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Author: Frank Benitez

Uber arrives in Puerto Rico, amid chaos

With a legal battle between the Public Service Commission, the Transportation Department, and Uber,   the latter began its operations in Puerto Rico on July 11 without required permits. The Public Service Commission filed a cease-and-desist order against the company.  The case involves deciding how and by whom Uber should be regulated by, the Public Service Commission or the Department of Transportation and Public Works.  Uber is claiming that the Department of Transportation and Public Works gave them authorization to begin operations and should continue to regulate them in Puerto Rico. On July 20 the Court of Appeals of Puerto...

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PROMESA reinforces colonialism in Puerto Rico

On June 30 the US Congress approved the very overdue Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act or PROMESA.  The President signed the bill into law the same day.  Earlier the Senate voted 68 to 30 in favor of the bill. Notable people who voted against the bill include Senator Bob Menendez, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders.  Puerto Rico to prepare for the historic law has done something it hasn’t done since 1933, it defaulted on its debt, paying roughly half of $2 billion in debt payments due because the territory simply does not have enough to pay...

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PROMESA hard to deliver

As PROMESA moves through Congress, it has already been slammed by multiple critics such as Lin-Manuel Miranda, who is a writer of an op-ed in both English and Spanish titled “Making Lemonade From Lemons.”  His biggest concern is that which Bernie Sanders also shares: that the established oversight board is undemocratic and does not represent the views of Puerto Ricans.  He fears that there could be a vote against debt restructuring which would hurt Puerto Rico’s health care system, schools, and government agencies. Bernie Sanders has his own plans to save the island, and has introduced his own legislation...

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A PROMESA kept, but changed

PROMESA, the bill meant to establish an oversight board to assist the Government of Puerto Rico, including its instrumentalities, in managing its public finances has now been approved in the United States House Committee on Natural Resources, following last few weeks’ failure from Republicans to meet their deadline for action. The bill so far has three key components: A 7 member oversight  board appointed by the President that would be tasked with coming up with a financial plan for the island An 18-month respite from any lawsuits from creditors Allowing the oversight board to restructure debt Much of the...

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