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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Pacts signed for 2 federally funded mental health facilities in Bayamón

Housing Secretary William Rodríguez Rodríguez

By The Star Staff

Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia on Tuesday announced the signing of two agreements totaling $167 million between the island Housing Department and the Mental Health and Anti-Addiction Services Administration (ASSMCA by its Spanish initials), and the Housing Department and the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (DCR), for the construction of two new mental health facilities.

Housing Secretary William Rodríguez Rodríguez signed the agreements with DCR Secretary Ana Escobar Pabón and ASSMCA Administrator Carlos Rodríguez Mateo.

“As part of our statewide reconstruction plan submitted to the federal Department of Housing for CDBG-MIT [Community Development Block Grant Disaster Mitigation] funds, we created the Health Care Reserve in the Infrastructure Mitigation Program,” the governor said at a press conference. “To this program, which is allowing us to create resilient infrastructure in our communities, we allocated $1 billion for the reconstruction of public health facilities.”

The governor added that “today the Department of Housing and the Mental Health and Anti-Addiction Services Administration are signing an agreement for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Ramón Ruiz Arnau University Hospital, known as HURRA, in Bayamón.”

“At the same time, today the Department of Housing will also sign a subrecipient agreement with the Department of Correction and Rehabilitation to build the first psychiatric hospital for inmates that will be located in the municipality of Bayamón,” he said.

The multimillion-dollar investment in the two projects comes as part of the $1 billion health care reserve of the CDBG-MIT Infrastructure Mitigation Program.

The Housing secretary stressed that “these important agreements are key to the future of mental health in Puerto Rico.”

“Recovery funds have a great reach and today we see it,” Rodríguez Rodríguez said. “These new infrastructure works will allow us to address the need for alternatives and treatments for Puerto Ricans who need them and do not have the opportunity to receive assistance.”

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