Monday, November 29, 2021

Conclave Between Fiscal Board, Rosselló in La Fortaleza

By on January 13, 2017

SAN JUAN — Without prior announcement and under strict security measures, four members of Promesa’s fiscal control board met Friday morning with Gov. Ricardo Rosselló at La Fortaleza.

According to the local government’s representative before the board, Elías Sánchez, the purpose of the meeting was to begin integrating both sides’ groups of advisers to work in coordination on the fiscal plan and debt restructuring.

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As for the extensions requested by the Puerto Rico government to the fiscal plan’s delivery and Promesa’s stay, Sánchez said that the board didn’t comment on the matter since it wasn’t a “meeting to make decisions” and “it had been clear beforehand that it wouldn’t be a deliberative meeting.”

However, the public official acknowledged that the subject was brought to the board’s attention and that the governor “presented the reasons as to why that extension is necessary.”

A spokesperson of the fiscal board told Caribbean Business that with the information discussed today, members will have the assignment of “finishing the analysis over whether to allow the extensions.” Although he couldn’t precise a day for the decision’s announcement, the spokesperson said it would be delivered “very soon.”

For his part, Sánchez said that the government awaits the board’s determination. He added that the Rosselló administration won’t have a fiscal plan ready by Jan. 15, the preliminary deadline imposed by the board to receive a draft of the fiscal plan on behalf of the local government.

“We hope to have presented all information that helps them make the right choice, which is an extension,” Sánchez affirmed as he emphasized that efforts made until this point prove there can be “less give and take” and move toward the same direction.

Board members who attended the meeting —which was confirmed by La Fortaleza as it took place— were its chairman, José Carrión III, Ana Matosantos, Carlos García, and José R. González.

“We have begun dialogue with the board in terms of establishing the work teams that will be coordinating efforts on behalf of the board and the government of Puerto Rico,” Sánchez stated after the meeting, which lasted about an hour. He said that a new meeting has not been scheduled yet, while adding that the board will host its fourth official meeting some time before the end of the month.

The board spokesperson confirmed the meeting will take place before the end of January, but that no further details about its date and location were available at the time.

As to the groups of strategic advisers, Sánchez explained that McKinsey will be working for the board, while the government will be represented by the Financial Advisory & Fiscal Agency Authority as well as an external financial adviser that have yet to be selected. From a legal standpoint, law firms Proskaur Rose and Dentons will coordinate efforts on behalf of the board and government, respectively, the official further said.

Around 11 a.m., Public Affairs Secretary Ramón Rosario confirmed to the press at La Fortaleza that the meeting was being held, although he had no details over the topics being discussed or how many board members were participating of the gathering. Moreover, the governor’s mansion remained under strict security measures throughout the entire morning.

According to Rosario, the conclave began around 10:30 a.m. and about an hour later, Press Secretary Yennifer Álvarez announced it had ended and that the board members weren’t in the executive mansion anymore. None of the board members addressed the press upon their departure.

Although the Public Affairs secretary indicated in the beginning that the meeting was scheduled upon a request from the board, Sánchez said it was solicited by both parties following the Rosselló administration’s letter sent to the board earlier this week.

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