CÓRDOBA.- Although the co-participation federal is an important source of income for the provinces and the City of Buenos Aires (CABA), for years they left consolidating other alternatives for fund transfers from the Nation. CABA is discriminated against in the co-participation -it contributes more than 20% of the national collection and receives 1.4% of the funds- but not so in the expense that is executed with national funds.
For example, in the city of Buenos Aires the Nation takes charge of the financing of services that, in the rest of the country, are in charge of local governments: transport, water, electricity and labor justice. Until 2021, the Prefecture that patrolled Puerto Madero added to this combo.
More than two years ago -since September 2020-, the head of the Buenos Aires government, Horacio Rodriguez LarretaHe awaits a ruling from the Supreme Court that allows him to recover funds from the co-participation that the Nation cut him first by decree and, later, by law. Alberto Fernández decreed a removal of 1.4 points of co-participation to the City to allocate those funds to Axel Kicillof and to turn off the protests of the Buenos Aires police, which reached the door of the Quinta de Olivos. In November 2020, by law, Kirchnerism with provincial allies set a fixed amount for the City for security.
In January 2016, one month after taking office, the then president Mauricio Macri, As soon as the transfer of the Federal Police to the City was approved, the co-participation increased from 1.4% to 3.75%, a percentage that was later reduced to 3.5%. According to calculations by the management of Alberto Fernandez -in which the governors agreed- that amount exceeded what was necessary to sustain the transferred security. It is also true that various provincial officials understand that that number exceeded and the current one does not reach.
From Idesa, the economist George Hill estimates that -including social plans- the Nation allocates around 20% of the budget to CABA: “Part of it is explained because the bureaucracy that supports the national State is mostly located in the City; but the concentration is enhanced because with national resources the public services consumed by the inhabitants of Caba are subsidized, such as electricity, water, gas, transportation, justice, part of the securityservices that in the interior are in charge of the local levels”.
For the economist, at one point, “the President becomes the head of the Buenos Aires government”. In your opinion, you have to Eliminate co-participation and return to the provinces powers to collect taxes so that they can finance themselves and, in parallel, create a convergence fund, to accelerate the development of the most backward areas. The distribution must be “conditional” to the fulfillment of certain parameters.
The fiscal pact signed in 2017 during the Juntos por el Cambio government, it included “eliminating differential subsidies for the Buenos Aires Metropolitan Area in energy for the 2019 financial year and in transportation for the 2021 financial year.” With the Fernández administration that agreement came to nothing.
Several of the provincial negotiators who intervened in the design of the original pact reminded before THE NATION that the national ministers resisted the transfer of AySA to CABA and Buenos Aires. They put forward as an argument that the company had international credits that were put at risk if it changed its orbit.
The Edenor and Edesur’s debts with Cammesa -of $500,000 million, they concentrate half- according to what was approved in the 2023 budget, if the companies do not pay them, they should cover the national treasury. In the rest of the country it is local governments.
In the case of AySA, a potable water and sewage treatment concessionaire in CABA and 26 suburban districts, its balance sheet had a financial deficit of almost $80,000 million. The deficit was authorized at the beginning of November by a decision of the Minister of Economy, Sergio Massahusband of the head of AySA, Malena Galmarini. As far as transportation is concerned, the Metropolitan Area of Buenos Aires received 85% of the total national subsidies, including buses and trains.
The interior receives about $46,000 million from the Compensation Fundwhile the city and province of Buenos Aires receive transfers from the Treasury for $300,000 million a yearif trains are also taken into account, in addition to buses. In the distribution of transport subsidies, to the BOTH are destined $24,700 million and $3,800 million go inside.
Last April, the national senator for Cordoba Peronism, Alejandra Vigo, presented a bill to transfer AySA, Edenor and Edesur to the city and province of Buenos Aires. “We want the subsidies that arise from everyone’s efforts to be distributed by law, and not by the will of the current government: the interior cannot continue to subsidize AMBA,” he stated.
Nineteen governors signed a statement supporting the removal of part of the co-participation from the city of Buenos Aires. From a legal point of view, the Casa Rosada can do with that money whatever it wants, because it corresponds to the part of the resources that corresponds to it (it did not retract from the “cake” of the provinces). In addition to transferring a part to Kicillof to solve the police conflict, the minister Eduardo “Wado” de Pedro He promised that it would be used to fight drug trafficking in Santa Fe, Misiones and Salta, a commitment that was not later verified.