(March 11, 2017 – San Juan, Puerto Rico) Governor Ricardo Rosselló Nevares presented additional measures to the Financial Oversight and Management Board (FOMB) aimed at protecting the most vulnerable of the population. The new measures avoid the implementation of the Board’s proposed 20 percent reduction in public servants’ salaries.
“Our Administration’s plan remains the same: to prevent affecting the most vulnerable and to operate a fiscally responsible government, guaranteeing essential services to the citizens,” declared the chief executive.
Elías Sánchez, the governor’s representative to the FOMB, confirmed that the financial advisors for both sides are maintaining a dialogue, as requested by the governor.
Rosselló Nevares met this morning with the president of the Senate, Thomas Rivera Schatz; the president of the House, Carlos (Johnny) Méndez; the secretary of State, Luis Rivera Marín; and with the resident commissioner, Jenniffer González, who called in from Washington, D.C.
During the meeting, the first executive informed the legislative leadership that the FOMB has recognized the need to revise its economic projections to temper them to the current reality of Puerto Rico.
The governor affirmed that the adjustments in the area of healthcare contained in the Fiscal Plan that he presented comply with his commitment to guaranteeing access to health services for the most vulnerable.
Likewise, the collection projections were discussed with the commitment to identify an additional $262 million, as requested by the FOMB.
The governor reiterated once again his commitment to keeping an open dialogue between the government’s financial advisors and the FOMB, with the objective of preventing the imposition of measures that limit the provision of essential services and affect the quality of life of the people of Puerto Rico.
“The next hours are of vital importance in the defense of the people of Puerto Rico. My commitment to the people who chose us is to comply with a fiscally
responsible and efficient government in the provision of services to its citizens. The Fiscal Plan that we have presented to the Financial Oversight and Management Board fulfills these purposes. We trust that prudence and wisdom prevail in this process,” expressed the governor.
Meanwhile, the president of the Senate congratulated the governor and his team “for standing firm in the defense of our people, particularly the most vulnerable.”
“Openness to dialogue to explore alternatives is not inconsistent with our governor’s appeal to protect the economically less fortunate. The governor has my full support. Savings and efficiencies can be achieved without imposing excessive burdens on workers, pensioners, or sacrificing health and education services. Puerto Rico is in good hands and the defense of our people is a commitment of the governor and the Legislative Assembly,” stated Rivera Schatz.
Likewise, the House leader said that “we are committed to our public workers in rejecting any reduction of working hours or possible layoffs.”
“This was also the position of the governor during today’s meeting. We support the governor’s initiatives, which are aimed at protecting the most vulnerable, guaranteeing services to the people, and protecting our capacity to develop Puerto Rico’s economy. We have been clear from the outset, the Board’s recommendations are not applicable at this time. Even so, we are working within the House of Representatives to revive the economic engine and promote fiscal control with the goal of returning Puerto Rico to the path of progress,” declared Méndez.