Puerto Rico Agriculture Secretary details changes to incentives
To be issued quarterly based on production estimates
SAN JUAN — The secretary of the Puerto Rico Department of Agriculture, Carlos Flores Ortega, described Tuesday the parameters under which the new production incentive will be granted, replacing after more than 30 years the subsidy granted by the agency to producers.
“With the code, we have a tool to measure the effectiveness of the incentive on agricultural production and adopt the strategies that are necessary after an analysis of the results, so that the money of the people of Puerto Rico that is put into agriculture, has a return on investment and promotes growth in the local food production,” Flores Ortega said in a statement.
The secretary’s remarks regarding the transition from subsidy to incentive come after the recent signing of Act 60 by Gov. Ricardo Rosselló Nevares, which formalized the new Puerto Rico Incentives Code and joins the efforts of the Economic Development and Commerce Department, the Department of Agriculture and other agencies to measure the return on investment after granting public funds and to stimulate, through various strategies, the development of the local economy.
With regard to the documents needed to process a payment certification, the Agriculture official explained that agency agronomists will require the following documents from farmers to process the payment of the production incentive, corresponding from January to March and April to June:
- The monthly Sales and Use (IVU by its Spanish acronym) Tax Form (Model SC 2915) of sales made.
- The Farmer Sales Report (ADEA-PSS-05). This document is provided by Administration for the Development of Agricultural Enterprises (Adea by its Spanish acronym), so an accountant can break down the direct sales of agricultural products. In addition, the document details the names, postal address and telephone number of the buyers and the signature of the accountant who completes the said document.
- Tax return for quarter 19-1 and 19-2 of the Department of Labor and Human Resources of the Government of Puerto Rico (unemployment policy), at the time of certifying the production corresponding to the third and fourth quarter 2019.
- At the beginning of the fiscal year or when the farmer begins to participate in the program, the documents evidencing compliance with the provisions of Act 46 of Aug. 5, 1946, must be delivered. In addition, evidence of having acquired crop, plantations and/or agricultural structure insurance for which payment of the incentive is requested.
The secretary said each enterprise will have a formula for the payment of their incentives after a study is conducted by an agricultural economist and the value of hours, tons, pounds, quintals (46 kilograms), cuerdas (0.97 acres) and any other measurement used is determined.
Flores said the department’s agronomists will be visiting farms throughout the year to estimate the production of each and issue the corresponding incentives every three months based on a production estimate.