Washington, D.C. Office

Washington, D.C. Office

We cannot neglect the role Washington D.C. plays in Puerto Rico’s affairs.

In 2016 all three branches of the federal government took action related to Puerto Rico.  The judicial branch, through two separate rulings issued by the U.S. Supreme Court, opined that Puerto Rico is not a sovereign territory and ultimately responds to the plenary powers of the U.S. Congress.  The legislative branch authored and voted for the Puerto Rico Oversight Management and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA) allowing the island to access a comprehensive restructuring process, under the purview of a seven-member oversight board.  Finally, the executive branch signed the law and subsequently appointed members to the oversight board.

It was evident this turning point underscored the need for a think tank dedicated to the island’s issues to be present in Washington D.C. and lend its voice to federal policymakers. CNE is doing just that, becoming the principal non-political voice from Puerto Rico and a resource for knowledge and information. It channels its expertise through distinguished analysis and fact-based advocacy. With its office in D.C., we expect to get the U.S. Congress, the executive branch and federal agencies to focus on the right issues and make progress for CNE’s only client: Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico: Highlights of the Build Back Better Bill

There is a lot of activity going on in Washington, D.C. these days. Back in August, the Senate approved a $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill. That bill, however, has been on hold in the House, as Democrats negotiated amongst themselves the contents of the Build Back Better ("BBB") bill. We are still combing through the text, but to keep you informed, we wanted to share some of the key points in the BBB bill regarding Puerto Rico as of today.
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The American Rescue Plan Includes Proposal From CNE

Within his first week in office, President Biden laid out his priorities for the American Rescue Plan. The emergency legislation seeks to address the public health crisis and mitigate the nefarious effects of the COVID pandemic on individuals, schools, communities, and businesses.
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2020 Funding Showdown

Last night President Trump took to Twitter to threaten with a Presidential veto the long-awaited COVID relief bill. The current short-term continuing resolution (CR) also expires next Tuesday, December 29, meaning that Congress has little time to make adjustments to the Covid relief bill.
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PROMESA’s New Board

During the past couple of weeks, plenty has been inferred over the future composition of Puerto Rico’s new Financial Management and Oversight Board. In this post we shed some color on the appointments process and what is before the U.S. government at this time. 
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Correcting Historically Discriminatory Policies Against Residents of U.S. Territories

For decades, Puerto Rico and the other U.S. territories have been deprived of access to federal programs specifically designed to provide a safety net, break persistent poverty cycles and jumpstart the economy. These limitations unfairly discriminate against the residents of U.S. territories and perpetuate long-standing inequities. Three recent court decisions suggest discriminatory policies against the residents of U.S. territories will no longer stand.
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Impact of the SSI in Puerto Rico

The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program is not available to residents of Puerto Rico, Guam or the U.S. Virgin Islands. Two recent court rulings have found this categorical exclusion of the residents of Puerto Rico and Guam to be unconstitutional. We take a closer look at the impact the SSI program could have for Puerto Rico’s residents and the potential economic benefits associated with it.
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Additional Content from the D.C. Team

Puerto Rico: Highlights of the Build Back Better Bill

There is a lot of activity going on in Washington, D.C. these days. Back in August, the Senate approved a $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill. That bill, however, has been on hold in the House, as Democrats negotiated amongst themselves the contents of the Build Back Better ("BBB") bill. We are still combing through the text, but to keep you informed, we wanted to share some of the key points in the BBB bill regarding Puerto Rico as of today.
Read More

Standing Up for Puerto Rico in Washington, D.C.

In a short three years, CNE has not only elevated and persuaded Congress and the Executive to more adequately address Puerto Rico’s challenges, but it has achieved substantial changes in federal law.
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The Threefold Challenge to the Puerto Rican Economy

The Puerto Rican economy is simultaneously recovering from three systemic shocks: the COVID-19 pandemic, the considerable damage inflicted by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, and the upcoming creditor's vote on the Plan of Adjustment negotiated by the FOMB.
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The Medicaid Five-Year Deal

H.R. 4406 helps Puerto Rico avoid a short-term Medicaid funding cliff and provides some stability by setting forth clear funding levels for the next five years. However, the proposed five-year deal falls short of parity with the states, is not a permanent fix, and perpetuates the “separate and unequal” treatment of Medicaid beneficiaries in the territories, who are being told, once again, to accept a “good enough” deal.
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PROMESA: A Failed Colonial Experiment?

On June 30, 2016, President Obama signed into law the Puerto Rico Oversight and Management Economic Stability Act. As we look back and take stock of the events that have taken place since 2016, the unavoidable conclusion is that the territorial bankruptcy regime set up by that law has failed to achieve most of the goals set forth by its authors.
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Oversight or Punishment?

Last week, the Office of the Inspector General of the HUD released a 45-page report which detailed the multiple instances when the political leadership in OMB, a critical control center within the Executive Office of the President, purposefully delayed processes to release disaster aid.
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