Governor signs law creating UPR scholarship trust fund

By John McPhaul

Gov. Wanda Vázquez Garced signed House Bill 2595 on Tuesday to authorize the Secretary of the Treasury to establish through public deed the Independent Scholarship Trust of the University of Puerto Rico (UPR).

“Our government has a firm commitment to promoting and strengthening postsecondary public education in Puerto Rico. The now Law 148-2020 seeks to strengthen post-secondary public education and make it accessible to everyone who aspires to a university degree, regardless of their financial resources,” Vázquez said in a written statement. “This Trust will help those who have financial need by supporting their academic and professional training.”

“As a graduate of the University of Puerto Rico and for me as Governor, it is important to do everything in my power to strengthen and provide opportunities for all students,” the governor added. “So that our young people can have access to academic growth of excellence in our primary university center.”

The law authorizes the creation of a private and independent trust for the distribution of financial aid to eligible undergraduate and graduate students of the UPR in order to help them in their studies and in their effective integration into the labor market.

The measure, which was one of those sent by Vázquez to the Legislative Assembly for consideration in the recent Sixth Extraordinary Session, provides for the trust to have recurring budgetary allocations as of fiscal year 2020-2021. The contributions or donations made to the Trust will be 100 percent deductible in the individual or corporate payroll of the donor.

The trust can receive donations, and the scholarships will be distributed, according to the regulations and standards adopted by the UPR. Vázquez noted that the law creates a perpetual fund in order to keep it liquid and growing every year.

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