Puerto Rico in Distress

ABI Analysis

Puerto Rico’s bankrupt public electric utility, which powers most of the island, faces a Dec. 1 deadline to file a debt-cutting proposal to the court, a time limit that could prove a turning point in its five-year workout, Bloomberg News reported.

A Canadian-American consortium swept into Puerto Rico last year with promises to transform the island’s antiquated power grid. Many residents welcomed the change, tired of subpar service from a state-run utility that left them in darkness for months after a strong hurricane five years ago.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to take up Puerto Rico teachers unions’ appeal to challenge the island’s historic debt and pension restructuring plan, Bloomberg Law reported. The justices’ decision to bypass keeps in place the restructuring plan’s provisions that upend local laws and reduce teacher benefits.

A federal control board that supervises Puerto Rico’s finances announced a new executive director on Thursday after its last one stepped down in April following a historic debt restructuring for the U.S. territory, the Associated Press reported. Robert Mujica, budget director for New York state, is expected to assume his new role in January.