Government of Puerto Rico applies measures against covid and to recover economy

Government of Puerto Rico applies measures against covid and to recover economy

San Juan.- The governor of Puerto Rico, Pedro Pierluisi, announced more restrictive measures to combat the rebound in COVID-19, vaccination for those over 16 years of age starting on the 12th of this month, a reinforcement of initiatives to rebuild the economy and the objective of achieving full annexation to the United States.

Pierluisi offered his first status message on Wednesday since he was sworn into office in January this year, a speech before the Legislative Assembly in which he highlighted as a priority the implementation of measures to combat the coronavirus and served to announce the construction of a new Trauma Hospital resistant to earthquakes and other disasters.

I have not brought magic wands or grandiose promises. What I am bringing you is seriousness, maturity and a firm commitment, “said Pierluisi in his speech, during which the legislator of the opposition Popular Democratic Party (PPD) José Rivera took out a banner to protest the situation of southern schools of the island affected by the 2020 earthquakes that cannot yet receive students.

The governor, who said that the health situation in the face of covid-19 is “promising”, did not hesitate to acknowledge a “dangerous rebound” that requires measures so that the pandemic does not take more lives than the 2,139 dead and the y 99,847 infected.

To do this, he announced that the curfew will return from this Friday between 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m., that commercial establishments will close at 9 p.m. and the prohibition of activities that involve the agglomeration of people.

IMMUNIZATIONS FOR OVER 16 YEARS OLD

He also announced that it is included in the new executive order that he will issue to stop the rise in infections due to covid-19, which as of Monday, everyone over 16 years of age can be vaccinated.

“We are fortunate that the United States government has treated Puerto Rico with equality when it comes to sending us the covid vaccines,” he said.

He highlighted that as part of the federal funds assigned to Puerto Rico for the management of the pandemic, 20 million will be allocated for the genomic surveillance program in the Department of Health that allows the different variants of the coronavirus to be identified.

Pierluisi reserved an important part of his speech to the crucial issue of the economy, badly hit by this pandemic and which had already experienced a weakness that continues in a crisis that has lasted for more than a decade.

50 MILLION ALLOCATED TO THE RESTORATION SECTOR

To alleviate the impact of business closures, he announced that 50 million dollars will be allocated to the restaurant and bar industry, another 50 million so that face-to-face classes can be resumed at the University of Puerto Rico (UPR), 15 million to non-profit organizations that provide direct services to citizens and 162 million to improve the digital capacity of the Government.

The president recalled that he presented a budget of 10,712 million dollars from the General Fund before the Board of Fiscal Supervision (JSF), the federal control entity to the Executive of San Juan.

“Although it is expected that these figures will undergo changes based on the macroeconomic adjustments to the fiscal plan, we will ensure that the budget has the necessary resources so that the government continues to provide the essential services that the people require,” he said.

He highlighted the creation of the State Revolving Fund with 750 million, which will allow access to capital to start state and municipal projects.

Regarding economic development, the governor reiterated his commitment to manufacturing and making Puerto Rico an option of interest for the establishment of a biomedical manufacturing industry worldwide.

PROBLEMS IN THE EDUCATIONAL SECTOR

He acknowledged the problems facing the public education system, whose work has been interrupted by the earthquakes and the pandemic, after highlighting the reopening of some 100 schools for the first time in a year.

In addition, he indicated that 6 million will be allocated to eradicate gender violence and 650,000 dollars for the Office of the Ombudsman for Women.

The governor did not forget the issue of the island’s political status and said there is a broad consensus among citizens to “end the colony,” as he understands the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

He recalled in this regard that in the elections last November – in which a consultation on the status was also held – the option of full integration of the island into the United States was the winner.

“The majority called for ‘statehood’ – annexation – and we must assert the will of our people,” he stressed.

While the president spoke inside the chamber of the House of Representatives, several unions were demonstrating, among them the Union of Workers of the Irrigation and Electricity Industry (Utier), to request the cancellation of the contract with LUMA Energy to operate the electricity grid. from June.

Pierluisi defended that contract and handing over the administration of electricity transmission and distribution is part of the transformation necessary to have a modern system.

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Melissa Galbraith
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.