With the advance of vaccination and the reduction of cases and deaths caused by covid-19 in the country, the expectation is that, finally, on-site classes can be resumed at federal universities next year. What could be good news, however, reveals an announced collapse.
The 2022 budget bill (PLOA) sent to Congress by the federal government did not replace the budget losses of universities over the past few years. As a result, resources are still insufficient to guarantee the maintenance of activities, which can make it difficult to return in person or even result in the stoppage of institutions due to lack of funds for expenses such as energy, cleaning and water supply.
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“The federal universities only survived in 2020 and 2021 because there was a suspension of on-site activities, with the closing of units, generating an effective reduction in expenses with maintenance and services. energy will return to normal in a context of rising tariffs. It will be a year of high spending pressure,” says Marcus Vinicius David, dean of the Federal University of Juiz de Fora (UFJF) and president of the National Association of Directors of Federal Education Institutions Superior (Andifes).
To get an idea, according to data from Andifes, the discretionary budget of federal universities proposed in PLOA 2022 is R$ 5.134 billion. This value is 15.3% lower than the BRL 6.061 billion in 2019. Since then, there have only been reductions: in 2020 the available resource was BRL 5.537 billion and this year it was BRL 4.512 billion, one of the the lowest levels of the last decade.
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“Despite having improved compared to this year, the budget for next year is still R$ 400 million less than 2020 and R$ 1 billion less than 2019. I’m talking about nominal values without inflation correction. inflation is something absolutely worrying, especially with this general increase in prices, with a strong impact on our accounts”, highlights the president of Andifes.
In August, driven by fuel, inflation rose 0.87%, the highest inflation for the month since 2000, according to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE). With this, the indicator accumulates highs of 5.67% in the year and 9.68% in the last 12 months, the highest accumulated since February 2016, when the index reached 10.36%. In addition, the financial market projects inflation in 2021 of at least 8%.
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For the University of Brasília (UnB), for example, the federal government did not foresee a single cent of investment, an essential resource for infrastructure works, acquisition of laboratory and computer equipment, in addition to bibliographic material and database.
In terms of discretionary expenses, if there is no supplementation, UnB will have R$ 145.7 in 2022, an increase of 7.2% compared to this year, a value lower than the projected inflation. This amount represents only the transfer from the National Treasury. In the case of UnB, it still has another R$ 97 million in its own revenues.
“The continuous reduction of resources, associated with blockages and contingencies, greatly impairs the execution of the institution’s budget planning, which has brought difficulties and challenges that have never been experienced before. Maintenance activities, which can be highlighted as part of the challenges, can be highlighted. undergo contractually stipulated readjustments, such as electricity and outsourced services – surveillance and cleaning, for example, essential to the institution’s operation, in addition to supporting students in a situation of socioeconomic vulnerability,” informed the UnB in a note sent to Brasil de Fato .
Fight in Congress
When sought, the Ministry of Education (MEC) declined to comment on the budget bill because it is under discussion in Parliament.
This week, the president of Andifes and the rectors of three other federal universities met with Senator Rose de Freitas (MDB-ES), president of the Mixed Budget Commission (CMO) of the Congress to ask for a budget recomposition for the federal universities.
The goal is for next year’s discretionary budget to be equivalent to that of 2019 adjusted for inflation. In this case, it would go from the current R$ 5.134 billion to R$ 6.922 billion.
“We are already coming five to six straight years of budget reduction in universities. Our capacity to adapt is all exhausted. The problem with the austerity fiscal policy for many years is that it compromises the functioning of public policies. We are hopeful that the Congress reverses this trend,” says Marcus Vinicius David, president of Andifes.
Source: Federal District BdF
Edition: Marcia Silva