• The San Juan Daily Star

New Cataño mayor: ‘The contract waste spree ends tomorrow … morning’

“I know how to fight corruption,” Julio Alicea Vasallo said at a press conference Sunday after he was sworn in as mayor of Cataño.

By The Star Staff

After being sworn in at his home as mayor of Cataño, Julio Alicea Vasallo said on Sunday that he will cancel a third of the contracts that have been signed.

“I know how to fight corruption,” Alicea Vasallo said at a press conference. “I am going to equip the Internal Audit Office, which is inoperative [at present]. I’m going to give them the tools and seminars and I’m going to establish an executive order to give that office total independence. I’m going to ban campaigning outside of business hours. Tomorrow I am going to meet with Mr. [former acting mayor Gabriel] Sicardó to evaluate each of these contracts. I have already seen some contracts on the Comptroller’s page and they don’t look good. I am going to reduce a third of those contracts.”

“I see professional service contracts and I can tell you, to advise on human resources, for advice on the internal audit area, for advice on public administration, on finance, that’s why I’m there,” he added. “I do not need advisers to teach me, and I say this with great humility. There are many professional and advisory services contracts that are not needed in the municipality, I am going to cancel them, and there are many.”

Alicea Vasallo noted that he has an estimated reduction of $150 million in contracts which he said he will dedicate to the communities of Cataño.

“The contract waste spree ends tomorrow at 8:00 in the morning,” he added.

Alicea Vasallo was sworn in by Superior Judge Pedro Vidal, in a ceremony that took place at his residence.

In relation to contracts, Alicea Vasallo also said, “the [former] mayor [Félix Delgado Montalvo] never signed contracts.”

“The contracts in Cataño are going to be signed by this public servant,” he said, adding that it was Gabriel Sicardó Ocasio who signed the contracts, as well as Honoris Machado.

“I’m considering her staying because she’s my friend,” he said.

Alicea Vasallo also mentioned the name of Alex Mojica, city manager.

“The Comptroller’s Office seized his computer and I understand that the Comptroller of Puerto Rico has a solid case to refer to the Department of Justice,” the mayor said. “I wonder why this man is still there.”

Alicea Vasallo added that he wants to create a radiological center in Cataño.

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