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Court Ruling in Favor of MVC Representative – NotiCel – Truth As It Is – Puerto Rico News – NOTICEL

Court Ruling in Favor of MVC Representative – NotiCel – Truth As It Is – Puerto Rico News – NOTICEL

In a lawsuit against the Ministry of Education.

MVC representative, Jose Bernardo Márquez.

Photo: Supplied

Yesterday afternoon, Superior Judge Alfonso Martínez Piovannetti ruled in favor of Movement for the Victory of Citizens (MVC) representative José Bernardo Márquez in his lawsuit against the Department of Education (DE) for lack of accountability for public funds allocated to direct services. in schools.

The controversy arises after Márquez has been asking the Ministry of Education for months for the annual reports required under Law 85, known as the “Educational Reform”, in which the Minister of Education must prove that at least 70% of the department’s budget goes directly to direct services. Since the law went into effect, the representative had not filed a single report until Representative Marquez filed the lawsuit.

The judge decided in his ruling that:[d]Since the entry into force of Law No. 85-2018, neither the electoral district nor its secretary has timely complied with the duty stipulated in the aforementioned clause, as the annual report was not submitted to the Legislative Council with the required information during “the preparation of the agency’s budget request for the fiscal years 2018-2019.” 2019-2020, 2020-2021, 2021-2022, 2022-2023, 2023-2024.”

For this reason, the judge concluded that “it is appropriate to grant a declaratory remedy in this case in order to declare and clarify that the annual report to be submitted to the Legislative Assembly in accordance with the provisions of Article 2.02 of Law No. 85-2018 must specifically stipulate the percentage Departmental budget funds directed to direct services to students in schools.”

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In response to the ruling, the representative expressed his satisfaction with the judicial decision that protects the right to education and the oversight function of the legislature. “It is simply unacceptable that schools can be so dilapidated and neglected, while the department manages a $5.8 billion budget. This ruling and these reports will allow us to determine where this money stays in the administrative machinery and thus ensure it actually reaches schools and students.

Finally, the Attorney General argued in the case that Act 85’s mandate for budget reporting and 70% of direct services only applied to state funds, but the judge concluded that it applied to the entire “department budget,” including federal funds.

PDF: Judgment of Mandamus (TPI).pdf

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