POLITICS

Premier replaces former government’s commissions

Premier Ponta was attacked by the opposition after he decided to replace the former government’s commissions, committees and inter-ministerial working groups with new ones. The government announced yesterday that the Head of Government decided to set up an inter-ministerial committee for combating corruption, cross-border organized crime and serious forms of economic and financial criminality, an inter-ministerial committee for hiking the rate of absorption of European funds, an inter-ministerial committee on public order and citizen safety, as well as an inter-ministerial committee on energy policies. At the same time, the Head of Government replaced the leaderships of several state institutions. Thus, the head of the Customs Authority, Viorel Comanita was replaced by Dorel Fronea. Ponta also revoked Doina Parcalabu from the helm of the National Pensions House.Matei Mircea Leontin is no longer President of the National Regulation Authority for Community Services of Public Utilities, Abos Gabriel and Marian Proorocu are no longer President and Vice-President of the National Environment Protection Agency, Gheorghe Popescu and Lorincz Csilla are no longer President and Vice President of the Environment Fund Administration, Rodica Mioara Toth and Balla Tullia Imola are no longer Vice Presidents of the National Consumer Protection Authority.Doru Ciocan (PSD) has been appointed President of the National Regulation Authority for Community Services of Public Utilities, while Gheorghe Papuc was appointed temporary leader of the Environment Fund Administration. Mihail Falca (PSD) was appointed President of the National Environment Protection Agency, an office he previously held in 2009. Bogdan Cristian Nica was appointed President, while Marius Alexandru Dunca and Marcel Bogdan Pandelica were appointed Vice Presidents of the National Consumer Protection Authority. Mihai Turcanu was appointed President of the National Sanitary-Veterinary Authority. Dan Lucian Vladescu was appointed President of the National Authority for the Regulation and Supervision of Public Procurements, while Rodin Traicu was appointed secretary of state within the Economy Ministry.
Protocol expenditures cut

The new government also cut protocol expenditures, forbidding public institutions, autonomous administrations, and national companies from contracting juridical consultancy and assistance services if they already have their own juridical personnel and forcing their leaderships to cut personnel and travel expenditures by 30 per cent. According to a draft emergency ordinance, exceptions from this rule can only be possible with the agreement of the government, and of local and county councils. In what concerns trips abroad, the delegations can only consist of two persons at most. At the same time, the government will extend by one year, until May 15, 2013, the period in which the issuance of payment titles due to damages paid for nationalized buildings is suspended, arguing that the resumption of the procedure calls for RON 1.5 bln, a sum that would affect the deficit.
Better news for health system

On the other hand, the new government decided to unblock 500 job openings in the health system, 200 of them in two hospitals in Iasi. The measure comes in support of understaffed public hospitals, Health Minister Vasile Cepoi stated in a communiqué quoted by Mediafax. In what concerns the education system, the government approved 1.6 million seats in the pre-tertiary and tertiary education systems for the 2012-2013 school and university year, down from last year’s 1.7 million seats.

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