Puerto Rico energy policy bill does not make it through session
SAN JUAN – The legislation that would create new public energy policy in Puerto Rico did not complete the legislative process because the House of Representatives requested additional time to evaluate the measure.
Unless the governor calls on the legislature to conduct an extraordinary session, the measure will have to wait until the next regular session in January. In the coming days, lawmakers will be dedicated to resolving their differences in measures passed by both chambers before going into recess.
The Senate bill would establish the exclusive use of renewable energy sources on the island by 2050 and dismantle the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s (Prepa) monopoly.
“We understand and respect the additional time requested by the House of Representatives to evaluate Senate Bill 1121, via which the ‘Puerto Rico Energy Policy Act’ is adopted. The preparation of a public energy policy for Puerto Rico is critical for our future. We also take the opportunity to thank the work of the past months in the Senate Energy Commission in preparing such project as contemplated in Act 120-2018,” the executive director of the Fiscal Agency and Financial Advisory Authority, Christian Sobrino, said in a statement.
“The governor has a clear vision of where we are going in the transformation of what has been an inefficient energy system. We have expressed to Senator Larry Seilhamer and Representative Víctor Parés Otero that, although we will continue with the privatization of PREPA, as authorized by Act 120-2018, we will not formalize contracts that could be contrary to the public policy established by the chief executive or the cardinal principles of the law being drafted in the Legislature. The new energy system will be less expensive, resilient and safe for our people,” Sobrino added.