The provisions of this chapter shall apply to the island of Puerto Rico and to the adjacent islands belonging to the United States and waters of those islands; and the name Puerto Rico, as used in this chapter, shall be held to include not only the island of that name, but all the adjacent islands as aforesaid.
48 U.S. Code § 731. Territory included under name Puerto Rico
This chapter, referred to in text, was in the original “this Act”, meaning act Mar. 2, 1917, ch. 145, 39 Stat. 951, as amended, known as the Puerto Rican Federal Relations Act and also popularly known as the Jones Act, which is classified principally to this chapter. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out below and Tables.
Section 1 of act Apr. 12, 1900, was similar to this section, except that it described the adjacent islands and waters of those islands as those lying east of the seventy-fourth meridian of longitude west of Greenwich, which were ceded to the United States by the Government of Spain by the treaty of Dec. 10, 1898, 30 Stat. 1754.
Act July 3, 1950, ch. 446, § 4, 64 Stat. 319, provided, in part, that the act of Mar. 2, 1917, ch. 145, 39 Stat. 951 [enacting this chapter, section 1019 of this title, section 46 of Title 2, The Congress, and section 358 of Title 8, Aliens and Nationality, and amending sections 325, 327, and 328 of former Title 39, Postal Service], may be cited as the “Puerto Rican Federal Relations Act”. The act of Mar. 2, 1917, is also popularly known as the “Jones Act”.
Pub. L. 88–271, Feb. 20, 1964, 78 Stat. 17, as amended by Pub. L. 89–84, July 24, 1965, 79 Stat. 261, established a United States-Puerto Rico Commission on the Status of Puerto Rico to study all factors, including but not limited to applicable laws, treaties, constitutions, and agreements having a bearing on the relationship between the United States and Puerto Rico. The Commission was required to render its report to the President of the United States, the Congress of the United States, the Governor of Puerto Rico, and the Legislative Assembly of Puerto Rico not later than Sept. 30, 1966.
The administration of the Government of Puerto Rico was transferred from the Bureau of Insular Affairs to the Office of Territories (formerly the Division of Territories and Island Possessions and now the Office of Territorial Affairs), in the Department of the Interior by Executive Order No. 6726, eff. May 29, 1934, eff. Mar. 2, 1935. For present government of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, see section 731d of this title.
Ex. Ord. No. 13183, Dec. 23, 2000, 65 F.R. 82889, as amended by Ex. Ord. No. 13209, Apr. 30, 2001, 66 F.R. 22105; Ex. Ord. No. 13319, Dec. 3, 2003, 68 F.R. 68233; Ex. Ord. No. 13517, § 1, Oct. 30, 2009, 74 F.R. 57239, provided:
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:
Section 1. Policy. It is the policy of the executive branch of the Government of the United States of America to help answer the questions that the people of Puerto Rico have asked for years regarding the options for the islands’ future status and the process for realizing an option. Further, it is our policy to consider and develop positions on proposals, without preference among the options, for the Commonwealth’s future status; to discuss such proposals with representatives of the people of Puerto Rico and the Congress; to work with leaders of the Commonwealth and the Congress to clarify the options to enable Puerto Ricans to determine their preference among options for the islands’ future status that are not incompatible with the Constitution and basic laws and policies of the United States; and to implement such an option if chosen by a majority, including helping Puerto Ricans obtain a governing arrangement under which they would vote for national government officials, if they choose such a status. It is also the policy of the executive branch to improve the treatment of Puerto Rico in Federal programs and to promote job creation, education, health care, clean energy, and economic development on the islands.
Sec. 2. The President’s Task Force on Puerto Rico’s Status. There is established a task force to be known as “The President’s Task Force on Puerto Rico’s Status” (Task Force). It shall be composed of designees of each member of the President’s Cabinet and the Deputy Assistant to the President and Director for Intergovernmental Affairs. The Task Force shall be co-chaired by the Attorney General’s designee and the Deputy Assistant to the President and Director for Intergovernmental Affairs.
Sec. 3. Functions. The Task Force shall seek to implement the policy set forth in section 1 of this order. The Task Force shall ensure official attention to and facilitate action on matters related to proposals for Puerto Rico’s status and provide advice and recommendations on such matters to the President and the Congress. The Task Force shall also identify and promote existing Federal initiatives that benefit Puerto Rico; provide advice and recommendations to the President and the Congress on the treatment of Puerto Rico in Federal programs; and provide advice and recommendations to the President and the Congress on policies and initiatives that promote job creation, education, health care, clean energy, and economic development on the islands.
Sec. 4. Report. The Task Force shall submit to the President a report on the actions it has taken to perform the functions set forth in section 3 no later than 1 year from the date of this order. The Task Force shall also report to the President, as appropriate, on other matters relating to the Task Force’s responsibilities under this order.