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Author: Daniel Ziebarth

Revised Puerto Rico fiscal plan confronts complicated questions

In the wake of political standoff and debate, Governor Ricardo Rosselló of Puerto Rico introduced a revised fiscal plan for the territory. The revised plan, published on Thursday, April 6, remained controversial as massive cuts to previous funding have been outlined to hopefully pull Puerto Rico out of fiscal debt. The newly presented plan posits a surplus in excess of $6 billion by the year 2023, with a total surplus of $7.36 billion following the inclusion of non-recurring items. However, there remain those who challenge the plan, arguing that the expectation models are overly optimistic in the assessment of...

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Puerto Rico school closures signal possible brain drain

The citizens of Puerto Rico are working hard to overcome the economic, social, and emotional aftermath left behind after Hurricane Maria slammed the islands on September 2017. The storm blew back a curtain that revealed a lush but treacherous paradise, illuminated by high unemployment rates, a crumbling infrastructure, enormous debt, and an uncertain business environment. It also revealed that the Puerto Rican government had completely failed to invest in its people for the future to build a stable system. Puerto Rico’s Department of Education announced Thursday that it would close 283 schools this summer, a 25% reduction in the...

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End of impasse between Puerto Rico and the Federal officials on loan

After months of delay, Governor Ricardo Rosselló (D, NPP) of Puerto Rico announced on Thursday, March 22 that he had reached a deal with US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin concerning the release of community disaster loans to assist Puerto Rico in recovery efforts. Public officials in Puerto Rico will be able to access community disaster loan funds as they see fit until March 2020 as the territory’s cash balance falls below $1.1 billion, on the approval of a appointed board overseeing the territory’s finances and the judge overseeing its bankruptcy deal. Governor Rosselló had previously criticized Mnuchin for failing...

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Puerto Rico seeks school privatization as part of economic recovery

As residents of Puerto Rico continue to rebuild following Hurricane Maria, the US territory also remains in the midst of a massive debt crisis. One area that will see major reform as officials hope to cutback on government spending is education. Governor Ricardo Rosselló has announced his plan to close over 300 public schools in Puerto Rico, which amounts to a decrease of approximately 30% of public schools located in the territory. Over 140,000 Puerto Ricans had left the territory for the mainland US by November, 2017, with approximately 14,000 being public school students,and that number has grown to...

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Governor Rosselló submits revised fiscal plan for Puerto Rico

Governor of Puerto Rico Ricardo Rosselló submitted a revised fiscal plan to Financial Oversight and Management Board for the US territory on Tuesday, February 13 in an attempt to rebuild Puerto Rico’s economy and recover from financial and natural disasters the territory has faced in recent months. The submitted plan paints a bleak picture for Puerto Rico in the near future, in which there will be an expected 8 percent fall in population and 11 percent decrease in overall economic activity. Another concern outlined in the plan pertains to the territory’s ability to alleviate debt burdens and pay off...

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