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Pierluisi Would Support Promesa on Certain Conditions

By on May 19, 2016

SAN JUAN—Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner in Washington Pedro Pierluisi said Thursday that he would support the latest version of the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stabilization Act (Promesa) if it meets two principal requisites.

Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner Pedro Pierluisi speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016. (AP : Jacquelyn Martin)

Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner Pedro Pierluisi speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016. (AP : Jacquelyn Martin)

“First of all, the bill has to authorize a just and orderly debt restructuring process, because the alternative is a chaotic process of non-payments followed by litigation that will harm Puerto Rico, government pensioners and the bondholders, many of which are residents on the island,” said Pierluisi.

“Any objective observer, including practically all editorial boards—bet they conservative, moderate and liberal from the main news outlets in the United States—understand that the government of Puerto Rico has to restructure its debts,” he added. “This would ideally [be carried out] through voluntary agreements with creditors, but with access to a process supervised by the federal court in case there are difficulties in the voluntary accords. It is sad we have had to reach this point, but it is the current reality.”  

Second, Pierluisi said that it is inevitable that any federal legislation that grants Puerto Rico the faculty to restructure its debt also establishes a temporary and independent supervising board to assist the commonwealth government to better manage their public finance, balance its budget, be more efficient and transparent, and regain access to financial markets.  

“My requirement from day one has been that the board has to have teeth, but not fangs,” he indicated. “In other words, that it has the authority to supervise but not to order and control the government of Puerto Rico during a limited time period. I have worked with the U.S. House Speaker, Paul Ryan, and the House Natural Resources Committee Chair, Rob Bishop, to ensure that the proposal takes into consideration these conditions.”

 

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