Lawmakers approve 2013 national budget in first-round debate
Costa Rica’s Legislative Assembly approved in a first round of debate the ₡6.4 trillion ($12.8 billion) national budget bill in a 29-15 vote.
Fifty-seven percent of the budget will be financed by taxes and regular income, while 43 percent will be paid with debt.
Compared to this year, the 2013 budget is 2.6 percent bigger.
The vote came a few hours after the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court, or Sala IV, ruled unanimously that the earmarking of ₡3.6 billion ($7.2 million) for municipalities is unconstitutional because “it did not detail the specific destination of funds as required by law.”
Those funds will be frozen while the Finance Ministry corrects the error in the next national budget revision.
Lawmakers from the Citizen Action Party, Libertarian Movement Party and Broad Front Party had asked to adjust the budget after the Sala IV’s ruling, but the vote was held shortly after 7 p.m.
A second round of debate will be held on Thursday.
You may be interested
Costa Rica the latest Latin American country facing corruption scandalDavid GOLDBERG / AFP - June 16, 2021
A large corruption investigation in Costa Rica, involving a presidential adviser and executives of construction firms, places the country onto…
Exacerbated by pandemic, Costa Ricans face long hospital wait timesAlejandro Zúñiga - June 16, 2021
The waiting time for a non-emergency surgery at Costa Rica's public hospitals has reached more than 520 days, up considerably…