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Month: October 2019

Resident Commissioner González-Colón introduces legislation for statehood vote in Puerto Rico

Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González-Colón (NPP, R) of Puerto Rico, alongside Representatives José Serrano (D) of New York, Darren Soto (D) of Florida, Don Young (R) of Alaska, Stephanie Murphy (D) of Florida, Rob Bishop (R) of Utah and 40 other members of Congress, introduced bipartisan legislation to begin Puerto Rico’s admission process as a state of the Union. By requiring a statehood yes-or-no vote on the islands, this legislation follows the same precedent established for the admission process of Alaska and Hawaii.  The Puerto Rico legislature, however, would not have to wait for congressional action on the bill.  The...

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Governor Bryan introduces legislation to create the USVI’s Emergency Medical Services System

United States Virgin Islands Governor Albert Bryan Jr. (D) submitted two major pieces of proposed legislation to dramatically overhaul emergency medical services in the territory by merging two critical response apparatuses to increase available resources and manpower, and by creating a system that is more efficient and responsive to the emergency needs of residents and visitors to the Virgin Islands. The first proposed legislation, the Virgin Islands Emergency Medical Services System Act, creates the first-ever Emergency Medical Services System and gives the US Virgin Islands Department of Health regulatory authority over all out-of-hospital emergency medical services providers in the...

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For your next vacation, consider an alternative tourism blossoming in Puerto Rico

The aftermath of Hurricane Maria caused significant damage to the tourism industry in Puerto Rico. According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), there was a loss in 2017 of 826,100 visitors to the Caribbean who would have produced $741 million and over 11,000 jobs. Hurricane Maria affected close to 10,000 small businesses, which work with far less business than before. As it stands, most hotels and restaurants have reopened and are welcoming in a record number of visitors post-Hurricane Maria. Unfortunately, many issues remain such as power outages from damaged and outdated grids; a drought impacting 30%...

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RepresentUS ignores US territories in campaign

RepresentUs was launched as a non-profit organization in 2012 by founder Josh Silver, with a non-partisan aim of combatting legalized corruption in US politics. Its model is inspired by the 2011 American Anti-Corruption Act, which aimed to introduce new rules about lobbying and campaign finance to increase transparency in politics. Several dozen chapters across the continental United States, but none located in any of the US territories: Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Northern Marianas Islands. Despite a growing involvement in promoting anti-corruption political reform across the country at the federal level and in...

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Final seven members of Bryan’s cabinet sworn in

United States Virgin Islands Governor Albert Bryan Jr. (D) held his final swearing-in ceremony today, officially filling out his administration’s 29-member Cabinet, which has been charged with moving forward his agenda to stabilize the US Virgin Islands government and restore public trust and to rebuild and sustain a vibrant economy. “This is the final round of people we are swearing-in, and it’s a time of great transition for us as a Cabinet,” Governor Bryan said. “People look at ‘change course now’ as a physical change, but it’s a mental change. It’s an attitude change. It’s a policy change. It’s...

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