The Cordoba Unicameral Legislature approved by majority the project to modify the province’s retirement and pension system, which, from the new beneficiaries, will be harmonized with national legislation.
The initiative was presented by Governor Juan Schiaretti and, according to the foundations, the modifications aim to “strengthen the solidarity and sustainability of the Retirement Fund” of the province.
At 19.05, with 46 votes in favor, 12 against, 3 abstentions (Matías Chamorro, Gladis Mansilla and Castro) and 9 absent, the Legislature expressly approved the pension reform that had been known hours earlier.
The first to speak in the session (which started at 16) was the legislator for Capital, Leonardo Limia (We do for Córdoba). He was in charge of initiating the debate and justified the change in the pension rules in “the long recession, high inflation and partial assistance from the national state”.
Then, he limited himself to reading the foundations of the bill that the Provincial Executive issued on Wednesday morning. “These reforms are the least burdensome for society as a whole,” Limia said at the end of his presentation.
The project is dealt with through a remote session, by videoconference, according to the official information issued by the Legislature. On the outskirts of the compound, a discreet security operation was mounted before the call of left-wing militants to reject the pension reform.
The changes at the last moment and the null time to debate the pension cut were transversal complaints to the opposition.
Juan Jure (Together for Córdoba) described the debate as “gross pantomime” and claimed: “This legislative branch sleeps, it is inadmissible that the task of the parliamentarian is not declared essential.”
“Today is a dark day for democracy in Córdoba, they changed the consensus for arrogance,” added Jure, but without ruling on the points of the bill.
To its turn. Marcelo Cossar (UCR) stated that the treatment of this law “reminds us of past times of Argentina or other Latin American countries.”
“I am sure that many pro-legislators who are going to vote betraying their principles did not even have time to read the bill,” said Cossar, who reviewed several cuts applied by the provincial government during the quarantine.
“The problem of the Retirement Fund is a symptom of the double failure that the Province has after 20 years of the Justicialist government; due to the economic situation and administrative malpractice. They mortgaged this and the governments that follow,” said Cossar.
“There is a financial crisis, but there is also a political crisis,” said Cossar, one of the few legislators who was on the premises during the debate.
Although he did not say so, he tried to expose the open gap in the ruling party: the handful of legislators who respond to Carlos Caserio threatened to obstruct the session in some way, something that did not prosper due to the lack of firepower of this subgroup.
However, Cossar aligned the Cordoba cut with which the national government applied to retirements.
“They copied the worst of the Alberto Fernández government,” he said, when he tried to align the two executives.
Maria Rosa Marcone (Neighborhood Meeting) described the treatment of social security law as “outrage against democracy and citizens”, due to the ways and substance of the text.
“I hope that the socialist and GEN legislators that make up We Do for Córdoba do not support this project, the only thing that adjusts the most vulnerable by harmonizing the provincial pension system with that of the Nation: Córdoba is on its knees before the creditors and before the Nation, “said the legislator.
From the Left Front, Soledad Díaz García, who was also in the compound, noted that Governor Schiaretti “carried out during the quarantine and in a rude manner a brutal attack on the working class as a whole and, in particular, on the retirees.”
And he said to his colleagues in the ruling party: “If you vote on this project, you should be considered thieves of a labor movement, and as thieves you will have to answer for this theft from retirees.”
Luciana Echevarría, of the MST, said that it is an attack “on a risk group that during the pandemic cannot leave their home or buy medicines.”
He drew up a summary of the social security laws passed during the governments of De la Sota and Schiaretti, to support his argument: “With this project, they complete the harmonization with the national system to attack the retirement credit.”
To its turn, Daniela Gudiño, of Together for Change, followed the analysis that Mario Negri, his political boss, had made during the morning: “Córdoba gives Kirchnerism what Kirchnerism asks for: the famous harmonization. Córdoba ended up kneeling before Kirchnerism,” he assured.
