" What we're having in Puerto Rico is that because of incentives that the government created, certain laws to attract people of great wealth to live here on the island — I presume for a kind of a theory of trickle-down economics — we have some very wealthy people who are buying up buildings and creating whole buildings of Airbnbs. By doing so, they not only change the character of the neighborhood, they also bypass all of the laws in place that require formal bed and breakfasts, hotels, guesthouses, to have all sorts of permits from fire ... they have white-glove inspections. They bypass all of this kind of requirement.
"And as I said, they're taking whole buildings that used to be owned by people who lived there, or rented by long-term renters, and converting them — actually chopping them up often. Actually, we live in an historic zone here in Old San Juan, and they are doing away with all of the requirements of how you rebuild in a historic zone. They're chopping buildings up, they're tearing down walls. And we as neighbors are continuously calling the municipal government, the Institute [of] Puerto Rican Culture, trying to get them to come and fine these folks, minimally, stop what they're doing. So it's a disregard not only for the neighborhood, but also for the historic and colonial character of the Old City.