The resident commissioner of Puerto Rico in Washington DC, Jenniffer González, announced today that she signed a letter to the president of the United States, Donald Trump, to clarify the situation regarding the funds that he promised to grant to the island for its reconstruction due to the passage of Hurricane Maria
In the letter, with a copy to the majority and minority leaders of the appropriation committees, both from the lower house and the federal Senate, González asked Trump to return to Puerto Rico and corroborate the importance of economic aid for the citizens of the Caribbean island.
González started the letter expressing his “deep concern” about the possibility that up to 2.5 billion dollars that the US Army Corps of Engineers would use for the reconstruction of Puerto Rico could be used for the construction of the US border wall. UU with Mexico.
“As you know, for his visit to Puerto Rico after the hurricanes Irma and María and the recovery assistance he has authorized, the territory was devastated by these disasters,” said González, at the time he indicated that the estimated damages affected in the island surpass 139,000 million dollars.
Gonzalez also said that after Trump confirmed declaring Puerto Rico a major disaster area, the US Congress approved supplemental disaster assignments to help people and communities in need.
“After months of initial recovery and efforts to save lives, Puerto Ricans and those dedicated to the island’s recovery have begun the reconstruction phase of the recovery phase,” he added.
González explained that the funds allocated by Congress under the Bipartisan Budget Law of 2018 (PL 115-123) included a package of 17,400 million dollars for the USACE, for disaster recovery, both in the United States and its territories, which include Puerto Rico.
The 2,500 million, according to González, were allocated to six large flood risk mitigation projects throughout Puerto Rico.
“Seventeen months after the impact of Hurricane Maria, these projects are still critical for the recovery and economic resurgence of residents in Puerto Rico,” Gonzalez said.
However, according to González, the new leadership of Congress “is not willing to fully finance”, which causes “an extreme anxiety, not only in the Puerto Rican community on the island and the continent,” in areas that were also affected by hurricanes in the year 2017.
“This situation feeds a negative narrative about his administration that has been used and will be used to circumvent all the efforts made previously,” González said.
“It is essential that the White House make a firm statement about what the people of Puerto Rico can expect with respect to their future recovery effort, and present themselves as the strongest advocate to preserve the funding of these works and put an end to these rumors.” , he added.
Gonzalez, in turn, said he recognized Trump’s purpose of creating the border wall with Mexico, but urged him to take priority in helping Puerto Ricans recover from the cyclone.
“Any loss of funds to address infrastructure problems exacerbates our ability to deal with other problems, including our problems related to borders, including the entry of drugs and weapons.” (EFEUSA) .-