February 24, 2018

Trump warns federal help for Puerto Rico not open-ended

13 October 2017, 08:05 | Taylor George

Puerto Rico remains in crisis three weeks after Hurricane Maria struck as a Category Four stormMore

Puerto Rico remains in crisis three weeks after Hurricane Maria struck as a Category Four stormMore

A FEMA spokeswoman later said the agency would remain in Puerto Rico and other disaster-hit areas "every day" throughout their recoveries. "Electric and all infrastructure was disaster before hurricanes", Trump wrote in a series of tweets early Thursday.

He then went on to propose that the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the military and first responders - who he said "have been incredible (under the most hard circumstances)" - can not stay in the US territory "forever!"

Amid the humanitarian catastrophe, Trump took to Twitter to threaten an end to aid for the USA territory.

Rubio said he suggested forming an advisory group during a conversation with Trump on Sunday.

The president's tweets set off a flurry of chatter online, given that the USA territory is barely entering its third week with the majority of the population still without power and one-third without water.

White House chief of staff John Kelly also touched on Puerto Rico at a press conference Thursday, saying Trump's tweet was "exactly accurate", considering they would not be there forever. This is the time to show our "true colors".

Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló said in a news conference Thursday that he called the White House looking for clarification on Trump's tweets. Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz - who has been critical of Trump and the federal hurricane-relief effort - said his comments seemed to come from a "hater in chief". He blamed Puerto Rico for its looming financial crisis and "a total lack of accountability". Puerto Rico's Treasury Secretary Raul Maldonado said last week that the government was poised to run out of money at the end of October, and may have to furlough government employees, a move that would hinder recovery efforts.

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While MLB has been doing what it could to lend a hand to Puerto Rico, Trump hasn't appeared to be all that eager to help.

More than a dozen years after Hurricane Katrina pounded the Gulf Coast, FEMA was slated to dole out almost half a billion dollars in fiscal year 2017 to fund relief efforts, mostly in Louisiana, after the hurricane and subsequent storms Rita and Wilma.

60 percent of wastewater treatment plants are working on generator power.

Keep in mind, more than 80% of the island still doesn't have electricity and many don't have cell service or access to clean water.

The House is on track to back Trump's request for billions more in disaster aid, $16 billion to pay flood insurance claims and emergency funding to help the cash-strapped government of Puerto Rico stay afloat. Puerto Rico and its agencies owe more than $70 billion to creditors.

Rubio, who visited Puerto Rico on September 25 to survey hurricane damage, said he was confident the island would get the help it needs in the short term through emergency legislation.

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