Dante Rossi (UCR) retrieved from the legislative archive the road map that had the pension cuts approved during the Peronist governments: they were always presented at the last minute and brought to the site without debate. This time that “tradition” was maintained.
Rossi recovered the concept of “administrative malpractice” to accuse Governor Schiaretti of taking public debt in foreign currency “irresponsibly” due to the insolvency of the Argentine peso against the dollar.
“By not giving increases in the coming months, retirements will be liquefied until they collect 67 percent of what an asset charges; it is a new cut to retirees to save the government’s ineffectiveness,” said Rossi.
“As opponents, we accompanied the Government of Josè Manuel de la Sota to the Supreme Court to defend the Retirement Fund and the assets of the people of Cordoba, and today the Fund is harmonized with the national regime: review what you said when you defended the Fund” Rossi said, speaking rhetorically to the ruling party.
Rossi finished off his exposition “accusing” Peronism of “looking more and more like the vice president of the Nation”.
“The king is naked!” scream Aurelio García Elorrio (Neighborhood Meeting) from home. “This government crashed the merry-go-round; it was impossible to break the province of Córdoba and you did it when you got into debt in dollars in the partnership you had with (Mauricio) Macri,” he chimed.
“They have a default technical for his malpractice; and it has a default politician: they no longer govern anything, they are at the mercy of the national government, “he said and called the officials” cowards. “
“We are not going to accompany this project because we are not bullies: you cannot analyze a project that changes the lives of 100,000 people in one hour,” he said, confused and left the Zoom meeting.
With the passing of the hours, the opposing speeches were redundant regarding the complaint by the forms, in particular by the lack of treatment in the law.
Orlando Arduh He raised the temperature when he accused Hacemos por Córdoba of “subjugating rights without even mediating dialogue, with the arrogance that characterizes them.”
“You broke the Box, you emptied it, and you were the ones who approved the cuts and deferrals. The cynicism of We Do for Córdoba makes me think that phase 3 of the decreed quarantine is a smokescreen to cushion the impact that the modifications that they are going to approve. They are irresponsible: they lied when they said that they would never level down. They said that they would never bow to the national power. A lie! “he said.
Defense of Fortune
As in every debate, the last speaker was the president of the ruling party, Francisco Fortuna.
“Those of us who have the constitutional responsibility for sustaining the Retirement Fund are the government officials. It is very awkward to ignore the factors that aggressively influence public funds today,” he said, and put on the table the strongest card of his arguments: responsibility of government.
“We have a projection of 35 billion deficits, which we have to resolve immediately. If we do not take the resolutions that we must take, we would not be able to pay in a timely manner.”
Fortuna got into the mud when she remembered Decree 1777, signed by Ramón Mestre, an instrument that cut pensions by 18 percent.
“When one does not have the responsibility to govern, it is easy to express an opinion. The situation of the Retirement Fund cannot wait any longer: solutions are urgently needed to improve the sustainability of the Fund,” Fortuna said.
“We are responsible for the sanction of this law, we do it with the conviction of knowing that we do it for all Cordovan people. The responsibility of the Government is not only to pay wages, but the well-being of the 3.5 million inhabitants,” Fortuna said. to close the debate.
- The modifications will imply setting a pension amount equal to 70% of the deceased’s retirement, instead of the current 75%, in line with national regulations.
- All pensions will be calculated as 82% of the net salary of the personal contribution. Deferral. To give financial consistency to the system, the project points out, “it is provided that the increases received by the assets be transferred to the liabilities the following month.”
- The parliamentary proposal equates the magistrates regime with that provided at the national level, raising the retirement age of judges from 60 to 65 years.
- As for pensions, it extends the period of coverage of the pension of the sons and daughters who study, up to the age of 23 years (with the current legislation the benefit is suspended when the son turns 18).
- It also provides for the increase in the minimum retirement to $ 17,000 and it is guaranteed that no Cordovan retirees with a single income will receive less than $ 25,000.
- The initiative has already begun to generate massive rejection from the different union sectors and also from local opposition politicians.