(June 9, 2020- Washington, D.C.) – Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced announced today that she will welcome Rear Admiral Peter J. Brown, White House Special Representative to Puerto Rico, officials from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to the island next week.
“We welcome this visit from Rear Admiral Peter J. Brown and representatives from the different U.S. Federal agencies as Puerto Rico prepares for an active 2020 Hurricane Season,” said Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced. “My Administration will continue to work hand-in-hand with the federal government to ensure that U.S. citizens residing in Puerto Rico have access to the necessary resources in the event of a hurricane.”
In addition, Rear Admiral Brown will participate of other meetings joined by Puerto Rico’s Resident Commissioner, Jenniffer González Colón; the Executive Director of the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration, Jennifer M. Storipan, Esq.; Special Advisor of the White House and Department of Energy, Juan Caro; and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Federal Financial Monitor, Robert M. Couch.
“The White House is committed to the economic and physical recovery of Puerto Rico.” said Rear Admiral Peter J. Brown. “We are working closely with the Governor, the Resident Commissioner, and dozens of federal agencies and departments to ensure that the island is ready for this year’s hurricane season.”
This visit comes as Puerto Rico continues to recover from the 2017 hurricanes, Irma and María; the recent earthquakes that continue to impact the island; and the ongoing Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. The officials are expected to visit the Puerto Rico on Monday, June 15, 2020 – Thursday, June 18, 2020.
Additionally, it will include meetings on Hurricane preparedness for the 2020 Hurricane season with DOE, the United States Coast Guard (USCG), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA), and Puerto Rico Emergency Management Agency (PREMA). The officials will also meet with the Puerto Rico Hospital Association, the Fiscal Agency and Financial Advisory Authority (AAFAF), the Central Office of Recovery, Reconstruction, and Resiliency (COR3), and the United States Department of Agriculture, Rural Development (USDA-RUS).
Furthermore, they will tour the Palo Seco and Costa Sur power plants and visit the municipalities of Ponce and Guayanilla that were impacted by the recent earthquakes. They will also visit the EcoEléctrica Natural Gas Power Plan in Peñuelas, the Wind Farm in Santa Isabel, and the AES Solid-Fueled Power Plan FLOUR. Lastly, they will visit the FEMA Caribbean Distribution Center, the Pharmaceutical Industry Association, the Puerto Rico Manufacturers, and the General Contractors Association.
“As we continue to prepare for the 2020 Hurricane Season, we want to ensure the island has the necessary resources to effectively provide a robust response,” said Jennifer M. Storipan, Esq. “We know this Hurricane season comes with challenging circumstances as Puerto Rico is still recovering from the 2017 hurricanes, ongoing seismic activity, and the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it is with this in mind, that we are preparing, and work is being conducted in conjunction with federal agencies and in partnership with the White House to ensure that officials on the island and residents have access to all available resources they might need. We will continue to respond to the current COVID-19 threat as we prepare for 2020’s hurricane season.”
Vázquez Garced concluded: “President Trump has fully engaged and assisted our island, as we continue to recover from the 2017 hurricanes and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. We look forward to continuing this partnership with his Administration, Admiral Brown, and our Resident Commissioner, Jenniffer González Colón, to continue working for Puerto Rico. As Governor of Puerto Rico, my priority is our people’s welfare, and I will continue to work tirelessly to ensure that our beloved island can fully recover from this COVID-19 pandemic and grow its economy.”