Sunday, November 17, 2019

Senate President Expects Tough Debate if Fiscal Control Board Imposed

By on March 14, 2016

SAN JUAN – Senate President Eduardo A. Bhatia insisted Monday on his rejection of a fiscal control board with powers that “the people of Puerto Rico delegated to democratically elected officials.”
Saying he believes the U.S. Supreme Court will decide within the next 60 days on Puerto Rico’s status and the ability of the island’s Legislature to regulate its “bankruptcy,” the Senate leader added that he anticipates the U.S. Congress “will try to impose a strong fiscal control board that takes over the legislative function to create a budget.”

During a Senate session, he forewarned of a strong reaction from the Legislature, especially the Senate, if a fiscal control board is imposed. “One thing is a fiscal oversight board and another thing is a fiscal control board that takes over decision-making about what is done with Puerto Rico’s money. I do not embrace a fiscal control board because democracy cannot be ceded, democracy cannot be handed over that way. The decision on how we will work with these funds has to come from the people of Puerto Rico, made by the leaders elected by the people of Puerto Rico,” he said.

He also predicted intense days of debate that, given the extent of the government’s obligations to its creditors, “We’ll have to make a number of additional decisions to condition and put the country in the right situation to face what is coming, which is a large payment in May and a huge payment of general obligations on the first day of July.

“Unless Congress makes the determinations it has to make, the determination must be…that the government of Puerto Rico not pay that, and at some point we will have to talk about that issue and at some point we will have to discuss, analyze and decide it as a country,” Bhatia concluded.

4 Comments

  1. John Smith

    March 14, 2016 at 8:27 pm

    If they default all federal funding meant for Puerto Rico should be redirected to bond holders!

  2. Richard Lawless

    March 14, 2016 at 8:39 pm

    Funny, the politicians and government employees steal billions in tax payer funds and insist on a bail out under their conditions. LOL Good Luck

  3. Chris

    March 14, 2016 at 9:23 pm

    Firstly I seriously doubt SCOTUS is going to touch the status issue. It’s most likely going to be a narrow, technical based ruling based around the Double Jeopardy clause. Chief Justice Roberts himself even said during the hearing that the court wants to focus more on the Double Jeopardy aspect rather than on the status issue, in fact he specifically asked the two sides to stop bringing it up.

    Secondly, what does the Puerto Rico legislature have to do with a FEDERALLY imposed Federal Control Board? Congress doesent have to ask the Puerto Ricans for permission. Bhatia, Perello, and Agapito have no say over whether or not Congress imposes a control board. It’s out of their hands, they should have thought about this when they deviated from the strict fiscal regime implemented by Fortuno and the NPP as soon as they took office in 2013. This is all on them. They caused this with their reckless spending.

  4. Errol

    March 14, 2016 at 10:26 pm

    What nerve to be indignant that Congress may take over control of Puerto Rico’s finances!

    Bhatia and the rest of the Puerto Rico politicians are the very people whose incompetence, wastefulness, and corruption caused the financial catastrophe that is Puerto Rico.

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