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Resident Commissioner aims to ensure FEMA funds for Puerto Rico

By on March 27, 2017

SAN JUAN – Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González said Monday she intends to present measures to the Fiscal Oversight & Management Board that would ensure Puerto Rico access to federal funds such as those provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

“The funds allocated by FEMA are a priority and must be a priority for the board, so I will put together efforts to grant a waiver of the requirement of state-matched funds to receive federal funds in some agencies that already assign them to Puerto Rico. On that proposal, I will speak to the board on Friday about this proposal,” González Colon said.

Jenniffer Gonzalez FEMA

Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González spent the weekend on the island campaigning for statehood ahead of the June 11 political-status referendum. (CyberNews Photo)

During a meeting with Alejandro de la Campa, executive director of FEMA’s Caribbean Division, the resident commissioner discussed possible measures in light of the Puerto Rico government’s new budget, which must be approved by the fiscal board, and the federal agency’s preventive emergency plans.

They also discussed flood insurance coverage and its effectiveness, as well as the inspection process of projects and compliance to prevent indications that could endanger access to these federal funds.

They said that because of lack of action by the Port Authority, the island didn’t receive $15 million in resources during the last administration, but that they are working this year on the matter.

See also: Resident Commissioner proposes Puerto Rico receive equal treatment in CTC

The release also points that the plan to handle catastrophes is ready, and the process of identifying quick-response emergency agencies and entities is underway.

FEMA has $126 million approved in ongoing projects for mitigation and emergency prevention. For the island-wide blackout in September last year, the federal agency was activated as support for hospitals and water stations.

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