O`Reilly, Alejandro

O`Reilly, Alejandro Alejandro O`Reilly Soldier of Irish origin who served the Spanish crown. In 1765, he was assigned the task of investigating the socio-economic conditions of the island and recommending improvements in its defense systems. O’Reilly’s report not only set out the essential problems facing the island, but also described the living conditions and interpersonal [...]

Office of Courts Administration

The Office of Courts Administration The Constitution of the Commonwealth Puerto Rico gives the chief justice of the Supreme Court the responsibility for the administration of the judicial system and authorizes the appointment of an administrative director to assist with that task. This administrative official serves at the discretion of the chief justice. The full [...]

Oller y Cestero, Francisco

Oller y Cestero, Francisco Paisaje francés I Francisco Oller was the first Puerto Rican painter who had the opportunity to study in Europe and whose work was recognized internationally. His impressionist paintings portrayed the realities of Puerto Rican life. He is also considered the first pictorial arts educator in Puerto Rico. His work contributed to [...]

On Municipal Autonomy II

On Municipal Autonomy II In my last column I explained the importance of municipal autonomy with regards to citizen participation in government, deepening our democracy, and for the more efficient governance of Puerto Rico. I pointed out that this was not well understood, and that the legislature, the judiciary, and the executive branch are constantly [...]

On Municipal Autonomy IV

On Municipal Autonomy IV This is my last column on a constitutional amendment to provide for municipal autonomy. The purpose of such an amendment is to deepen our democracy by empowering the people at the local level in order to provide for more efficient government for Puerto Rico. Once municipal autonomy is defined, made operative, [...]

Opening Up Possibilities

Opening Up Possibilities - page 1 Ana Helvia Quintero, Humanist of the Year del 2008 I thank the Endowment for this honor, Fernando Agrait for his words, and all of you for being here tonight. As Fernando said, my main dedication has been aimed at education. As I have worked in various educational projects, I [...]

Operation Bootstrap (1947)

Operation Bootstrap (1947) Rice fields in the west valley in Puerto Rico The 1947 industrial program known as Operación "Manos a la Obra," or Operation Bootstrap, marked the beginning of a new stage of industrial planning based on external capital and tax exemptions. The origin of the program was the Ley de Incentivos Industriales (Industrial [...]

Operation Commonwealth

Operation Commonwealth The preamble of the Puerto Rico Constitution reads as follows: "We, the people of Puerto Rico, in order to organize ourselves politically on a fully democratic basis, to promote the general welfare, and to secure for ourselves and our posterity the complete enjoyment of human rights, placing our trust in Almighty God, do [...]

Operation Serenity

Operation Serenity The history of Puerto Rico shows that during the 1950s, the Popular Democratic Party (PPD, for its Spanish acronym) government bet on socio-economic development based on modernization and industrialization. The results of this process, while they did lead to economic change, accentuated consumerism and the modern U.S. model of entities growing larger. Governmental [...]

Organization of the Executive Branch

Organization of the Executive Branch The branch of government that administers the state is the executive branch. Although in theory, public policy is determined by civil society through direct representation and participation in the legislative branch (the Legislature is the only institution that can approve laws), and the role of the executive branch is merely to administer [...]