Home » US Supreme Court rules against Puerto Rico journalists seeking documents from financial oversight board

US Supreme Court rules against Puerto Rico journalists seeking documents from financial oversight board

by Derek Andrews
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The US Supreme Court docket on Thursday ruled towards a gaggle of Puerto Rico journalists who have been searching for paperwork from the island’s monetary oversight board, saying that the board is protected against such data requests by sovereign immunity.

The case, Monetary Oversight and Administration Board for Puerto Rico v. Centro de Periodismo Investigativo, requested the court docket to find out whether or not the board is protected by the Puerto Rican authorities’s sovereign immunity. Writing for almost all, Justice Elena Kagan stated that the board is a part of the federal government of Puerto Rico. To restrict that sovereign immunity, Congress would want to make use of “unmistakable language,” which isn’t current within the act that created the board, PROMESA. As a result of this sort of clear language limiting immunity just isn’t current, the board enjoys the protections of sovereign immunity and isn’t obligated to offer information to the press.

Lourdes M. Rosado, president of the civil rights group LatinoJustice PRLDEF, condemned the ruling, saying in a statement that the choice “permits this anti-democratic physique to proceed to withhold important data on their choices and actions affecting Puerto Rico’s financial system and the lives of thousands and thousands of individuals.”

Congress created the board in 2016 after the island territory declared a fiscal disaster. The board subsequently filed for chapter safety in 2017, however courts gave the board oversight of Puerto Rico’s monetary administration underneath PROMESA in 2018. Puerto Rico’s financial challenges have continued regardless of the board’s oversight, contributing to opposition to the board, whose members are usually not elected.

The ruling proscribing journalists’ rights to request data from the territory’s governing our bodies follows a 2022 Supreme Court docket decision that stated Puerto Ricans might be excluded from sure federal advantages. Puerto Rico’s standing stays an open query, as its present standing as a territory continues to create authorized issues for residents.

The Home of Representatives passed a invoice in December 2022 to empower Puerto Ricans to vote on whether or not they wish to develop into a US state, an impartial nation, or a sovereign authorities related to the US. The invoice didn’t cross the Senate however was re-introduced within the Home this yr.

Source / Picture: jurist.org

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