June 12, 2021

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Fiscal Oversight Board certifies government budget

The Fiscal Oversight Board (JSF) reported this morning that it certified the consolidated budget of the Government of Puerto Rico for fiscal year 2021.

In addition, the fiscal entity announced that it certified the budgets of eight government agencies and dependencies and budgets for ten municipalities, which are part of a pilot project.

In a press release published today, shortly after midnight, he indicated that the government budget increased by 10 %, from $ 20.2 billion in fiscal year 2020 to a total of $ 22.2 billion in fiscal year 2021 which takes effect today, July 1.

noted that the increase is primarily due to a projected increase in 17% in federal funds, from $ 7.6 billion to $ 8.9 billion, and a projected increase of 5% in the general fund budget, from $ 9.6 billion to $ 10,045 million.

These projections respond -in part- to higher investment tions in health care and the postponement of government adjustments for one year, as announced earlier this month.

“The budget for fiscal year 2021 is clear testimony in favor of accountability of previous years, ”declared the president of the Supervisory Board, José Carrión, in written statements.

He added that" Puerto Rico has a budget that completely covers critically essential services, invests in vital areas, such as health and technology, while remaining balanced. "

" We have ended the cycle of spending at deficit levels despite natural disasters and the current health crisis, "he assured.

According to the JSF, the consolidated budget includes the General Fund with $ 10,045 million. This is the fund that the Government uses for its day-to-day operations. In addition to additional investments to continue providing priority services and for economic recovery, the General Fund has a reclassification of certain special income expenses.

The budget also includes $ 3.3 billion Special Income Funds which is made up of revenues generated by the government from fees and services dedicated to private uses, has decreased from $ 3.6 billion in fiscal year 2020, mainly due to the aforementioned reclassification.

Likewise, the document states that the funds The federal government reached $ 8.9 billion, an increase of more than 17% compared to what had been anticipated, primarily as a result of an increase in hiring to finance the Medicaid program in Puerto Rico. During fiscal year 2020 that figure was $ 7.6 billion.

The most significant item of expenditure continues to be in the health sector, with $ 5 billion, or 23% of the total of the budget. The second highest item is for education, with $ 3.5 billion, or 16% of the total budget.

Meanwhile, the Government's PayGo pension payments amount to $ 2.6 billion or a 12% of the total budgeted.

Likewise, the budget for fiscal year 2021 addresses the crisis caused by COVID-19 with additional expenses in priority areas, despite the projections that pointed to a decrease in income, as a consequence of the pandemic.

Likewise, the budget includes $ 314 million of additional investments in health care, mainly in public hospitals; $ 285 million in additional investments in public safety; and $ 176 million in additional investments in education primarily in special education and in the scholarship fund of the University of Puerto Rico.

The Supervisory Board also certified the budgets for fiscal year 2021 of the following public entities :

• Electric Power Authority (AEE)

• Aqueduct and Sewer Authority (AAA)

• Highway and Transportation Authority (ACT)

• University of Puerto Rico (UPR)

• Pressing Interest Fund Corporation (COFINA)

• Puerto Rico Industrial Development Company (PRIDCO)

• Public Corporation for Supervision and Insurance of Cooperatives (COSSEC)

• Center of Municipal Tax Collection (CRIM)

• Ten Municipalities, as part of the pilot program of the JSF

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