While the Government made official the 6% increase in the gas rate as of June, the Energy Commission of Deputies gave an opinion favorable to the project pushed by Máximo Kirchner and federal blocks so that more than 3 million residents of “cold zones” of 12 provinces of the country have between 30% and 50% discount on their tickets. A vote will be taken in this Thursday’s session.
The project was presented jointly by Máximo Kirchner and Liliana Schwindt from the Frente de Todos; Alejandro “Topo” Rodríguez from Federal Consensus and José Luis Ramón from Federal Unity and Equity. Ramon promised his support for the controversial reform of the public prosecutor’s office in exchange for that law, two weeks ago in a meeting with the Minister of Justice, Martín Soria.
The original text proposed to extend the benefits that Patagonian provinces already have to other cold regions of five provinces: Buenos Aires, Mendoza, San Juan, San Luis and Salta. But this week, it became known that It will also be expanded to include the towns of Córdoba, Santa Fe, Catamarca, Jujuy, Tucumán and La Rioja.
“They are 400 thousand families from Mendoza that they will have the opportunity to have a relief in the bill, having the possibility of allocating the family budget to other issues that improve the quality of life ”, celebrated Ramón.
“The project benefits many people from Cordoba, there are areas that we have marked that were not covered, so we will submit reports to Enargas so that they can be incorporated into the benefit in the future,” said Paulo Cassinerio, from Cordoba, of the block that responds to Governor Juan Schiaretti .
The initiative stipulates a 50% reduction for users from vulnerable sectors, such as retirees and pensioners, recipients of the Universal Child Allowance, electrodependents and workers with a gross salary less than or equal to four minimum wages. For the rest of the residential users, the discount is 30%.
“The discounts will be 30% for 2.6 million users and new users and 50% for some 400,000 who also today receive the social rate,” had reported the controller of Enargas, Federico Bernal.
In that sense, Bernal assured that the proposal “Does not require contributions from the national Treasury” and that the regime will be financed “with a surcharge on the price of natural gas applicable to the volume sold in the country that cannot exceed 7.5%,” Bernal explained.
The money to fund this project will come out surcharges on invoices, which in turn are fed by a percentage of the price (PIST). This amount (PIST) is from the “entry into the system.” It is the purely gas component that comes in the bills and is paid by the users.
Currently, 4.5% of what users pay – in bills – goes to this fund, but the expansion of subsidies requires that it increase to 5.2%.
After the dispute that had arisen between Kirchnerism and the Minister of Economy, Martín Guzmán, over the Energy official, Federico Basualdo, the presentation of the project was read as a new defiant attitude of Kirchnerism towards the minister.