OGP Director Reiterates there is no Money for February Payroll
SAN JUAN – The director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), José Marrero, said Tuesday that the government doesn’t have enough money to pay February’s payroll; however, he assured that Gov. Ricardo Rosselló is actively working on finding a solution.
Marrero couldn’t provide an exact estimate of the amount needed to cover next month’s payroll, but pointed out that it will affect the entire government.
“That [the government-wide issue] is one of the critical areas, and it is being dealt with urgently by the Treasury Department and Puerto Rico’s governor,” Marrero said during a WKAQ 580 radio interview.
Marrero also indicated that his office has been focusing on working with various agency chiefs and finance directors to train and align the agencies’ policies, as well as to save money.
The OMB chief said Rosselló’s priority is to implement the policies laid out in his executive order to reduce agency spending, with the objective of an initial 10% saving in operational expenses.
However, Marrero acknowledged that his office doesn’t have the tools needed to verify if the island’s agencies comply with the established objective. He mentioned technological “issues” as obstacles.
“During the transition process, we realized that Puerto Rico’s government doesn’t have a tool, a mechanism to follow up on agencies’ expenses…. Technically, it is a manual process,” he said.