Gov. Ricardo Rosselló met with the Democratic Hispanic Caucus in Congress to discuss the effects that the federal tax reform will have on the island and the need for Puerto Rico to receive equal treatment in the supplementary relief bill, after the disaster caused by Hurricane María.
Participants included José Serrano (D-NY), Darren Soto (D-FL), Raúl Ruiz (D-CA), Tony Cardenas (D-CA), and the president of the Caucus, Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-NM). The Hispanic caucus agreed with the governor that the jobs created in Puerto Rico are American jobs and therefore must be protected.
In addition, a new tax on the island would distress the economy, contrary to the provisions of the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management and Economic Stability Act approved by Congress and which is supposed to contribute to the island’s economic development.
At the same time, the Hispanic Caucus showed its support for Puerto Rico to be treated in the same way as other United States jurisdictions affected by natural disasters during the discussion of the supplemental package that is expected to be approved in the coming days.
Meanwhile, Rosselló and 11 Puerto Rico mayors met separately with House Appropriations Committee Chair Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ).
The Republican congressman confirmed the importance of ensuring equal treatment for Puerto Rico in supplementary aid after the devastation caused by Hurricane María.
Similarly, Frelinghuysen agreed with the governor that approving additional taxes for the island as a result of the federal tax reform would distress Puerto Rico’s economy.
Rosselló and the municipal executives also met with House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA,) as well as Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez (D-NY), Congressman José Serrano (D-NY), and Congressman Luis Gutiérrez (D-IL.) They all expressed their support for Puerto Rico’s plight.
Gutiérrez confirmed that after the passage of Hurricane María, the city of Chicago has received hundreds of Puerto Ricans.
For his part, Serrano said that the devastation caused by the atmospheric phenomenon has attracted the attention of the United States Congress, which previously did not discuss or had knowledge of the challenges Puerto Rico is facing.
The mayors that went to Congress with Rosselló were: Javier García (Aguas Buenas); Carlos Molina (Arecibo); Ramón Luis Rivera (Bayamón); Lornna Soto (Canóvanas); Felix “El Cano” Delgado (Cataño); Aníbal Meléndez (Fajardo); Ángel Pérez (Guaynabo); Miguel A. López (Las Piedras); Noé Marcano (Naguabo); Jesús “Gardy” Colón (Orocovis); and, María “Mayita” Meléndez (Ponce.)