PR AND DOM REP LEADERS SIGN ACCORDS
From The San Juan Daily Star:
Gov. Alejandro García Padilla and first lady Wilma Pastrana
welcomed Dominican Republic President Danilo Medina and his
wife Cándia Montilla, who arrived on the island Tuesday
morning to sign a number of agreements between Puerto Rico
and its Caribbean neighbor.
García Padilla took advantage of the Dominican president’s
one-day visit to announce he will be introducing legislation
that will allow all individuals regardless of immigration
status to vote in elections. “There are U.S. jurisdictions
that have done this and we should have been first,” he said.
University of Puerto Rico President Urayoan Walker revealed
that one of the agreements will allow for the exchange of
students so they can study English, engineering and
agriculture. Some 75 Dominican students who got scholarships
from the Science and Technology Ministry will benefi t from
PR FACES DEBT RISK BESIDES POWER CO
A potential restructuring of Puerto Rico power-utility debt may
fail to shield other commonwealth bonds from a similar outcome.
Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla’s strategy to bolster the
Government Development Bank, which lends to the junk-rated
commonwealth and its localities, hinges on a planned $2.9
billion bond sale backed by increased petroleum-tax revenue.
Lawmakers intend to amend the deal this month to make it more
attractive to investors. Without the borrowing, the GDB’s
cash would drop by almost half by March 31, according to
Moody’s Investors Service, crimping its ability to serve as
a financing backstop.
Puerto Rico and its agencies are staggering under $73 billion
of debt, which would rank the territory third among U.S. states.
PUERTO RICO CRIME DROPS SHARPLY IN 2014
From Yahoo! News:
The island of 3.7 million people had 681 homicides in 2014,
the lowest number in nearly 15 years and a drop of 40 percent
since murders reached a record high of 1,164 three years ago.
Violent crime overall fell 17 percent over the same period.
Credit for the decline goes to a number of factors, from
increased efforts to prevent crime to a broader trend of
declining violence across the United States and the
GOOGLE TO LAUNCH MODULAR PHONE IN PR
Google Inc. on Wednesday said it would launch a “modular”
smartphone in Puerto Rico, part of an audacious and risky
effort by the Internet giant to upend the way mobile devices
are designed, built and sold.
The Ara smartphone, which has components that can be replaced
and upgraded through a hardware marketplace similar to an app
store, will go on sale on the island in the second half of 2015.
Google is partnering with cellular carriers OpenMobile and
Claro, part of America Movil , the largest wireless-service
provider in Latin America