The Reasons Behind The Turbulent Landing Of Omar Perotti In Santa Fe

Perotti took strong measures in the first weeks Source: Archive

The governor attributes to the enormous deficit left by socialism the decision to stagger wages; face daily protests and marches

ROSARIO.- "Scorched earth" is the one used by the governor
Omar Perotti to describe the statement of accounts of
Santa Fe, where socialism left a deficit of more than $ 15,000 million, after 12 years of management, with an oversized structure of the State that, according to the new president, forced him to reduce political personnel expenses by 40%. Perotti failed to relax for a moment since he took office, on December 11. The apothegm of the analog era that established the period of 100 days to demand results from a new management seems to have shortened in the first weeks, after a conflictive and extensive transition of more than six months.


The governor faced a protest of a sector of teachers and state for the delay in the first salary of the new administration and a violent demonstration in Rafaela, city where Perotti was 12 years mayor,
for security claims, after the death of a young man who was chasing two motochorros, who ended up with escraches in the house of the governor, the prosecution and the municipality.

The argument that puts the government of Santa Fe on the table is that they found an almost molten province, with six month arrears in payments to suppliers, debts and payment records that are not registered, and an extra difficulty: there was no transition in Santa Fe with the previous management, by Miguel Lifschitz, so they just began to see the real panorama of the Santa Fe state when they entered the Government House. On the other hand, from socialism they argue the opposite, as if it were the game of opposites, in a political scenario much more cracked than at the national level. "Perotti did not start to govern because he did not finish putting together his government teams. We see a lot of improvisation and not a single announcement," said socialist deputy Joaquin Blanco. "They are playing to expand the crack in Santa Fe between socialism and Peronism," interpreted the head of the Juntos block for Change Julian Galdeano.

With a sober, low-profile media style – he assigned an official spokesperson to spread the government's measures -, Perotti contrasts in his first steps as governor with his predecessor, who had a frantic public agenda. The former national senator intends to show austerity in these times of emergency and replies – in dialogue with
THE NATION- the statements of President Alberto Fernández: "If adjusting is ordering public accounts, we are making an adjustment." Perottista management preferred to promote an unpopular measure, such as the delay in the payment of salaries, to resort to overdraft funds with rates above 70%. "What socialism spent using funds in the open could serve a month and a half of food through the food card. A day of discovery means $ 25 million," he calculated.

"The debt of Santa Fe is about $ 25,000 million; the red of the retirement fund, about $ 10,000 million, and the deficit, about $ 15,000 million. We are facing this devastating panorama. We are in a severe crisis of public accounts that he left socialism, who does not want to assume that he left this province in an emergency, "said Perotti.

The new government faced two hard setbacks in the Legislature, where power is distributed. Peronism has a majority in the Senate and socialism, in Deputies. Therefore, the governor interpreted that "the opposition that breaks the institutional guidelines of letting a new government begin its management with basic tools such as a budget."

First, a sector of the PJ bloc managed to approve on November 21 the budget that Lifschitz had sent before leaving the government house. It was a surprise that the Peronism bench was divided and 6 of the 11 legislators, led by the ex-mayor of the San Lorenzo PJ Armando Traferri, approved the project of socialism, which had "drawn" -according to the vision of the new administration- The main variables, among them, were a surplus in public accounts, because they had calculated how there are debts due to co-participation that must be collected.

In the Chamber of Deputies, and after intense negotiations, Peronism loyal to Perotti managed to re-impact the budget at some points, in which a deficit of $ 8,000 million was recognized and authorized the Executive to borrow $ 12,000 million. "It was the two points that were included," said the governor.

The second legislative round left another sinsabor to the Peronist administration. The Legislature approved the tax increase, with increases in gross income taxes for cereals and banks that went from paying 0.5 to 2%, among other points. He did so after canceling the tax consensus law to which Santa Fe had joined in February 2018.

But the other package, which included eight emergency projects, was not even turned to commissions to be analyzed in February, but was rejected outright during the extraordinary period. Perotti was looking for something difficult to achieve, that the legislators of socialism and radicals who participated in the government of the Progressive Front, who are a majority, recognized that Lifschitz's management ended in a situation such that the emergency in the areas of security, social should be declared , food, health and contracting of the state, among others.

The government commissioned the General Audit of the Nation (AGN) a total review of the public accounts. The results will be at the end of February, and the governor does not rule out going to justice if they detect irregularities, as suspected. The other issue that the new government occupies in these early days is the review of the files for hiring services and personnel. "Everything is behind to levels never imagined, for example, debts in public works exceed 100 million dollars," said the governor.