Hurricane Maria

Updated 5:58 p.m. ET

The last of the federal government's power restoration crews are scheduled to leave Puerto Rico when their contract expires next week, leaving the island's power utility with the task of energizing the last 1.5 percent of customers still waiting eight months after Hurricane Maria.

But on Wednesday, the island's representative in Congress asked the federal government not to send its crews home.

Not all displaced students from Puerto Rico who enrolled in central Florida schools have stayed.

Orange County Schools said 2,238 students from Puerto Rico are currently enrolled. They came after Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Students enroll and then withdraw as families figure out living situations. Another 1,185 new Puerto Rican students have left the district this school year.

Englewood Elementary Principal Alex Reyes said he’s heard many of them have gone back to the island.

The names of four deadly hurricanes that slammed parts of the United States, Central America and the Caribbean last year are being retired.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Thursday that hurricane names Harvey, Irma, Maria and Nate will be replaced with Harold, Idalia, Margot and Nigel. The new names will make their debut during the 2023 hurricane season.

Miami Herald Archive

Hurricane Maria, the sixth fastest intensifying hurricane on record, likely slammed parts of mountainous Puerto Rico with fiercer winds than previously reported, the National Hurricane Center said Monday in a final assessment of the lethal storm.

Maria struck the island’s southeast coast Sept. 20, lingering for nearly eight hours and leaving a death toll that remains a matter of dispute.

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Guests for Sundial Wednesday, April 4 2018:

The West Palm Beach City Commission adopted a “welcoming city” immigration policy last year. The measure led the county to fall under the suspicion of the Department of Justice for deliberately withholding information regarding the immigration status of people taken into custody.

To reach the Martinez home in Puerto Rico's central mountains, social worker Eileen Calderon steers around piles of dirt, treacherous potholes and power company trucks that block the road. Finally, we pull up to a sagging cement home, the roof done in by Hurricane Maria. Laundry hangs under a tarp, and a cat is tied to a leash outside the door.

Amidst the aftermath of Hurricane Maria’s devastating effects on Puerto Rico, Florida lawmakers believe the State has been inactive when tackling the issue of displaced Puerto Ricans. This has opened the floodgates for an issue Florida has been dealing with for years.

Greg Allen / NPR

A blackout hit northern Puerto Rico late Sunday after an explosion set off a big fire at a main power substation in the U.S. territory.

Health care in the U.S. Virgin Islands remains in a critical state, five months after Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria pummeled the region.

The only hospital on St. Thomas, the Schneider Regional Medical Center, serves some 55,000 residents between the islands of St. Thomas and St. John. Schneider's facilities suffered major structural damage, forcing a decrease in its range of services, mass transfers of its patients, staff departures and significant losses in revenue. Only about one-third of the beds are currently available for patient care.

Florida Facing Affordable Housing Crisis

Feb 1, 2018

In the wake of natural disasters, stagnant wages and a growing separation of wealth, Florida is suffering from an affordable housing catastrophe and concern is growing statewide.

WMFE

FEMA is extending housing assistance for Puerto Ricans displaced by Hurricane Maria.

The extension lasts through March 20. Puerto Rico’s government asked for the extension of the Transitional Sheltering Assistance Program as more than a third of the island remains without power.

But the Rev. Jose Nieves of the First United Methodist Church of Kissimmee says many families and hotels where they are staying have not yet gotten the word.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

More than three months after Hurricane Maria pummeled Puerto Rico, there are thousands on the island still without power and basic necessities and nearly 300,000 people have come to Florida seeking refuge.

One hundred days ago, powerful Category 4 Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico leaving the island severely crippled and the more than 3 million U.S. citizens desperate for help.

Now, Puerto Ricans on the island and U.S. mainland are feeling angry and the lack of progress and they are organizing to demand help for Puerto Rico.

Though life has improved for some Puerto Ricans on the island more than three months since Maria hit, the Caribbean island is still in recovery mode.

On a normal night, dozens of tourists would be gaping at the glowing sea life on Mosquito Bay, a cove named after a legendary pirate ship in Vieques, Puerto Rico. But on a night in mid-December, it's empty. The loudest sounds are the frogs croaking in the mangroves.

An international human rights group, Refugees International, has issued a scathing report on the U.S. response in Puerto Rico to Hurricane Maria. The group says "poor coordination and logistics on the ground" by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Puerto Rican government "seriously undermined the effectiveness of the aid delivery process."

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