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Bailout for Brazil’s Soccer Teams Vetoed by President Rousseff

Bailout for Brazil’s Soccer Teams Vetoed by President Rousseff

Posted by Juan Gavasa on January 20, 2015

Rousseff refused to sign the aid package into law last night because it didn’t include steps to ensure that the teams improve budget oversight and management, according to the veto published today in the nation’s official gazette. The law, which passed in Congress last month, would have reduced fines and interest rates on about 4 billion reais in back taxes and allowed the teams to repay the debt over 20 years.

A least 17 of the 20 teams in the nation’s top division struggled to pay player salaries last year, Bloomberg reported in December, citing a person with direct knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be identified because the issue was private. Five of the teams, including former FIFA world club champion Sao Paulo and Santos, where soccer star Pele spent the majority of his career, ended the season without major sponsors on their shirts.

“The government will immediately begin talks to find an alternative in the short term to modernize soccer in Brazil,” Rousseff wrote in the veto.

Brazil’s national team was eliminated in the World Cup semifinals last year in a 7-1 rout againstGermany. It was the worst loss by a World Cup host nation in history.

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