Resolution filed to look into alleged rise in construction material costs
SAN JUAN – Puerto Rico Rep. Joel Franqui has filed Joint House Resolution 877, which orders the Committee on Consumer Affairs, Banking and Insurance to inquire into the construction industry market and determine whether reports of prices being raised for materials in the aftermath of hurricanes Irma and María are valid.
The lawmaker said wood, steel, rebar, zinc, cement and other products used in the construction industry were being marked up.
The cost of construction materials is “rising alarmingly, which has left many people to give up on constructing any project. They have increased surprisingly, preventing–after the passage of hurricanes Irma and Maria, when our citizens were left without a roof and while their homes are under reconstruction–many people from doing their expected reconstructions due to such an incredible increase. This is no time to take advantage of the people,” Franqui said.
“An investigation is essential to determine the impact of construction on profit margins, the impact on the consumer and the steps taken by the Department of Consumer Affairs to control the increase,” added the New Progressive Party majority legislator.
Franqui warned that overpricing could stop construction, and “we’re weeks from the start of the hurricane season,” adding that the issue “is worrying the public; this can even stop several projects.”