Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Puerto Rico government holds fiscal policy summit

By on October 10, 2019

Elí Díaz Atienza, Gov. Wanda Vázquez and Omar Marrero (CyberNews)

Gov, agencies discuss progress of measures to reduce expenditures

SAN JUAN – Puerto Rico Gov. Wanda Vázquez, along with her administration’s chief financial officer, Omar J. Marrero, brought together Thursday agency heads at the Puerto Rico Convention Center to implement the fiscal plan and review the progress of the cost reduction measures and budgetary controls at the respective entities.

CFO Marrero, who is also the executive director of the Fiscal Agency and Financial Advisory Authority (Aafaf by its Spanish acronym) explained that the conference, called the First Fiscal Public Policy Summit, “is part of the administration’s multiple efforts to disseminate and strengthen, among others matters, each of the specific measures contained in the Fiscal Plan and the implications of the Fiscal Oversight Board’s Adjustment Plan,” reads a release issued by the governor’s office, La Fortaleza.

“Our administration is focused on leading Puerto Rico towards economic sustainability through strict compliance with fiscal and budgetary adjustments. It is important that all government entities comply with their fiscal responsibility measures and the information requirements formulated by both the [board] and the fiscal and financial agencies of the Government. Puerto Rico deserves to have visibility of public finances, transparency and accountability,” the governor said.

The summit was led by the governor’s fiscal and economic team, among which were present the government representative to the board, Elí Díaz Atienza; Treasury Secretary Francisco Parés; the executive director of the Office of Management and Budget, Iris Santos; and the executive director of the Central Office of Recovery, Reconstruction and Resilience, Ottmar Chávez.

The Opportunity Zone Summit was held afterward with the majority of the island’s mayors. The governor was accompanied by the Opportunity Zones Priority Projects Committee Senate President Thomas Rivera Schatz and House Speaker Carlos “Johnny” Méndez.

“The knowledge and collaboration of our mayors is key o successfully promote the Opportunity Zones Program because it is they who keep an inventory of the assets available in their municipalities. This meeting served to present to all of them the scope of this legislation that is part of the Incentives Code,” Vázquez said.

“Our main interest is that our mayors get involved and understand the benefit this program provides as a unique opportunity for the economic development of their municipalities. Both the Committee and this public servant will continue to collaborate with our mayors and legislators to attract local and foreign investment in key projects of economic growth and infrastructure,” said the CFO and chairman of the Priority Projects Committee.

The release said the governor stressed that the administration’s efforts will continue, and Aafaf and the Office of the CFO “are responsible for ensuring compliance with fiscal responsibility and economic development measures.”