President Medina backs Higuey City Homes development
US legislators mission meets with President Medina
Minister of Interior and Police urges Haiti to provide documents to its citizens
Central Bank releases RD$20 billion from bank legal reserve
Free spending Dominican legislators
El País story says Brazilian call girls were used to increase Odebrecht’s sales
Customs seizes 7-million units of contraband cigarettes
Charcoal sales continue in Barahona
Police arrest four accused of stealing US$223,000 in family home robbery
Adrian Beltre reaches the 3,000th hit milestone
DR wins U17 Centrobasket
Dominican men lose 2-3 to USA in volleyball



President Medina backs Higuey City Homes development
President Danilo Medina was in La Altagracia province in the East on Friday, 28 July 2017, for the start of construction of the Higuey City Homes low-cost housing development. The project calls for a RD$1.2 billion investment and is located at Km 2 of the Higuey-Yuma road. On an area of 1,110,000 square meters, 944 apartments will be built.

Promoter Junior Antonio Taveras, president of Grupo TC Realtors, said that 300 of the units have already been sold. The apartments are built under the Trust Law 189-11. The project is being developed by Grupo TC Realtors and Concremax.

Present were Senator Amable Aristy Castro, La Altagracia governor Ramon Guilamo, Frank Rainieri of the Pnta Cana group, and Higuey Mayor Karina Aristy.

https://presidencia.gob.do/noticias/...omes-viviendas


US legislators mission meets with President Medina
President Danilo Medina hosted a delegation of US legislators at the Presidential Palace on Saturday, 29 July 2017. The delegation was head by Adriano Miguel Espaillat, D-NY, a member of the US House of Representatives.
The visiting legislators were Jeff Duncan, Albio Sires, Doug Lamborn, Robin Kelly, David Schweikert, Norma Torres, Matt Gaetz, Scott Taylor.

On the courtesy visit, they were accompanied by Robert Copley, new attache d’affaires of the US Embassy.
Also present during the meeting was Minister of the Presidency Gustavo Montalvo and Minister of Foreign Relations Miguel Vargas.

Minister Miguel Vargas said that the visit was a follow up to the relations with the leading trading partner of the country.

https://presidencia.gob.do/noticias/...-danilo-medina


Minister of Interior and Police urges Haiti to provide documents to its citizens
Minister of Interior and Police Carlos Amarante Baret demanded that the government of Haiti fulfill its responsibility of providing legal documents to their nationals so that Haitians who have applied under the National Foreigner Status Legalization Plan (PNRE) in the Dominican Republic can complete their paperwork.

Amarante urged that President of Haiti Jovenel Moise help the Haitian diaspora living in the Dominican Republic and said he does not believe that the National Migration Council will once again extend the new deadline of the plan.

Amarante said that the Dominican authorities would not issue residency to any foreigner who does not meet the minimum requirements established in the Migration Law. He said the 243,000 people who have applied and not turned in the required documents need to do so before August 2018 or they will face deportation.

http://elnacional.com.do/piden-haiti...us-ciudadanos/


Central Bank releases RD$20 billion from bank legal reserve
On Thursday, 27 July 2017, the Monetary Board approved that commercial banks be able to use RD$20 billion from the bank’s legal reserves to make low interest loans at a maximum of 8% interest to finance productive sectors, including manufacturing, small business and exports. Mortgage loans are capped at 9% because of the longer terms. Nevertheless, the money is also authorized for consumer loans, including vehicle purchases.

A note from the Central Bank states: “This measure will contribute to the stimulation of the economy, by increasing the capacity of banks to loan money to the private sector, which, in turn, will increase the productivity of businesses to provide goods and services national and international markets”.

A spokesperson for the Central Bank believes that through this program, many jobs will be created that will lead to an increase demand for local products, thus stimulating the national economy even more.

The Central Bank reduced by 2.2 percentage points the coefficient required for the legal reserve of banks as of 1 August. This means banks will have available an additional RD$20,423.2 million for lending.

The Monetary Board ordered that the funds be placed:
RD$4.5 billion for the export sector or 22%
RD$4 billion for the manufacturing sector or 20%
RD$1.7 billion for the farming sector or 8%
RD$4 billion for property mortgages or 20%
RD$3.7 billion for commerce and small business or 18%
RD$2.5 billion for consumer loans or 12%.

http://eldia.com.do/el-banco-central...-mil-millones/


Free spending Dominican legislators
A story in Diario Libre reveals that Congress in the first half of the year has spent double what had been budgeted for per diem and representation expenditures. The budget allotted RD$64,138,045 for expenses. However, the Chamber of Deputies legislators spent RD$110 million for per diem from 1 January to 30 June 2017.

