On September 9, the party leaders of the Chamber of Deputies approved the extension of the protocol for remote parliamentary work. As requested by Juntos por el Cambio, the bills needing further discussion will be debated in person and in compliance with public health requirements. To access the signed document, click here. The president of the legislative branch, Sergio Massa, announced that the debate on judicial reform will take a month and a half. It could be discussed in session in early November. The debate for the 2021 Budget (which the Executive must send to Congress before September 15), will last for a period of at least two months.
The agreement, signed at around 10:00 pm, establishes that deputies from a risk group may request permission to participate remotely. The virtual system will also be used to debate in committee and to sign passed bills. This consensus paves the way for legislators to start debating a number of pending issues.
The party whip of Juntos por el Cambio, Mario Negri, welcomed the agreement to return to in-person sessions to debate bills of “greater institutional importance”, saying all efforts hitherto had been “worthwhile”.
During the meeting, Massa said that discussion of the Judicial Reform bill will last for a month and a half and that there will be two meetings a week to debate the proposals. The committees which will study the bill include Justice, headed by Rodolfo Tahilade from the Frente de Todos; Constitutional Affairs (Pablo González, Frente de Todos), and possibly the Budget and Treasury committee, led by Carlos Heller of Frente de Todos – this last committee at the request of Juntos por el Cambio.
The ‘informative meetings’ will be organized by the presidents and vice presidents of the committees, including deputies from both ruling party and the opposition, tasked with preparing the lists of guests for each meeting.
Although it is not yet known when the debate will begin, it could happen in a session at the beginning of November but this will require further renewal of the session’s protocol.
The agreement reached yesterday will also allow for the discussion of a bill proposing a wealth tax and the “Defense of the Sustainability Guarantee Fund” initiative. Although these issues were not mentioned at last night’s meeting, the situation is now ready for the committees to be convened and to start discussing them.
In other news, the Budget for 2021 is likely to be sent to Congress by the Government on September 15, and the presidency of the Deputies has already announced that it will be dealt with in committee over a period of no less than two months.