San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz has denounced the USA government's decision to end food and water emergency aid to Puerto Rico when almost one-third of the island is still recouping from the effects of Hurricane Maria, which shattered the island in September. In two week his team returns to Puerto Rico.
The Puerto Rico disaster continues on all these months later as the US island territory still struggles with lack of power and water shortages, while the USA mainland efforts to help have either been insufficient or rife with ineptitude and corruption. Had the agency planned to end the assistance, it would have required giving notice to the Puerto Rican government, Mr. Booher noted, which said in a statement on Tuesday that it had been blindsided by the prospect of a cutoff. "I would say it's a 10", he bragged at the time. Reports this week that the agency had said it planned to cut off aid distribution to the storm-ravaged island had alarmed policymakers in Washington and Puerto Rico.
A third of islanders still lack electricity, and some argue it is too early to end emergency aid. Bill Nelson, Marco Rubio and a bipartisan group of Florida House members as well as representatives from other states.
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The members signing the letter included Florida's two US senators, Democrat Bill Nelson and Republican Marco Rubio, and the state's lone USA representative with Puerto Rican roots, Orlando Democrat Darren Soto. Rubio followed Nelson on the Senate floor, urging lawmakers not to forget about disaster relief for Puerto Rico, Florida, Texas and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The agency says it distributed more than 65 million liters of bottled water and more than 58 million meals and snacks, totaling almost $2 billion. The President's words came only hours after the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced it would suspend critical food and water aid to residents of the USA territory. "The President needs to lead and the Congress must act to prevent future loss of life and get Puerto Rico's economy back on its feet". "The reality is that we just need to look around. Our communities will continue to fight the racism and cruelty that has characterized Trump's response to Puerto Rico and fight to ensure all Puerto Ricans have the resources they need to thrive once again". But FEMA claims only about one percent of those in Puerto Rico need the emergency water and food.