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Minority Leader: Executive Orders Should Have Been Consulted with Legislature

By on January 2, 2017

SAN JUAN—House Minority Leader Rafael “Tatito” Hernández Montañez criticized Gov. Ricardo Rosselló Nevares Monday for signing executive orders that, he said, should have been first consulted with the Legislature.

House Minority Leader Rafael “Tatito” Hernández Montañez (CB file)

In a statement, the Popular Democratic Party minority leader said the orders will have an impact on government finances and the economy of Puerto Rico.

“We are in the best disposition to collaborate with the new administration to deal with Puerto Rico’s fiscal situation, and for that reason a transparent communication with the legislative branch is important. Our system of representative democracy has been lacerated over the past 12 years, becoming the [democracy’s] Achilles’ heel. It is important to learn from the mistakes that brought us here and to maintain respect and deference with all elected officials. Keeping an honest communication advances much more than the arbitrary force of executive orders,” Hernández Montañez said.

“The way in which the Executive Orders were issued, gives the impression that the new governor is attempting to govern by decree without even counting on the senators and representatives of the New Progressive Party (NPP). For example: the right way to establish a zero-based budget is by introducing legislation to transform the current system. That was not done [here],” he said.

He also noted that new governor delegated certain powers to the Financial Oversight Board without the advice and consent of the Legislature.

Regarding an Executive Order that declared an infrastructure emergency and activated an expedited permitting process, Hernández Montañez said that the measure ignored the legal safeguards to prevent acts of corruption and the development of projects that could have a negative impact in communities.

“Let there be no doubt that this delegation of the Popular Democratic Party in the House of Representatives will be vigilant and will point out every injustice committed by the incoming government,” Hernández Montañez added.

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