Costa Rica: Day 39
The interesting part of this congress is that it is the only chamber. They do not have a senate side. Also there are only 57 members of the congress. These 57 people are the most important in the government, even over the president. Because after the civil war in 1948 they took away all the presidents power. That is why it is so important that the current President Laura Chinchila veto’d a pay raise for the congress because she can’t technically does not have veto power. But she got around it because she was vetoing against her own political party not the congress as a whole. Another part of the congress system here is that in each of the commission meeting rooms and the full session room there are seating areas with bullet proof glass for the general public to come and hear what they are discussing and bang on the glass and pressure the congressman to make decisions. This picture shows where I saw bullet holes in the glass.
As we were leaving we saw protestors coming for the session that the congress was having at 3pm. The biggest project they are having right now was the tax increase. After the last president left office he spent every penny in the budget leaving Laura with nothing. In order to generate money she needs to collect taxes or else she will not be able to do anything for the next three years. This tax increas means taxing electric cars, classes enrolled at private schools and an additional 10% for restaurants on top of 13% tax and 10% for tips. Thats 33% worth of taxes for a dinning out experience.
- The Natural Travelista