NPP approves amendments to its regulations
By The Star Staff
The New Progressive Party (NPP) General Assembly approved on Sunday amendments to its regulations during an event held at the Juan Aubin Cruz Abreu Coliseum in Manatí, including one that makes achieving statehood the purpose of the political party.
“I have exactly six years, nine months and 12 days left to complete the work and achieve statehood,” Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia said during the assembly.
“Next week, our board of directors is going to approve regulations for the reorganization of this party, which is the next step,” he said. “No party is as advanced in these processes as ours. The rest are falling asleep.”
Pierluisi noted that the reorganization of the NPP will come from the bottom up and that the party grassroots will get to select candidates.
“Because I’m going to tell you something. The starting point to win elections is to have the party properly organized, and we are going to achieve it,” he stated.
Gurabo Mayor Rosachely Rivera Santana, who co-chairs the Regulations Committee, summarized the amendments to the NPP rules that in her opinion had the greatest impact.
For example, she said that hopefuls for elected positions who fail to get a nomination will not be allowed to damage the reputation of or attack the winning nominee.
“Respect was added so as not to damage the image and reputation of our party,” she said.
The amendments would also make Sept. 4 the official birthday celebration of former Governor and Resident Commissioner Carlos Romero Barceló, who passed away on May 2 of last year at the age of 88. Romero Barceló was also San Juan mayor.
In addition, the NPP created new organs in its structure including a council of ex-legislators, another of ex-municipal leaders, an advisory committee on environmental affairs, and a council of NPP officials in the mainland United States.
Likewise, the assistant secretary of public affairs, the assistant secretary of political affairs, the alternate electoral commissioner, the director of the Luis A. Ferré Institute of Public Policy, and the director of the veterans’ organization were included with voice and vote in the NPP directorate. Also included were the director of the organization of Base and Faith Communities and the director of the organization of LGBTT statehood supporters.
The defense of statehood was also added as the main reason for the party’s creation.
Two amendments were included in the plenary session of the General Assembly and were approved. The first is to include, with voice but without vote, a representative of the council of former mayors in the directorate.
The second motion seeks to clarify that when a person is an incumbent legislator of the House or the Senate by precinct or legislative district, he or she will not be required to be a resident of the precinct to preside over it.
During the activity, officials honored veteran Juan Cruz Rodríguez. Cruz Rodríguez was the protagonist of an incident last week in Puerta de Tierra involving demonstrators with the group The Promises Are Over. During the protest, the demonstrators removed some U.S. flags and threw them into the street. The war veteran picked up the flags.
In addition, tribute was paid to Romero Barceló and to U.S. Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska), who died Friday. Young was the author of the only pro-statehood for Puerto Rico bill to be approved by the House of Representatives.