The last ordinary session of the quadrennium ended tonight with the approval of several measures in the conference committee, including the Municipal Code. However, the project of the so-called Worthy Retirement, by the representative Lourdes Ramos, was hung, and there was no agreement between the legislative bodies on the budget.
According to popular senator José Nadal Power, it emerged from the discussion in the Senate that the Worthy Retirement project, whose possible approval caused dozens of public employees to camp outside the Capitol for the past few days, could threaten certain contractual commitments related to debt issued . Popular senator Cirilo Tirado added that the project creates the Trust for the Joint Administration of Retirement Systems, an organism that is given certain powers that should only be in the hands of the courts.
The House Bill 2434 sought to declare a public policy of zero cuts to pensions and to unify most retirement systems.
Regarding the Municipal Code, representative Reinaldo Vargas, president of the Chamber’s Municipal Affairs Commission, indicated that the Senate accepted the changes included by the House of Representatives in matters such as the elimination of the so-called telecommunications tax and salary increases for certain mayors. A language was also included to prevent unfair competition between municipal corporations and small and medium-sized private businesses.
The project that extends the deadline until December 31 so that qualified doctors can request the 4% preferential tax rate and the Senate 1616 that establishes an incentive retirement window for certain public employees with pensions equivalent to 50% of the highest gross annual compensation accrued in the last three years.
On this measure, a change was included so that all beneficiaries under Law 447-1951 had contributed no less than 20 years of service as of June 30, 2017. The original project provided that they would be no less than 15 years as of June 20, June 2020. In the case of those covered under Law 1-1990, they will have to list no less than 15 years as of June 30, 2017.
At the end of the kilometer session at 12:00 am, the project was also approved that gives customers an annual credit of 5% of the total invoiced in a calendar year for electrical energy, to all residential customers who pay all of your service invoice within the first 15 days of issue.
Tonight an agreement was also reached on the Joint Resolution of the House 731 and the Joint Resolution of the Senate 559 so that the legislative bodies each distribute $ 3.4 million – the original language provided that they were $ 3.7 million – from the Municipal Improvement Fund and also An agreement was reached on the Senate Joint Resolution 534, which proposes to reduce by 50% and for a period of 120 days the tax paid by imported new and used cars, in addition to commercial vehicles and trucks introduced from abroad, all due to the crisis caused by COVID-19.
The Fiscal Oversight Board has been expressed against this measure due to its fiscal impact.
The legislative chambers also agreed on the extension for an additional 60 days on the moratorium on the payment of traffic fines and a bill that increases the age of victims from 18 years to 21 years from which to begin to calculate the statute of limitations for sexual crimes. This measure also obliges all computer technicians, under pain of a fine and prison time, to report to the Police “if as part of their ordinary job functions they find child pornographic material in any of the computers in which they are working.”
This language will not apply to the use of tablets, cell phones and pocket computers.
Also tonight, a bill was passed that limits advertising spending in the Executive Branch to 1% of the agency’s total budget. The limit will not apply to the Tourism Company, the Health, Finance, State, Public Safety, Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, and Economic Development and Commerce departments. Nor would the limit apply to the Office of the Ombudsman for People with Disabilities, the Office of the Women’s Prosecutor, the Institute of Culture and the State Election Commission.
Likewise, tonight the legislative bodies gave way to a project that allows the use of what is known as the advanced electronic signature in the granting of public documents before a notary. Earlier in the day, legislative chambers agreed on the language of various measures, such as the one created by the Deaf Community Liaison Office in government.
“This measure addresses a complaint from the deaf community. It establishes a Liaison Office for deaf people before the Government. It will have the responsibility of being an interlocutor between deaf people and government services, based on sensitivity and respect for the culture of the deaf. We are Speaking of about $ 250,000 deaf people, “said Senator Juan Dalmau Ramírez, author of the measure.
The Chamber and Senate also agreed on the project that gives government retirees a 25% discount on the purchase of the Internal Revenue voucher required to request the official Identification Card issued by the State. The position of the Fiscal Oversight Board (JSF) regarding the fiscal impact of the measure is unknown.
Legislative bodies also agreed on changes to the bill that legislates provisional licenses for veterinarians, technicians and technologists with off-island practices to participate in massive pet sterilization events.
The project that increases the future pensions of police, firefighters, correctional officers and paramedics also passed the melting pot of both legislative bodies. This measure was contested by the JSF for its fiscal impact.
The project provides that these public servants, if they have reached the age of 55 and entered the system before April 1, 1990, will be entitled to a pension of 50% of their earned salary. If officials reached age 58 and entered the system before April 1, 1990, they will qualify for a pension of 58% of their salary.
In the event that these public servants are 55 years old and entered the system between April 1, 1990 and December 31, 1999, they would receive a 45% pension.
Another measure that goes to La Fortaleza, Senate Joint Resolution 525 extends the moratoriums on mortgage loans in force for the months of July and August. The legislative melting pot also passed Senate Joint Resolution 555, which allocates incentives of between $ 1,000 and $ 2,500, from the Emergency Fund, to surgical technicians, radiological technicians, nuclear medicine technicians, medical emergency technicians, paramedics, therapists physicists, respiratory therapists, and physical therapist assistants.
The position of the Fiscal Oversight Board on the measure is unknown.
La Fortaleza withdraws appointments
At the request of La Fortaleza, the following appointments were withdrawn: Waddy Mercado Maldonado (to Superior Judge), Lourdes N. Acevedo Cruz (to Superior Judge), Sofía Ramos Ríos (to Superior Judge), Tania L. Fernández Medero (to Assistant Prosecutor) I), Johan Rosa Rodríguez (to Assistant Prosecutor I), Carlos J. Ojeda Marini (to Auxiliary Prosecutor II), Tanyha V. Rodríguez Vázquez (to Property Registrar), Idania Rodríguez Ayuso (as member of the Board of Directors of the Institute Statistics) and Magda Bardina García, (as a member of the Board of Directors of the Port of Ponce Authority).
The majority spokesman, Carmelo Ríos, limited himself to indicating that the nominees did not have the votes to be confirmed.