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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Lares mayor: LUMA has stalled opening of cemetery

Lares has been without a cemetery since Hurricane Maria struck the island in September 2017.

By The Star Staff

Lares Mayor Fabián Arroyo Rodriguez charged on Monday that LUMA Energy has stalled the opening of the town’s transitional cemetery for two months because the company alleges that the construction violates the easement passage and refuses to provide the required endorsement.

“They haven’t just signed the endorsement and it’s unfortunate,” the mayor said in a radio interview. “I don’t need electricity to bury a person there. There are people suffering, relatives suffering because they have nowhere to bury their loved ones.”

Lares has been without a cemetery since Hurricane Maria passed through the island on Sept. 20, 2017 and destroyed the cemetery of that municipality.

Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia signed Executive Order 2017-057 last year declaring a state of emergency at the destroyed municipal cemetery.

As recently as last April, the governor and the Arroyo mayor broke ground on the transitional cemetery, which will provide 480 burial plots. The investment in the design and construction of the temporary municipal cemetery, which is located near Féliz Méndez Acevedo Coliseum, is $2.3 million.

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