Diario Libre points out that the Chamber of Deputies under Lucia Medina spent RD$21 million in the clothing chapter for the first half of the year. The Chamber of Deputies had a budget for RD$5,761,000.

In meals paid by taxpayers, the Chamber of Deputies, and its 178 legislators, spent RD$36 million for the first six months of the year.

This compares to RD$21 million, the 32 Dominican senators, under Senator Reinaldo Pared Perez, spent during the first six months of the year.

https://www.diariolibre.com/noticias...tado-LX7734683


El País story says Brazilian call girls were used to increase Odebrecht’s sales
The airwaves were ablaze on Friday as talk shows covered from end to end the El País Spanish newspaper story that revealed that Odebrecht paid for parties with women brought from Brazil to “entertain” politicians in the Dominican Republic. Odebrecht legal advisor, Rodrigo Tacla, is being tried for complicity, money laundering and criminal organization in Spain instead of Brazil because he has dual Spanish-Brazilian nationality. He said the companies also used photos taken during the parties to later extort the officers. Tacla, in the interview, also highlights the “very close” relations of President Danilo Medina with the Brazilian construction company. Tacla served as a lawyer for Odebrecht through 2016.

“Political campaigns gifts, parties, prostitutes… All was used to attract the interest of politicians. Presidents and other heads of state in the region granted Odebrecht public works contracts. The contracts were the main source of revenue of Odebrecht, the largest Latin American construction firm,” tells the story in El Pais.

The El Pais interview tells about how in 2015 Odebrecht moved its Department for Structured Operations (the company’s bribes division) from Sao Paulo to Santo Domingo. The lawyer said this was done to have greater control in the event of criminal or legal investigations. Tacla worked in the department that El Pais described as “the hermetic business unit specialized in ‘buying goodwill’.”

Tacla says that there are many in the overpricing and bribes corruption scheme whose names have not yet come forward. El Pais describes the 44-year old lawyer Tacla as a “ticking time bomb.”

In an official statement from Brazil, Odebrecht denied that Tacla was a company lawyer. Odebrecht describes him as a financial operator who participated in illicit operations already reported by Odebrecht to the authorities as part of its collaboration.

The Green March Movement observed that the statements by Tacla further implicates President Danilo Medina in the Odebrecht case of bribes, overpricing and illegal electoral campaign financing.

Guillermo Moreno in an opinion piece in Diario Libre published on 31 July 2017, focuses on the Rodrigo Tacla’s answers to El Pais questions and again focuses on President Danilo Medina and Odebrecht and the deal signed between the Dominican Attorney General Office and the Brazilian company. “That is, the agreement with Odebrecht in the country is an extension of the same corruption that it pretends to be investigating. The difference is that while before, the Odebrecht’s accomplice was the government officer that contracted the public work or sought the financing or approved the contract in Congress, now it is the Public Ministry [Attorney General Office] and the Judicial Branch that guarantee impunity to the Odebrecht executives and some of the corrupt local officers,” he writes.

https://elpais.com/internacional/201...04_099704.html
http://eldia.com.do/odebrecht-niega-...ea-su-abogado/
http://www.7dias.com.do/portada/2017...te-medina.html
https://www.diariolibre.com/opinion/en-directo


Customs seizes 7-million units of contraband cigarettes
A contraband shipment of 700 boxes of 10,000 units each of Patroncito Menthol cigarettes from Panama was seized at Haina Oriental port. The shipment was coming from Panama, said the General Customs Agency (DGA). The merchandise was not declared and was camouflaged with water bottles. The shipment should have paid RD$95 million in taxes. The DGA also reported that the cigarettes and the water had expired expiration dates.


Charcoal sales continue in Barahona
A report in El Nacional reveals that despite efforts by the government, the sale of illegally manufactured charcoal continues strong in Enriquillo, in the southwest part of the country. The report explains that despite the efforts of the Ministry of Environment the destruction of forests to produce charcoal and its commercialization continue.

The Ministry reported recently of having seized 60 sacks of charcoal, destroying several charcoal ovens and arresting 10 Haitians in operations carried out with the backing of the Servicio Nacional de Protección Ambiental (SENPA) and the Procuraduría Ambiental in the municipalities of Paraiso, Vicente Noble, La Guazara and Canoa. Another 130 bags of charcoal were seized in Sierra de Martín García (Loma del Curro).

