This Friday Nov. 18, the US Financial Control Board will hold its first meeting in Puerto Rico. It will occur at 8:30 am, in the luxurious Conquistador Hotel.
The choice of venue is significant: the Conquistador is located in Fajardo…35 miles from San Juan and the demonstrators at El Campamento. There is only one major entrance to the hotel, atop a long steep hill. In other words, this will be a “Members Only” meeting of the FCB.
This “Members Only” approach is consistent with the FCB policy toward the general public….because their meetings are closed to the public. Even though Puerto Rican taxpayers are paying $370 million for the FCB’s expenses, those taxpayers are not allowed to attend the FCB meetings.
They can watch selected portions of the meetings…afterwards…on the internet.
They can also view photos of the Conquistador Hotel, to see how their money is being spent…before and after the meetings.
Since the FCB rejected Gov. Garcia-Padilla’s financial plan in its entirety, it will now wait two months for Gov. Roselló to take office…and even longer for Roselló’s financial plan to be developed.
In the meantime, the FCB will continue to meet in private, in luxury hotels, while Puerto Rico suffers through its worst economic crisis in nearly a century.
WHAT WAS THE RUSH?
All of this leads to some questions…what was all the rush about?
Why did the US Congress need to rush the passage of PROMESA?
Why did they hurry to appoint a seven-member board, that will now meet in luxury hotels, and wait several months for the next governor to deliver a fiscal plan?
There is no sensible answer, but there is a political one.
They rushed because they feared an electoral meltdown in November 2016.
They believed that Hillary would win…by such a large margin, that a Democratic majority might overtake the US Senate.
For this reason, they rushed to create a PROMESA that was friendly to lobbyists and hedge funds, and a Control Board controlled by Republicans.
And now Puerto Rico is stuck…
Waiting for a governor with no government experience…
To deliver a “Fiscal Plan” that will actually be written…
In Wall Street and Washington, D.C.
For a history of the War Against All Puerto Ricans, read the book…
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