Senate CCJ approves Transition PEC

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After a long session, the Constitution and Justice Committee (CCJ) of the Senate approved the proposed amendment to the Constitution called PEC da Transição. The proposal aims to guarantee resources for social programs in the 2023 Union Budget, such as the continuity of the payment of Bolsa Família/Auxílio Brazil of R$ 600 and the real increase in the minimum wage from January.

As agreed in a meeting, yesterday (5), at the official residence of the Chamber of Deputies, the report reduces the deadline for the Bolsa Família exception to the spending ceiling to two years and not four years, as was originally the goal of the transition team .

According to the proposal, R$ 175 billion will be allocated for the payment of Bolsa Família, in the amount of R$ 600 per month, plus R$ 150 per child up to six years old in 2023, in addition to resources to expand investments. Now, the PEC goes to vote in the plenary of the House. The forecast is to vote on the text in the session tomorrow (7).

There were about four hours of discussion, with some senators wanting to remove articles from the text that, according to them, were not within the consensus of aid to needy families. The PEC provides, in addition to an “extra-ceiling” amount for payment of the aid, extra figures for expenses with socio-environmental programs and the fight against climate change.

The text also provides for the exclusion of the expenditure ceiling for expenses for the direct execution of works and engineering services. “This will allow works to be carried out by the Army construction engineering battalions in agreements with states and municipalities”, said the rapporteur for the PEC, Senator Alexandre Silveira (PSD-MG).

The main points of divergence, according to Senator Jaques Wagner (PT-BA), would be the deadline for the PEC, the date of submission of the new fiscal framework and the reduction of the impact of the proposal by R$ 30 billion. Part of the senators suggested that the expansion of expenses for the payment would only be valid for one year. They also demanded that the proposal for a new fiscal framework to replace the spending cap be forwarded within six months after the new government takes office. Initially, the deadline would be one year, but it was reduced after agreement.

Senators from the base of the current government wanted more time to discuss the issue and asked for a public hearing to be held to discuss the issue. In practice, this public hearing would only postpone the date of voting on the PEC both in the CCJ and in the Senate plenary.

A request to hold a public hearing was voted on by the committee, but was rejected.

When sent to the plenary, the text will need to be approved by at least 49 senators in two rounds of voting. After winning the Senate stage, the PEC will proceed for analysis by the deputies. In the Chamber, also in two shifts, the PEC will need the support of 308 parliamentarians so that it can be enacted before Christmas.

Translated to english by RJ983

From Brazil, by EBC News

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