Maneuver, many knots to solve: from building bonuses to pensions to citizenship income

The discussion on the next budget law starts. At the center of the debate are above all the Superbonus and other building bonuses, pensions, citizenship income and tax cuts. Tensions especially on how to exceed 100: the Lega does not like the solution proposed in the CDM and even the unions are asking for more

The next maneuver is being defined and there are several issues to be resolved, amidst controversies and negotiations between the parties. At the center of the discussion are above all the Superbonus and other building bonuses, pensions, citizenship income and tax cuts. The debate opened after the sending to the EU – and for information to the Parliament – of the Draft Budgetary Document (Dpb), which revealed the outlines of a budget law worth at least 23 billion (there are 23.4 billion in deficit): in addition to the 8 billion for the tax authorities, among the most conspicuous items there are 4.1 billion that go to health care, of which 2 for the purchase of vaccines and medicines for Covid, and 2 billion against the expensive bills. The room for maneuver is still enormous and there is no shortage of requests from parties and social partners.

The knots

Prime Minister Mario Draghi, in Parliament for an information on the EU Council, yesterday was overwhelmed with requests to expand the Superbonus to 110%. Matteo Salvini, on behalf of the center-right, asked for more funds to cut taxes, at the expense of income. Income should not be “debased”, the founder of M5S Beppe Grillo warned instead. But the most difficult negotiations, even with the social partners, will probably be those on the mechanism that will replace the 100 quota for pensions and on the reform of social safety nets. The Council of Ministers on the Budget Law should be convened for next week and before that, there will probably be new meetings with the majority heads of delegation and with the trade unions.

How to overcome 100

One of the thorniest issues, therefore, is how to exceed 100 – the early retirement mechanism that the OECD has also rejected because it is unsustainable – ensuring that the “transition to the ordinary regime is gradual and balanced”. The proposal on the table is “quota 102” in 2022 and “quota 104” in 2023. But a system articulated over several years is also not excluded. The League, which has recorded its dissent in the CDM, aims to obtain the widest possible mechanism, protecting certain categories such as precocious workers and SMEs. The Democratic Party, with the minister Andrea Orlando, asks to protect the “usuranti” and women (so far the woman option has also been skipped, while the social Ape seems to be confirmed). The government does not close to mechanisms other than the one identified, on one condition: that they are sustainable. In the Dpb 600 million are allocated in deficit for next year, but the unions are asking for more: an organic reform. “Quota 102 is a bit of a mockery: we have proposed a real reform of the system and this is not,” said Maurizio Landini of the CGIL. For the CISL the mechanism identified is “unacceptable”, for the UIL “it is a joke”.

The building bonuses

Meanwhile, while waiting to open the table on tax cuts – to understand how to cut the tax wedge, whether to affect income tax or contributions, whether to touch IRAP (the government would have strong doubts) -, the parties are focusing on building bonuses. Minister Pd Dario Franceschini has spoken out against the elimination of the 90% incentive to redo the facades. The M5S is defending “its” Superbonus at 110%. The measure – although not mentioned in the Dpb – seems destined to be confirmed until 2023, but only for condominiums. Minister Stefano Patuanelli is insisting that it be extended to at least the whole of 2022 also to villas. “The government does more,” said Giuseppe Conte. The small municipalities also insist, with Antonio Decaro. And if the games still seem open, there is certainly that the percentage of the refund should gradually decrease: according to the hypotheses, to 70% in 2024 and to 65% in 2025.

Citizenship income, social safety nets, cashback

Another issue being discussed is citizenship income: more stringent controls and the introduction of a “decalage” mechanism should arrive after the rejection of the second job offer (but the M5S asks that the amount decreases only by 1 %). The pentastellati, with Grillo, are pushing not to downsize the measure, the center-right will try to reduce resources (8.8 billion of which 800 million additional). As for the reform of social safety nets, 3 billion are expected for now: Orlando has already assured that there will be sufficient resources to cover the cig for everyone. The issue – raised by small businesses and the Lega – is how to reduce the cost for small entrepreneurs and how to intersect the reform with Naspi. There is still no trace of the cashback: Conte is waiting to understand if and how his measure will be renewed, for now suspended. While there will be six more months for incentives for banking aggregations, with the DTAs of the “MPS standard”.