Nearly 20,000 People to Receive their Reimbursements this Week
SAN JUAN – Puerto Rico Treasury Secretary Juan Zaragoza said Monday that about 20,000 people will be receiving their tax return reimbursements this week, representing some $15 million.
Zaragoza said Treasury has reimbursed 68 percent of all tax returns, which represents about $55 million. The remaining 32 percent is expected to be paid by February at the latest.
On Dec. 30, Gov. Alejandro García Padilla announced that Puerto Rico would not pay creditors more than $35 million to allow the government to reimburse taxes and have funds to pay its suppliers.
During a press conference at La Fortaleza, García Padilla had said the measure “is a default allowed by the Constitution,” adding it helps avoid a “general default.”
García Padilla had said, “We cannot pay $35.9 million in interest on AFI [Infrastructure Financing Authority] bonds, and those bonds are not guaranteed by the Government of Puerto Rico.
“We also are not going to pay, because we do not have the resources, $1.4 million of the Public Financing Corp., totaling $64 million we have not paid since July 1st.”
“The decision allows for the ability to pay tax reimbursements little by little, as well as suppliers. [The burden] cannot fall only on Puerto Ricans, that is why bondholders are beginning to become part of the responsibility. I reiterate our claim to the [U.S.] Congress: We would not be giving this news if it had taken action,” the governor said.