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US Military Takes Over Hurricane Relief Delivery In Puerto Rico

Soldiers of Puerto Rico's national guard distribute relief items to people, after the area was hit by Hurricane Maria in San Juan, Puerto Rico September 24, 2017. REUTERS/Alvin Baez

The Department of Defense took over the distribution of hurricane relief from government officials in Puerto Rico this weekend after local mayors failed to appropriately disperse the emergency items to the territory’s 78 municipalities, The Miami Herald reported Sunday.

According to The Herald, food, water, and medical supplies were previously delivered to 10 regional staging sites in Puerto Rico, but the mayors did not coordinate properly to distribute the large containers of relief at the staging sites.

Instead, 10 to 20 soldiers will be posted in every municipality with vehicles and logistical support, where they will deliver relief to every neighborhood.

“We need to push it directly to the barrio to ensure that everyone’s getting it,” Brig. Gen. Jose J. Reyes, assistant adjutant general of the Puerto Rico National Guard said. “They will have some vehicles. They will have radio communications as well as logistics support…. They are going to be living there. They are going to be operating 24/7.”

Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio reacted to the news of the hurricane relief being handled by the U.S. military saying in a tweet Sunday night, “[Twelve] days ago said @DeptofDefense must take over @PuertoRicoRelief appears they have finally reached same conclusion.”

More political back and forth over the plight of the island continued when some residents in Puerto Rico’s capital lost power Sunday during an attempt to restore electricity to the territory failed because a substation went down earlier in the day, NBC News reported.

The power outage prompted San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz to tweet early Sunday morning, “Power collapses in San Juan hospital with 4 patients now being transferred out. Have requested support from FEMA. NOTHING! @DavidBegnaud

FEMA Administrator Brock Long responded to the mayor on ABC’s “This Week,” stating: “We filtered out the mayor a long time ago. We don’t have time for the political noise.”



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Kerry Picket
the authorKerry Picket
Kerry Picket is a Washington D.C. based reporter at The Daily Caller and fill-in radio host at SiriusXM Patriot 125. Picket has worked has at other outlets including The Washington Times, where she began reporting on Capitol Hill. Before that, she produced news content for Robin Quivers of “The Howard Stern Show” on SiriusXM, wrote entertainment news for MTV Radio and worked as a production assistant at MTV.com.

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