January 25, 2018

Economists say to consider Puerto Rico’s debt unpayable

National Institute for Latino Policy - A group of 26 renowned economists and academics called on President Donald Trump and Congress to provide a fiscal plan for Puerto Rico that recognizes that the public debt of $72 billion is unpayable, that austerity cannot be an alternative and requires economic injection measures for the Island, such as parity in Medicaid and access to tax credits.

"The new plan for Puerto Rico must address the devastation caused by the hurricane and the problems that caused the previous deterioration of the economy. The plan must be fundamentally different from the previous one so that Puerto Rico has a chance of recovery," wrote the economists and academics in an open letter released today.

The proposals include that Congress grant full access to the island with federal tax credits for dependent children and earned income tax credits, issues that Puerto Rican authorities have claimed had won support from the government of President Barack Obama.

They also asked that parity be granted in the Medicaid and Medicare programs, as supported by the now ex-president Obama. The federal policy of inequity in access to these health programs, they argue, "has contributed in billions of dollars to the debt of Puerto Rico."

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