NC organization aids Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Maria, Irma
Sep 29, 2017, 00:35
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders tweeted Thursday morning that the president "has authorized the Jones Act be waived for Puerto Rico".
Ricardo Rosselló petitioned the White House to waive the law, known as the Jones Act, to aid in shipping resources to Puerto Rico while it recovers from devastating hurricanes.
Having set up a supply and logistics hub on the island following Hurricane Irma, Samaritan's Purse increased its capacity to provide aid-including emergency shelter materials and hygiene kits-to those living in Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico's governor, Ricardo Rossello, had said Wednesday that he expected the waiver, which suspends a 1920 law requiring that only American-flagged vessels be used for shipments between two USA ports.
Waiving restrictions on foreign vessels that carry cargo to Puerto Rico "could overwhelm the system, creating unnecessary backlogs and causing confusion on the distribution of critical supplies throughout the island,"' said Thomas Allegretti, the group's chairman.
"Any organization collecting donations can bring them here to the warehouse at the corner of Washington and Lake Shore Drive and we will make sure they get on the truck", he said. Advocates who pressed for the waiver have said it could get desperately needed supplies delivered to the island more quickly and at less cost. This is the most she can do for those still on the island awaiting help from the USA mainland and President Trump, who has been criticized for not doing enough to help the people of Puerto Rico.
At present, Puerto Rico is desperate for inputs - tools to fix generators so that electricity can be restored, supplies to purify water and avoid cholera, materials to buttress its damaged, crumbling infrastructure, and provisions to feed its population.
Days after the storm hit September 20, Rosa Maria Almonte's cafe in San Juan was still without power and all the other businesses nearby were boarded up.
"No food, no water, no power, no medical care for the dying", it reads. "Right now we are dealing with a crisis, so we need Congress and we need the president to step up".
In a handful of tweets throughout the week, Trump has addressed the nation's response to the devastation in the US territory.
"If we don't get help, something is going to happen that will be a long-term problem for Puerto Rico".
"They're not giving us any information", said Castellanos, a business consultant. But really only the smallest bit of common sense is needed to understand the Jones Act should be waived for Puerto Rico over the coming weeks.
And it gives his opponents another data point to use when they accuse Trump of being more empathetic to the plights of people who look like him.
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According to the hurricane centre, Maria is about 75 miles (120 km) east of Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. Many hospitals are flooded, heavily damaged and running exclusively on gas generators, reports Reuters .
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Officials say direct impacts from the storm includes tropicsl storm force winds and storm surge of 2-4 feet along the Outer Banks. So in conclusion, a track just offshore is most likely but we can't feel too comfortable about it for a couple more days.
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