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Velázquez on Jones Act Waiver for Puerto Rico

Velázquez on Jones Act Waiver for Puerto Rico
September 28, 2017
Press Release

Washington, DC –Rep. Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY) issued the following statement today regarding President Trump’s decision to waive the Jones Act for ten days for Puerto Rico: 

            “For an entire week, the President was touting his concern for the shipping industry, while refusing to suspend the Jones Act. Meanwhile, the people of Puerto Rico have been facing a catastrophic humanitarian crisis. Millions of American citizens are without food, water and electricity. Now, the President’s change of heart is too little, too late.

            “A ten-day waiver, as the Administration has announced, is far from sufficient given the scope of this tragedy.  Moreover, as Puerto Rico begins the long road of rebuilding, it will be difficult to do so if building supplies cost double what they are priced on the mainland. To that end, I repeat my previous call for a one-year waiver of the Jones Act.  Puerto Rico’s economy was already suffering immensely before Maria and its economy will undoubtedly be devastated from the hurricane. If there were ever a time to consider a longer term suspension of the Jones Act for Puerto Rico, this would be it.”