WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republicans plan to bring a bill addressing Puerto Rico’s debt crisis to the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives by the end of March, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said on Monday.
McCarthy, speaking to reporters at a press briefing, offered no details on the content of the planned legislation.
He said two House committees will be in charge of developing legislation, adding that one of them is looking at a “control panel” to help the Caribbean island U.S. territory out of its debt problems.
The U.S. Treasury Department has called on Congress to create a fiscal control board for Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla has said his administration would seek to ensure that any such board would respect the island’s autonomy.
“Chapter 9” bankruptcy for municipalities also has been discussed, McCarthy said.
Last year, House Speaker Paul Ryan said he wanted the Republican-led House to come up with a response to Puerto Rico’s fiscal crisis during the first quarter of 2016.
“It’s our intention to meet that deadline to get a bill ... on the floor, before the end of the first quarter,” McCarthy said.
Separately on Monday, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Ryan was likely to discuss Puerto Rico’s crisis during Tuesday’s scheduled meeting at the White House with President Barack Obama and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Reporting by Richard Cowan; Writing by Susan Heavey; Editing by Chris Reese and Will Dunham