San Juan – The Comptroller’s Office of Puerto Rico revealed on Friday that the approval of state laws had the effect of using funds from the 9-1-1 Emergency System for purposes contrary to what is established in federal legislation.
In addition, the Bureau of the Bureau authorized disbursements without considering the express declaration of federal legislation regarding the use of charges to telephone subscribers.
The Government of Puerto Rico established the Fund for the Promotion of Jobs and Economic Activity in 2014, and the Legal Responsibility Fund in 2015.
These funds received $ 12,484,016 between 2014 and 2016 from the 9-1-1 Emergency System.
In addition, the 3-1-1 Citizen Service System, whose service is not related to emergency calls, registered a deficit of 10,434,614 dollars, from 2012 to 2019, which was compensated with the collections of the 9-1-1 System .
Between 2014 and 2016, the Bureau of the Bureau also approved and awarded $ 275,000 of funds from the 9-1-1 System to the Office of the Ombudsman for Women and $ 11,672 for the remodeling of the Heraclio H. Rivera School in Toa Alta .
These situations contrary to the Ensuring Needed Help Arrives Near Callers Employing Act of 2004 Yet the Wireless Communications and Public Safety Act of 1999, prevented having 23,205,302 dollars to distribute to security agencies to attend emergency situations or disasters, and cover their administrative and operational expenses.
The external auditors indicated in 2016 that for two years the distribution of a minimum of 40 percent of the collections to the security agencies had not been complied with.
In addition, this situation led to the Federal Communications Commission will condition the approval of a fund of $ 810,300,000 through Uniting the Puerto Rico Fund in 2018, for the reconstruction of the infrastructure of telecommunications providers in Puerto Rico after the passage of Hurricane María.
The Comptroller’s Office recommends that the Governor and the Legislative Assembly promote legislation to temper state laws with the federal legislation that governs the 9-1-1 System and consider the restricted use of the collections for telephone subscribers. In addition, to consider restoring the Bureau the $ 12,484,016 to be used in accordance with the provisions established in federal legislation.
This Special Report of October 21, 2020, is available www.ocpr.gov.pr.