El gobierno como empresa: avanza un nuevo modelo de gestión pública en Puerto Rico

En medio del laboratorio de austeridad en que se ha convertido Puerto Rico, la principal empresa asesora de la Junta de Control Fiscal impulsa que la gestión del Gobierno imite a las corporaciones privadas. Hasta el momento, McKinsey ha facturado sobre $72 millones por su trabajo.

McKinsey: Puerto Rico Bondholder and Fiscal Board’s Lead Adviser

The world’s largest financial consulting firm leads the operations of Puerto Rico’s federally appointed Fiscal Control Board, as evidenced by emails obtained by the Center for Investigative Journalism. McKinsey also owns Puerto Rico bonds and is subject of various investigations, including one commissioned by the entity imposed by the federal PROMESA law.

Puerto Rico Fiscal Board Fights For Secrecy

Puerto Rico’s federally appointed Fiscal Board refused to deliver an unspecified number of communications between the entity and officials of Congress, the White House, Treasury and other federal agencies. As part of an access to information lawsuit brought by the Center of Investigative Journalism (CPI) a year and a half ago, the Board alleges that they are privileged documents and must remain confidential. In a two-page letter dated Nov. 21 and addressed to the CPI’s legal representation, Board lawyers, Proskauer Rose, argue that the disclosure of certain emails and related attachments would affect the island’s economy, capital markets, pending law enforcement investigations and “the ability to perform [the Board’s] statutory duties.”

The entity imposed by the U.S. government through a federal law known as PROMESA only mentions broad justifications and descriptions for the withheld documents, the amount of which remains unknown, as are the names of those who are part of the communications that remain outside the public domain. The CPI lawsuit against the entity aims to obtain access to communications between the seven-member fiscal panel and both federal and local government.

Emails Expose Federal Gov’t Influence Over Puerto Rico’s Fiscal Board

“Started engaging with the creditors yet?,” asked Ted McCann, then adviser to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin), in a March 21, 2017, email sent to Carlos García, a member of Puerto Rico’s federally appointed Fiscal Control Board. Shortly after, García, a former president of the commonwealth’s Government Development Bank (GDB) and whose appointment to the board was pushed through Ryan’s office, replied:

“Yes, a lot of focus on GO/Cofina controversy. Each group stepping up their rhetoric. Board pressing on for meaningful progress. Challenge is the limited projected Primary surplus available in the first 10 years for debt service.

Los documentos que la Junta quiere ocultar

La Junta de Control Fiscal de Puerto Rico rehusó entregar un sinnúmero de comunicaciones entre la entidad y oficiales del Congreso de Estados Unidos, la Casa Blanca, el Tesoro y otras agencias del Gobierno federal, alegando que son documentos confidenciales, como parte de un pleito de acceso a la información que lleva el Centro de Periodismo Investigativo (CPI) hace un año y medio. En una carta de dos páginas, con fecha del 21 de noviembre y dirigida a la representación legal del CPI, los abogados de la Junta argumentan que la divulgación de ciertos correos y documentos anejos afectaría la economía de la isla, los mercados de capital, investigaciones criminales en curso y “la habilidad de la Junta de ejercer sus poderes estatutarios”. La entidad impuesta mediante la ley PROMESA por el Gobierno de Estados Unidos solamente menciona a grandes rasgos sus justificaciones y provee descripciones generales sobre los documentos retenidos, cuya cantidad es desconocida. Tampoco nombra las personas que forman parte de las comunicaciones que permanecen fuera del dominio público. La demanda que el CPI lleva en contra de la entidad va dirigida a obtener acceso a las comunicaciones entre el ente rector, el Gobierno federal y el Gobierno de Puerto Rico.