Opportunity Zones and How to qualify for CDBG-DR funds

January 30, 2019 – These were two of the seminars that the Puerto Rico Builder’s Association (PRBA) recently offered as part of its continued compromise with its members and all professionals from the island in way to keep them informed on new challenges and opportunities.

Opportunity Zones Seminary

The Puerto Rico Builders Association (PRBA) in collaboration with the Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce presented the Opportunity Zones Seminar. The agenda of this seminar ratified the importance of the construction industry’s role in the reconstruction of Puerto Rico. With the collaboration of local and international firms, the PRBA provoked an in-depth conversation on the opportunities the recent natural disasters brought. The attendees had firsthand information on the government master plan by the Governor Chief of Staff, Raúl Maldonado, Esq., and the Secretary of the Department of Economic Development and Commerce, Manuel Laboy, PE. The Opportunity Zones on Real Estate topic was also discussed with the collaboration of Rafael Rojo, CEO and Chairman of VRM Companies; the executive director of the Public-Private Partnership Authority, Omar Marrero Esq., and the president of PRISA Group, Federico Stubbe Jr.

Opportunity Zones on New and Existing businesses were also explored at this seminar with the participation of the Chief Investment Officer for LifeAfar, CPA. Eric Berman, the Chief Risk Officer for the Regional Opportunity Outcome Fund, Lorne Joseph, the General Director for Ramírez & Co., Fernando Viñas and the Senior VP and Corporate Credit Division Manager at Banco Popular, CPA Jorge Aldarondo.

Relevant information on How to Establish Alliances on Opportunity Zones were also provided. Mike Eickhoff, Managing Director, Credits and Incentives from Kevane Grant Thorton alongside other investment funds manager collaborated on providing relevant information to all attendees.

How to qualify for CDBG-DR funds

With the participation of over 250 attendees interested in obtaining information on How to Qualify for Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Relief (CDBG-DR) funds, the Puerto Rico Builders Association offered a seminar in which the specific requirements for were discussed. Michelle Foster who serves as VP, Innovation Services for Home Innovation Research Labs where she oversees NGBS Green, the certification program based on the National Green Building Standard ICC/ASHRAE – 700 contributed by developing a conversation on the Sustainable Construction requirements and the National Green Building Standard. Luis Carlos Fernández, Esq. from the Puerto Rico Housing Department, shared relevant information on the Qualification Requirements for Existing and Newly Built Homes. The seminar also included the participation of the PRBA chairman, Emilio Colón-Zavala, PE, who deepened on the importance of the Building Code Considerations, The Resilient Construction Standard and Green Building Standard.

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