can maintain other essential services,” Rossello wrote.

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Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-puertorico-liquidity/puerto-rico-asks-congress-for-help-with-delayed-disaster-relief-loan-idUSKCN1GB33R

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