Trump says Puerto Rico has thrown budget 'out of whack'

ANI | Updated: Oct 04, 2017 05:12 IST

Washington D.C. [U.S.A.], Oct 4 (ANI): The United States President Donald Trump on Tuesday visited storm-ravaged Puerto Rico and remarked that relief costs could strain the federal budget.

"I hate to tell you, Puerto Rico, but you've thrown our budget a little out of whack -- because we've spent a lot of money on Puerto Rico and that's fine, we've saved a lot of lives," Trump said.

Estimates on the damage to Puerto Rico range between USD 30 billion to USD 95 billion.

In the days after the storm, Trump faced criticism for a sluggish response in Puerto Rico compared to the recent storms that smashed the states of Texas and Florida.

With most of the power transmission grid destroyed, more than 95 percent of population are without regular electricity service. Only 10.7 percent of the island's cell phone towers are working.

House Speaker Ryan last week announced USD 6.7 billion in hurricane relief to help victims of three storms, including Maria.

President Trump has criticised the mayor of the Island's capital over the sluggish response to the disaster relief efforts.

"We need to do a lot more in order for us to get out of the emergency," Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello said in San Juan. "But the other thing that's also true is that the administration has answered and has complied with our petitions in an expedited manner."

"Such poor leadership ability by the mayor of San Juan, and others in Puerto Rico, who are not able to get their workers to help," Trump tweeted on Saturday morning. "They want everything to be done for them when it should be a community effort.

Puerto Ricans are frustrated as they are still struggling with basic necessities two weeks after they were hit by the worst hurricane in 90 years. (ANI)

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