Brazil. Budget Rapporteur and Alckmin propose “PEC for the Transition” to guarantee funds for the Lula administration

Cristiane Sampaio, Brasil de Fato / Latin American Summary, November 4, 2022.

Photo: Lula’s team met with Marcelo Castro this Thursday (3), at the address of the MDB, in the Federal Senate – Adviser Jean Paul Prates (PT-RN)

Marcelo Castro said that this is the “most restrictive budget and that it brings more holes in our history”

The National Congress will be able to analyze and vote before the end of the year on a constitutional reform proposal that has already been baptized as the “PEC of the Transition.” The objective is that this text takes into account the additional funds that will have to be be foreseen in the 2023 Budget to finance programs and actions for the first year of the Lula (PT) administration.

The announcement about the proposal of the measure was made after a meeting that took place between the rapporteur of the 2023 Budget, Senator Marcelo Castro (MDB-PI), the elected vice president, Geraldo Alckmin (PSB), and a delegation of senators and deputies linked to the PT. The group met this Thursday (3), in the Senate, in what was the first official agenda of the transition team.

The National Congress is discussing the Annual Budget Bill (PLOA) for next year. Sent by the Bolsonaro government, the text foresees a minimum wage of R$ 1,302 starting in January, a basic interest rate of 12.5% ​​and inflation of 4.6% in 2023.

The numbers, however, will only close when the Legislature finally approves the text of the PLOA, which should happen on December 16, according to the president of the Mixed Budget Commission (CMO), deputy Celso Sabino (União-PA). Meanwhile, the team featured by Lula to lead the transition, he works together with parliamentarians to sew solutions that avoid a gap in the first year of management.

The idea of ​​the PEC was proposed by the group as a way to resolve the impasse related to the discrepancy between the budget planned by the Bolsonaro administration for next year and the campaign promises of the newly elected president. The team was able to detail the numbers next week, but the situation is already worrying the group.

“It certainly is the tightest budget which brings the biggest scoop in our history, [en] year after year we have reduced investments. An important body like the DNIT [Departamento Nacional de Infraestructura de Transporte] this year it only has R$ 6.7 billion. This is insufficient even for the maintenance of our network. We already had, in past governments, an average investment in the DNIT of around R$ 15 billion”, compared Marcelo Castro.

He pointed out that the DNIT already had an annual budget of R$ 20 billion. “Although we are almost ten years behind and with inflation throughout this period, we are decreasing in nominal values,” lamented the senator.

combination

Lula’s team has, at the center of the negotiating table, the concern of guaranteeing the financing of programs such as Bolsa Família, in addition to several other measures of a social nature promised by the PT during the campaign. Castro stressed that there are a number of challenges ahead in the midst of Budget 2023 negotiations.

“There is no recourse for the Bolsa Família, for the [programa] Popular Pharmacy, for indigenous health, for school feeding, so there are many deficiencies in the budget, but we have to work within the reality that the current government legitimately presents and, legitimately, the elected government is making efforts to modify it so that it adapts to the way of governing of the new ruler legitimately elected by the Brazilian people”, he said.

According to Castro, the idea is that the proposal for the approval of the “PEC for the Transition” is now presented to other political leaders related to the issue. The pro-Lula group understands that it is necessary to make exceptions outside the limits of the Expenditure Ceiling for expenses considered “inevitable.”

“It’s like the Bolsa Família in the value of R$ 600, which is a public commitment assumed by President Lula. And it would be inconceivable for 21.6 million families to receive only R$400 as of January,” Castro said.

Calendar

The script of the negotiations will go through new chapters as of Monday (7), when the transition team meets directly with Lula. Then, on Tuesday (8), the group has a new meeting with Senator Marcelo Castro. There will also be agendas with the presidents of the Senate, Rodrigo Pacheco (PSD-MG), and of the Chamber, Arthur Lira (PP-AL), as well as with the president of the CMO, deputy Celso Sabino.

According to Alckmin, one of the concerns of the new government is to avoid the interruption of services in the country. “It’s not suitable in the budget sent to the National Congress, then there is a need to have a complement to guarantee services, works and, at the same time, for example, the Bolsa Família of R$ 600 reais”.

Also according to the team, the goal is for the PEC to be processed urgently, since it would have to be approved in two rounds by the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate in December 2023 for it to enter into force. be very fast because there are still a series of procedures, so speed and agility are very important”, reinforced Alckmin.

The newly elected senator Wellington Dias (PT-PI) said that a technical team will work on the text of the PEC until next week. “I would say that the big challenge is time. We will have to have the conditions to draft this constitutional amendment from Tuesday, have the definition of values ​​and also the position of President Lula from the presentation that will be made”.

Structure

The transition team will have 50 names and will continue to be formally constituted with the Official Gazette (DOU) as of Monday (7), the same date on which the most operational work of the group will begin at the Banco do Brasil Cultural Center (CCBB), in Brasilia (DF), a place that has been the headquarters of other transitional government offices.

Editing: Nicolau Soares

Brazil. Budget Rapporteur and Alckmin propose “PEC for the Transition” to guarantee funds for the Lula administration – Latin American Summary