González announces $95M in federal funds for child care, science, disaster recovery
Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner in Washington, Jenniffer González, announced the allocation of $95.3 million in federal funds from the Department of Health and Human Services for child care services and health services, and from the National Science Foundation for Research and the Agency Federal Emergency Management System for recovery expenses.
The Office of Head Start of the Administration for Children and Families allocated $42.8 million for the Administration for the Care and Integral Development of Children; $12.2 million to the Municipality of Guayama; $7.8 million to the Municipality of Orocovis; $1.6 million to the Christian Military Academy in Vega Baja; $8.0 million to the Municipality of Guaynabo; and $2 million to the Municipality of Isabela.
The Municipality of Humacao received an allocation of $6.4 million under the Disaster Assistance program that provides funds to Head Start Centers. This allocation is part of the recovery funds from the impact of the 2017 hurricanes, which González included in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018.
The funds allocated by HHS under the Health Resources and Services Administration program, the HPM Foundation Inc received $4.9 million and the Costa Health Community Health Center Inc. $2.9 million for health services.
The National Science Foundation approved $335,102 for the research proposal of interdisciplinary and quantitative biology for students of the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus.
These funds are under the Research Experience Program that will help 10 students for nine weeks during the summers between 2019-2021.
The participants will carry out projects that allow the simultaneous exploration of multiple domains of the academic disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), such as the integration of quantitative analysis to understand the changes in the physical and biochemical features of organisms and the use of big data and machine learning approaches to document environmental effects.
It is anticipated that a total of 30 students, primarily from schools with limited research opportunities, will be trained in the program. Students will participate in an academic environment throughout the summer, including presenting their work and achievements in a student hackathon. After participating in the program, students will be encouraged to present their work at national and international conferences.
Under FEMA’s Public Assistance Program $6.8 million have been approved for the Department of Transportation and Public Works with a coverage by FEMA of 90 percent ($6.1 million) under Category Z, reimbursement of administrative expenses.
The funds that FEMA disburses originate from assignments that González has advocated for in Congress, through budget or supplemental assistance for disaster projects. These funds are provided under the Public Assistance program and are available once the recipients complete all the required documentation and after it is reviewed by the government.