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Presidency Minister Talks with Legislators

May 19, 2006

Rodrigo Arias, President Oscar Arias’ brother and spokesman, visited the Legislative Assembly this week to meet with lawmakers from opposition parties, including the Citizen Action Party (PAC), the Libertarian Movement, the National Union Party (PUN) and the Social Christian Unity Party (PUSC).

According to the daily La Nación, Arias, the Minister of the Presidency, listened to legislators’ concerns and presented Executive Branch priorities including reforming the Constitution to set aside 8%, up from the current 6%, of the gross domestic product (GDP) for education; ratifying $291 million in credits from three international financial institutions; and a reform that would set time frames for the assembly to approve or reject legislation in extraordinary sessions, when the legislative agenda is set by the Executive Branch.

In turn, legislators told Arias their own initiatives and priorities. PAC legislators expressed support for the educational reform, but opposition to reforming the regulations governing the assembly, La Nación reported.

PUN legislator José Manuel Echandi presented a proposal to allow Costa Ricans living abroad to vote (see separate story).

 

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