The Chamber of Deputies approved today (11) the Proposed Amendment to the Constitution (PEC) 13/2021. The proposal prevents the punishment of municipal managers who did not apply the minimum percentages of education spending in 2020 and 2021 due to the covid-19 pandemic. The proposal had already passed the Senate and is now on its way to promulgation.
The justification for approving the PEC is that the pandemic, which forced the suspension of classes and, at the same time, the redirection of funds to the health area, prevented mayors from investing in education a minimum percentage provided for by law. Due to the suspension of face-to-face classes, expenses with school transport and lunch were not necessary.
Opposition parties were against the proposal. For Glauber Braga (PSOL-RJ), a setback in the constitutional floor, even justified by the pandemic, can open a gap for new setbacks and consequent reduction of investment in education.
Tiago Mitraud (Novo-MG) defended the PEC. He believes that congressmen cannot define how managers who are at the forefront, in states and municipalities, should direct investments because, according to him, these managers know better the reality and needs of the population.
The Constitution determines that the Union invests at least 18% in education and states and municipalities at least 25% of the total income from taxes. If the PEC had not been approved in Congress, managers who did not apply the minimum required could face civil or criminal penalties, in addition to administrative sanctions. According to a survey by the Senate Consultancy, only 280 municipalities did not comply with the minimum destination, which represents 5% of the total number of municipalities in the country.