Bill filed to repeal Act 22 of individual investor incentives
SAN JUAN — Popular Democratic Party (PDP) Rep. Manuel Natal announced Tuesday the filing of the House Bill 840, which seeks to repeal Act 22 of 2012, the law to encourage individual investors to move to Puerto Rico.
“Puerto Rico is experiencing its worst fiscal and economic crisis. While the [Gov. Ricardo] Rosselló Administration asks workers, students and elderly people to sacrifice more, it exempts the rich from paying taxes. Allowing a millionaire to move to Puerto Rico and that for simply living here 183 days a year is exempt from paying contributions is offensive against those who spent our entire life here and make our fair contribution,” the legislator denounced in a written statement.
Natal said the purpose of his measure is to prevent Puerto Rico from becoming a tax haven for U.S. citizens. The bill, which was filed Feb. 27, intends to stop an alleged tax evasion scheme promoted by the government that provides benefits to the sectors that have contributed least to the economic and fiscal crisis that afflicting island.
Regarding the financial benefits for Puerto Rico afforded by Act 22, Natal argued these have not been significant, as evinced by deposit and liquidity data offered by the Financial Institutions Commissioner’s Office (OCIF by its Spanish acronym) and that bank deposits in Puerto Rico continue to drop.
“Deposits at commercial banks continue to plunge despite the passage of this law in 2012. This law was approved on the grounds that it would promote bank recapitalization to obtain the liquidity necessary to continue granting loans and opening lines of credit for families and businesses. However, this has not been reflected in the financial data published by OCIF,” he concluded.