Puerto Rico Towns to Share Services

This is so sensible it's crazy it was not permitted by law in the past.  I assume it was opposed by public employees fearing job losses.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico –  Puerto Rico's governor has signed a bill letting the island's 78 municipal governments share administrative services as a cost-saving measure amid a deep fiscal crisis.

The measure amends a 1991 law to let local governments set up agreements between two or more municipalities to cooperate on finance, public works and other areas, instead of each town having a department for each service.

Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla said late Friday that it is expected to result in substantial savings.

About $2 billion is spent each year to run the U.S. territory's town governments, which employ 56,400 workers. Island mayors have backed the new measure as Puerto Rico struggles with nearly $70 billion in debt and a prolonged economic downturn.

I love this idea, much more than cutting power to a city on Friday night during high tourist time! Not to mention no AC on a hot night.

Maybe so many of the politicians' relatives left the island, they do not have enough bodies to fill the positions.

The mayors went along for several reasons
A) is not mandatory, it is allowed
B) There was another plan that would have merged several municipalites under a single mayor and single set of offices. This would have reduced the municipalities to 20 centralized ones, so only 20 mayors.

Option B would have saved even more since it was to be mandatory, but very unpopular with the mayors. I guess rhis was a compromise.

It is unclear how much savings  is to occur under the signed law.

They should have done this a long time ago.  It is ridiculous that they have 78 different municipalities when Puerto Rico is not that large.

There is a new proposal to group multiple municipalities into 8 groups, msintaining each of the 78 mayors and without loosing town. The intent is to have all the towns within each of the 8 regions share resources. Acording to the draft it would save about 340 millions a year.

Likelyhood to pass: In my opinion very low.
Each of the mayors want to keep power and make the decisions. Joining multiple would result in Boards not one man making decisions, poweful municipalities do not want a bunch of small towns to lessen their power and small towns dont want big powerful towns to drown theiir view. So this is going nowhere.

Here is a story about the subject

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