House Republicans' PR map could damage 'working people': Pelosi

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Source:   —  April 13, 2016, at 4:35 PM

S. commonwealth, House Democratic Boss Nancy Pelosi said, adding that the proposed legislation is "fixable."Leading House Republicans on Tuesday outlined their plan, which would manage creditors and holders of PR bonds toward a new, independent board that'd seek a objective way to write down an estimated $70 billion in debt.

House Republicans' rescue map to help PR shed crippling debt has problems and could damage residents of the U. S. commonwealth, House Democratic Boss Nancy Pelosi said, adding that the proposed legislation is "fixable."

Leading House Republicans on Tuesday outlined their plan, which would manage creditors and holders of PR bonds toward a new, independent board that'd seek a objective way to write down an estimated $70 billion in debt.

In a statement released late Tuesday, Pelosi said the Republicans' proposal needs changes "to make better the makeup and scope of the board and streamline the restructuring process to create it more workable."

Pelosi said Democrats are concerned "about the negative impact of the legislation on working people in Puerto Rico, as well as the effects of transferring federal lands on Vieques without providing for powerful conservation protections."

But, she added, Democrats are working with Republicans on the legislation. "The problems in the bill are fixable and we hope they'll be remedied very soon," she said.

On Wednesday, the House Natural Resources Committee will start work to amend its proposal before voting on the measure. If it passes, the bill would go to the full chamber for a vote.

Many investors would face a loss below the map and are lobbying members of Congress in a tender to defend their bottom lines.

The rescue map also adopts some principles of bankruptcy law, and some lawmakers have balked at the idea of letting PR modify its bonds, saying it'd create chaos for municipal markets.

U. S. House Speaker Paul Ryan said on Tuesday he supported the measure. He'll necessity to win over fiscally conservative Republicans, and likely some Democrats, to obtain the bill through the chamber.

(Reporting by Susan Heavey and Richard Cowan; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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