April 18, 2021

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Senate will investigate the impact of the inventory tax on businesses and municipalities

The capitol – During the Ordinary Session, the Upper House approved this Thursday, an investigation, through Senate Resolution 65, to determine the economic impact of the inventory tax on businesses and municipalities.

“Our intention is to determine who pays it, on what is paid, what is exempt and thus, clarify a series of urban legends that has to do with the absence of inventory in Puerto Rico. I preliminarily believe that the real reason at the mega-store level is the accelerated evolution of electronic commerce. Through this resolution, we want CRIM requirements to act based on data and not urban legends, ”said the senator and author of the measure, Juan Zaragoza Gómez in a written communication.

The investigation, which will be in charge of the Finance, Federal Affairs Commission and the Senate Fiscal Control Board, seeks to establish the factual bases, in order to determine if it is necessary to take legislative or administrative measures to alter or, of be meritorious, eliminate or replace the inventory tax, without affecting municipal collections.

In the explanatory memorandum, RS65 highlights that “both small and medium-sized merchants demand greater relief from the Government. The high costs of doing business and a loaded and complicated tax environment diminish the ability to cushion the shocks caused by natural disasters. On the other hand, citizens recognize the urgency of having a sufficient stock of articles to face the interruptions in the supply chain that accompany these events. And that is how the already widespread demand for the elimination of the inventory tax was born ”.

On the other hand, Senate Bill 190 was approved, which creates the “Law of Justice for Families and Individuals of the Special Communities Program.”

This measure aims to strengthen the Perpetual Trust for Special Communities and, in turn, establish an orderly process to address the uncertainty of dozens of families and individuals relocated in temporary rentals by the Special Communities of Puerto Rico program.

“Enough of not fulfilling what we promised (to these communities). It is important to reiterate the commitment of these Commissions with the communities and their leadership. It is essential to reform the components of the Trust and the ODSEC, this in order to achieve a true participation of our communities and to vindicate the main objective of the Special Communities: to empower the communities so that they have the opportunity to transform their environment and trace their own destiny ”, said the senator of the Popular Democratic Party and author of the measure, Gretchen Hau.

For his part, the independent senator, José Vargas Vidot, expressed his support for the measure and said that “the project in its essence, what it does is denounce bad practice and establish what good practice should be. This project after the hearing and the consideration of the deponents, should provoke respect. A vote for this is not a useless matter, we are talking about doing justice to hundreds and thousands of families who have been forgotten. We will be pending and supervising so that mistakes are not repeated ”.

On the other hand, Senate Resolution 70 was approved, authored by the senators of the Citizen Victory Movement, Ana Irma Rivera Lassén and Rafael Bernabe Riefkohl, so that the Social Welfare and Old Age Affairs Commissions; and Human Rights and Labor Affairs, carry out an investigation on the processes of the agencies with responsibilities under the Law for the Safety, Welfare and Protection of Minors, when intervening with people with functional diversity and, in particular, with deaf people.

Another of the measures endorsed was Senate Resolution 59, authored by the senators of the Popular Democratic Party delegation, Marially González Huertas and Ramón Ruiz Nieves, to order the Development Commission of the South Central Region an investigation into the Actions carried out by the Port Authority on the administration of the Mercedita International Airport in the municipality of Ponce, specifically the steps taken to establish a Public-Private Alliance for its operation and maintenance, and the claims of businessmen and institutions of this region for its administration.

In addition, the following measures were approved: Senate Resolution 60, to carry out an investigation on the current situation of the different stages involved in the project to convert the PR-10 State Highway into a Highway, from Arecibo to Ponce, particularly the sections unfinished from the Municipality of Adjuntas to the Municipality of Utuado; Senate Resolution 89 to conduct an investigation on the current situation and status of recreational and sports facilities under the jurisdiction of the Sports and Recreation Department, with the purpose of identifying alternatives aimed at establishing solutions and imposing responsibilities on the pertinent government agencies.

The Senate recessed its work until next Monday, March 8, 2021 at 1:00 in the afternoon.

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