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Monday, February 6, 2023
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The Chamber should only vote on changes in the Senate in the PEC dos Precatórios in 2022, says Lira

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A few hours after the Senate approved the PEC (proposed amendment to the Constitution) of the Precatório in two rounds, the president of the Chamber, Arthur Lira (PP-AL), said that the text should be sliced ​​and that the changes made by the neighboring House they should only be considered by Members in 2022.

Lira spoke with journalists after leaving a meeting with party leaders this Thursday afternoon (2) and after the senators approved the PEC, the government mechanism to unlock the payment of the R$ 400 social program Auxílio Brasil as of December.

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As there was a change in the text –which defaults on debts of the Union recognized by the Justice–, the proposal needs to be processed again in the Chamber of Deputies.

The deputy said that he would meet again with the president of the Senate, Rodrigo Pacheco (PSD-MG), to debate the changes in the text, but he stated that the Chamber did not have the legislative conditions to bring to the plenary any substantial changes made.

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“We are going to see the common text of the two Houses. This common text must be promulgated by the two tables [diretoras], and what is left of the common text will have to go to the CCJ [Comissão de Constituição e Justiça], it will have to be admissible, it will have to go to the special commission to return to the plenary in two votes”, he said.

“This is the procedure of the regiment of the Chamber of Deputies, which is a little different from the regiment of the Federal Senate.”

With that, the evaluation, by the deputies, of the changes made by the Senate should only take place in 2022, said Lira. “What is not common will have to go to the CCJ, [e para a comissão especial por] at least ten sessions, at least, and then come to plenary. So I don’t think that this year what is not common can be voted on.”

He stated that the effort is for the common text of the two Houses to be promulgated as soon as possible “to allow more than 20 million families to receive aid, to allow the federal government budget not to be fully used by precatoria in the year of 2022.”

“We let the Senate legislate, as it is regimented, and we are now going to make as much effort as possible to find out what the amendments are, because we definitely do not know it, so that we can analyze it together,” he stated.

“And there is no supremacy of one House over another. Until the texts are equal, the PEC will continue to be voted on.”

In the Senate, the text was approved in the first round by 64 votes in favor and 13 against, in addition to two abstentions.

The senators reached an agreement so that the vote in the second round would take place afterwards, with the proposal being approved again, by 61 votes in favor and 10 against, in addition to one abstention. It needed the support of at least 49 senators, out of a total of 81 parliamentarians in the House.

The PEC dos Precatórios is currently the main agenda of interest of President Jair Bolsonaro in Congress. The objective is to authorize the government to spend more and make viable the promise to raise the value of the Brazil Aid in an attempt to boost Bolsonaro’s reelection campaign in 2022.

In order to increase expenses for next year by around R$ 106 billion, the PEC has two pillars. One measure allows for a dribble in the spending ceiling, retroactively recalculating that limit. The other measure creates a maximum value for the payment of court orders – debts that do not appear on this list will be postponed and paid off in later years.

On Thursday, the government backed down and answered the last four points that were demanded. It accepted that the limit for the payment of court orders is valid until 2026, and not until 2036 as provided for in the previous version.

By reducing the validity period by ten years, the new version of the PEC does not change the effects of the proposal in the 2022 Budget.

In another change announced on Thursday, the government also agreed to make it clear that the increase in spending in 2022, from the approval of the PEC, will be linked to mandatory expenses, in the social area and the extension of the payroll tax exemption.

The text also provides for a mechanism for linking expenses that will no longer be paid in court orders to cover expenses with the social program and in the area of ​​social security, such as pensions, between 2023 and 2026.

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