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Brazil: Brazilian President Signs Acts Addressing Bureaucracy, Corruption, and Drug Policy

(Apr. 23, 2019) On April 11, 2019, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro signed 18 acts, including measures relating to corruption, modernization, bureaucracy, drug policy, and literacy policy. (Assinados 18 Atos para Modernizar e Desburocratizar o País, NOTÍCIAS, GOVERNO DO BRASIL (Apr. 12, 2019).)

Five of the most significant of the acts signed by Bolsonaro are as follows:

  • Decree No. 9,755 creates the Interministerial Committee to Combat Corruption to advise the President on the formulation, implementation, and evaluation of public policies aimed at combating corruption in the federal public administration. (Decreto No. 9.755, de 11 de Abril de 2019, art. 1, Presidency of the Republic website.)
  • Decree No. 9,757 revokes 250 normative decrees that are either old, ineffective, or no longer valid. (Assinados 18 Atos para Modernizar e Desburocratizar o País, supra; Decreto No. 9.757, de 11 de Abril de 2019, Presidency of the Republic website.)
  • Decree No. 9,761 approves a new National Policy on Drugs (Política Nacional sobre Drogas) and provides that the federal public administration must, in their planning and actions, consider the assumptions, general definitions, and directives set forth in the new National Policy, which is set forth in the Annex to the Decree. (Assinados 18 Atos para Modernizar e Desburocratizar o País, supra; Decreto No. 9.761, de 11 de Abril de 2019, Presidency of the Republic website.)
  • Decree No. 9,765 creates the National Literacy Policy (Política Nacional de Alfabetização) through which the Union, in collaboration with the states, the Federal District, and the municipalities, is to implement programs and actions aimed at promoting literacy. The goal of the policy is to improve the quality of literacy in the national territory and fight total and functional illiteracy within basic education as well as nonformal education. (Decreto No. 9.765, de 11 de Abril de 2019, art. 1, Presidency of the Republic website.)

Bolsonaro also sent to the Brazilian Congress several legislative drafts, including one for a supplementary law on the autonomy of the Central Bank of Brazil (the equivalent of the US Federal Reserve) that would ensure that the Central Bank continues to play its role independently, robustly, and with legal certainty. Another draft proposes standardizing the procedure public and private institutions use for appointing their directors, with the expectation that that the managers and administrators of public banks, such as Banco do Brasil and Caixa Econômica, would require approval by the Central Bank in accordance with technical criteria to be established by the National Monetary Council. The final draft proposes the regulation of home schooling, along with the minimum requirements that parents or legal guardians must fulfill, such as the registration with the Ministry of Education and the possibility of evaluation. The draft meets the wishes of those in the society that have called for home schooling regulation. (Assinados 18 Atos para Modernizar e Desburocratizar o País, supra.)