Bordallo, Delegates now plan Puerto Rico bill amendments
The delegates of the several United States territories in the Pacific are moving towards making amendments to HR 4900, or PROMESA, the bill introduced in the US House to address the Puerto Rico economic crisis.
Bordallo’s office says without a ‘better deal’ from Republicans in the Puerto Rico debt bill, the delegates will have no choice but to fight for amendments.
The bill was sidelined last week for more negotiations with the White House, after it became apparent, the votes weren’t there to pass the measure. Both parties want changes.
Congresswoman Bordallo, the CNMI’s Greg ‘Kilili’ Sablan, and American Samoa Republican Aumua Amata Radewagen want the same deal Puerto Rico’s getting—bankruptcy tools, Medicaid matching relief, and Earned Income Tax Credit reimbursement…measures that could provide millions in new local help.
Bordallo says Puerto Rico’s problems won’t be solved by debt restructuring alone…and without cross-jurisdictional fixes, Guam and the outlying islands could be headed down the same road as Puerto Rico. She says the White House recognizes this. “The administration’s proposal includes the other territories, in removing the caps on the Medicaid program, readjusting our ‘F-Maps,’ as well as providing a cover-over to the mirror tax code jurisdiction, on providing E-I-T-C. I simply do not believe, that the proposals we are looking at now, will resolve Puerto Rico’s problems. So, we are doing all that we can in ensuring that what is happening to Puerto Rico, does not happen to the rest of us,” says Bordallo.
Despite all these efforts, the bill is stalled right now, with sharp disagreements both between the two parties, and within the Republican majority itself. Action is unlikely before Puerto Rico has to make a payment on bonds on May 1.