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Puerto Rico gov’t introduces amended reorganization plans to Legislature

By on February 28, 2018

SAN JUAN — Public Affairs & Public Policy Secretary Ramón Rosario announced Wednesday that the three reorganization plans that were withdrawn for changes agreed upon with lawmakers and hearing witnesses have been reintroduced.

“At the beginning of January, we submitted five reorganization plans, of which two were approved by the House of Representatives and the Senate,” Rosario said.

The government’s revised fiscal plan establishes that agency consolidation measures must achieve total annual savings of $620 million by fiscal year 2023.

The official said the Economic Development & Trade Department’s Reorganization Plan was amended to provide for a Tourism Office executive director as part of the framework of the consolidated structure.

The Board of Education’s Reorganization Plan was amended to establish the board’s functions in the state Department instead of the Education Department.

Finally, Reorganization Plan 5 of the Public Service Regulatory Board was amended to establish fixed terms for the commissioners of the three bureaus and board members.

In addition, the commissioners that will compose the New Bureau of the Energy Commission and three commissioners of the telecommunications and public service bureaus are increased to five.

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The changes are part of recommendations to ensure officials’ independence in the oversight of telecommunications, energy and public service.

Senate President Thomas Rivera Schatz stated that “the revision made to the plans correctly addresses the concerns of various sectors and the Senate will approve them.”

Meanwhile, House Speaker Carlos Méndez explained that the changes “address all the concerns of the body I preside and will be approved as soon as possible because they have gone through the public hearings process.”

Rosario added that “no other government consolidation and transformation has been directed with the haste and attention that this administration has with these New Government measures. The legislative process has improved the [legislative] pieces and we hope each one is realized to have a more efficient and less expensive government.”

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