POLITICS

Bills tabled by UDMR, green-lighted in Parliament ahead of no-confidence vote

On Monday, the Senate’s Administration Committee adopted a bill establishing March 15th as a holiday for the Hungarian community in Romania, employers being able to offer the day off, on demand, to employees who belong to the Hungarian community.

Senators adopted a favourable report on the bill, adding an amendment according to which employers can offer the day off, on demand, to employees who belong to the Hungarian community.

The Senate is the first House notified, the Lower Chamber having the final say in this case.

Bill tabled by UDMR goes through committees under urgent procedure

A bill tabled by UDMR MPs, which stipulates the hiking of the share allotted to each administrative-territorial unit from the income tax collected at the state budget, was adopted by the members of the Administration Committee on Monday, and will next enter the plenum.

The bill signed by UDMR MPs stipulates that “from the income tax collected at the state budget from each administrative-territorial unit over the past month, with the exception of pension income taxes, a share of 45 percent will be earmarked each month for the local budgets of communes, cities and municipalities on whose territory the taxpayers are carrying out their activity; one of 12 percent to the county’s local budget; one of 23 percent in a distinct account, opened at the county seat’s treasury, at the expense of the county general directorate for public finances, for the balancing of local budgets of communes, cities and municipalities, and of the county’s local budget.”

In defence of its legislative initiative, UDMR argues that it offers a higher degree of local autonomy and supports the proper functioning of local communities. The purpose of the law is to hike the share allocated to the local budgets from the income tax collected at the level of each administrative-territorial units, from 71.5 to 80 percent.

“In order to be able to offer an enhanced degree of local autonomy and to support the proper functioning of local communities, and for local authorities to be able to offer quality services, it’s essential for them to have adequate financial resources at their disposal. The income tax is one of the most important local revenue sources. Nevertheless, only a small part of the sums collected will be returned from Bucharest to the local public administration budget. During the elections campaign we promised we will demand in Parliament that local resources should remain, to the greatest extent possible, in the administration of local communities, and thus, that city halls should benefit from an enhanced degree of financial autonomy,” UDMR’s Senate whip Cseke Attila stated when tabling the bill.

 

Dragnea: We didn’t sell Transylvania out. UDMR bills are old

 

PSD President Liviu Dragnea (photo) stated on Monday, in Parliament, that the UDMR bills currently debated within the committees are older, “weren’t drafted overnight.” When asked whether PSD will receive something in return, such as support at the vote on the no-confidence motion, Dragnea said that the ruling power has a comfortable majority.

“Today I discussed [with UDMR leaders] about the current political situation. We talked by phone the other days. I understood I’ve sold Transylvania out. I didn’t sell Transylvania out. We discussed what we could do, regardless of what majority is concerned, for this not to happen before in Romania. These laws were not drafted overnight, their turn came. Party whips met the committees and they discussed separately. There are two Houses, I’m telling you what I took part in. We talked about March 15th, there are other national minorities that have a day of their own and the Hungarian community wanted this,” Liviu Dragnea said.

Asked whether PSD received something in return for endorsing and expediting the bills in Parliament, such as support at the vote on the no-confidence motion, the PSD leader pointed out that “[even] without UDMR’s votes, we have a comfortable majority to pass the motion. We’re in an atypical situation, when a handful of people are assuming a legitimacy they lack.”

 

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