Miguel Mella, in charge of the Ministry of Environment in the area, said that the increase in production and marketing of charcoal in the border areas is due to the presence of Haitians.

http://elnacional.com.do/continua-co...l-en-zona-sur/


Police arrest four accused of stealing US$223,000 in family home robbery
The National Police announced on Friday, 28 July 2017, the arrest of four men accused of being part of a gang, including five other persons, that allegedly stole US$223,000 from a Los Ríos residence in Santo Domingo.

The arrested are Jorge Luis Valdez Figuereo, Salvador Antonio López (alias Pinguilo), Cuban Junior Correa González, and Matías Coiscou Vargas (alias Keko).
The thieves also stole jewelry and a mobile phone.

The Police said that Valdez Figuereo confessed that his spouse, Deyanira Barrera Bravo, who worked as a main in the house, tipped him off about the large sum of money that was kept in the house that led to the planning of the robbery.

The police are on the trail of Walter Rosendo Santana Pérez, Otto Gaspar Féliz Alcántara, and two others identified as Tavitico and El Fuerte.

Valdez Figuereo says that they distributed the cash among themselves.

http://www.policianacional.gob.do/de...rito-nacional/
http://www.7dias.com.do/portada/2017...-los-rios.html
http://www.listindiario.com/la-repub...sa-en-los-rios


Adrian Beltre reaches the 3,000th hit milestone
38-year old Adrian Beltré became the first Dominican Republic native to reach the 3,000 hits in Major League Baseball milestone. He is also the 31st player in Major League Baseball history to reach 3,000 hits.

On Sunday, 30 July 2017, Beltré got hit number 3,000 in the fourth inning of the game of the Texas Rangers vs. Baltimore Orioles.

The milestone is regarded as Beltré’s eventual passport to the Hall of Fame. The only members of the 3,000-hit club not in the Hall of Fame are either active (Ichiro Suzuki), not yet eligible (Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez) or tainted by scandal (Pete Rose, Rafael Palmeiro).

The Dallas News, calling Beltré “a legend,” reported that the Dominican-born player is now just the fifth player in history to have at least five Gold Gloves and 450 home runs in addition to the 3,000 hits. The only others who have accomplished those feats are Willie Mays, Carl Yastrzemski, David Winfield and Alex Rodriguez.

https://sportsday.dallasnews.com/tex...000-vs-orioles


DR wins U17 Centrobasket
The Dominican Republic’s U17 basketball team defeated Puerto Rico in the showdown on Sunday, 30 July 2017 for the Centrobasket U17 gold at the Pabellón de Voleibol in Santo Domingo.

It was never easy and the score reflects this – 81 to 80. The Dominican team was ahead in the first half 35-26, but had to struggle to maintain the victory. FIBA reports that the Puerto Ricans fought back into the game and tied the game at 58 at the end of the third quarter. The last 10 minutes were emotional and exciting, it was a give and take, at the end the Dominicans celebrated the win and the championship.

Puerto Rico thus won silver, and Panama was third. Mexico, US Virgin Islands, Jamaica, Bahamas and Guyana followed in the standing. The DR, Puerto Rico and Panama qualified to play in the FIBA U18 Americas Championship 2018.

http://www.fiba.com/centrobasket/u17...-santo-domingo
http://www.fiba.com/centrobasket/u17...-santo-domingo


Dominican men lose 2-3 to USA in volleyball
The Dominican men’s volleyball team once again put up a good fight in match against Team USA. The match for the 5th place in the 12th Men’s Pan American Cup at Gaineau, Canada’s Robert Arena ended 3-2 in favor of the USA (25-15, 22-25, 25-20, 25-27, 13-15. In an earlier game, the DR had defeated the USA 3-0.

During the tournament, the Dominican team also defeated Team Mexico 3-1 (24-26, 26-24, 25-19 and 25-20).

But the DR team dropped matches to Cuba (3-1) and Canada (1-3).

The Dominican team is coached by Orlando Samuel Blackwood, who has said the team needs to be more consistent. He said the tournament is tough because the teams have to play six matches in a row.

https://www.norceca.net/2017%20Event...Cup%202017.htm
http://www.cbc.ca/m/sports/olympics/...-cup-1.4226952