Puerto Rico (The United States of America)

FEMA and COR3 Obligate Nearly $14 Million in Additional Funds for Permanent Work in Puerto Rico

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Release Number: DR-4339-PR NR 419

GUAYNABO, Puerto Rico – FEMA and the Central Office for Recovery, Reconstruction and Resilience, or COR3, have obligated over $13.9 million in funds for 131 projects related to the recovery and reconstruction of Puerto Rico. These funds were obligated between Feb. 7 and Feb. 20.

The latest grants obligated for permanent work are as follows:
- Over $6.6 million for repairs to roads and bridges.
- Over $5.6 million for repairs to parks and recreational facilities.
- Over $1.5 million for repairs to public buildings and equipment.
- Over $72,200 for public utilities

“We are focused on obligating projects every day and our staff are dedicated to supporting the Government of Puerto Rico as it continues to recover from the hurricanes. I couldn’t be prouder of the work we do, in coordination with COR3, to help municipalities rebuild stronger,” said Federal Disaster Recovery Coordinator for Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands, Alex Amparo.

Among the obligations are over $2.2 million to replace the communal basketball court in Barrio La Plata in Aibonito, including lighting, bleachers, scoreboard, bathrooms, ventilation system and part of its fence. Another $354,000 were obligated for repairs to its renowned Mirador La Piedra, which includes work to its gazebos, lighting system, bathrooms and fence.

“It is great that these funds have arrived to continue promoting economic development and job creation at the Mirador de La Piedra Degetau and for recreational, sports and religious activities at the Barrio La Plata basketball court,” said the mayor of Aibonito, William Alicea Perez.

Corozal, also in the central mountainous region of the island, has obligations totaling nearly $5.3 million to date for repairs to its many roads and bridges that were affected by the storms. Recently, funds were approved for repairs to a road in the Moncho Santos neighborhood, which was severely damaged.

“I have to thank the team at FEMA and COR3 for their efforts and excellent teamwork, it means so much that we can count on these funds. There are many residents with critical health issues that we must provide assistance for and help find immediate solutions so that these roadways are safe for them,” said the mayor of Corozal, Sergio Torres.

FEMA and COR3 continue to work together to develop strategies that advance recovery projects. To date, $6.6 billion has been approved for Puerto Rico under FEMA's Public Assistance program.

"Over the past few months we have seen important and significant progress in the small projects initiative as the number of obligated projects steadily increases. Our plan of prioritizing a strategy to move small projects forward is evident when each month we achieve new obligations that will allow subrecipients to carry out work that directly impacts communities. At COR3 we will continue to assist subrecipients and maintain communication and coordination with municipal and local agency liaisons, as well as with FEMA, to remain steadfast in the recovery and reconstruction process," said COR3 Executive Director Ottmar Chávez Piñero.

FEMA and COR3 remain focused on prioritizing obligations of funds to municipalities for eligible expenses related to hurricanes Irma and Maria to help communities recover. Funding for permanent work includes projects like roads, bridges, water control facilities, buildings and equipment, utilities and park and recreation facilities as authorized under Section 406 of the Robert T. Stafford Act.

FEMA works with COR3 through the agency’s Public Assistance program to obligate recovery funds to private nonprofit organizations, municipalities and agencies of the Government of Puerto Rico for expenses related to hurricanes Irma and María.

For more information on Puerto Rico’s recovery visit fema.gov/disaster/4339 and www.recovery.pr. You can also follow FEMA’s and COR3’s social networks on Facebook.com/FEMAPuertoRico, Facebook.com/COR3pr and Twitter @COR3pr.

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362) 711/VRS - Video Relay Service). Multilingual operators are available. (Press 2 for Spanish). TTY call 800-462-7585.