Federal agencies and Puerto Rico signed an agreement to speed up $12 billion in disaster recovery funds to strengthen Puerto Rico energy infrastructure. The Departments of Energy, Homeland Security and Housing and Urban Development signed a memorandum with Puerto Rico Governor Pedro Pierluisi. The island suffered more than $100 billion in estimated damages when Hurricanes Maria and Irma struck in 2017.
“The agreement supports rebuilding a Puerto Rico that can withstand future storms and other natural disasters,” said Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA Network, a religious development organization that works with the island’s religious leaders to secure disaster and debt relief. “A modern power grid that meets renewable energy targets and can reduce future risks to the island's economy is critical."
In January, a judge confirmed a settlement that brought Puerto Rico's $72 billion debt to $34 billion. The judge oversees a special bankruptcy process mandated by debt crisis legislation passed by Congress in 2016.
“Puerto Rico's debt deal is based on assumptions that substantial federal aid and disaster relief will continue to reach the island,” noted LeCompte.
Read the full DHS MoU here.
Read Jubilee's press release on Puerto Rico's Debt Deal here.