The Constitutional Court of Romania (CCR) rejected on Wednesday the notification of President Klaus Iohannis regarding the state budget Law on 2019, establishing that the normative act is constitutional, officials of the CCR told Agerpres.
The quoted source mentioned that the decision was unanimous.
On 22 February, the head of state filed with the CCR a constitutionality challenge regarding the state budget Law on 2019.
In the document sent to the CCR, the President showed, among others, that the Budget Law was adopted with the violation of the role and duties of the Fiscal Council, which was to issue an opinion regarding all the amendments agreed during the parliamentary debates.
Klaus Iohannis said that the Fiscal Council’s duty to issue an opinion regarding the conformity declaration signed by the Prime Minister and the Minister of Public Finance wasn’t observed either.
He also invoked the adoption of this law with the breech of the principles and regulations regarding the fiscal-budget responsibility.
According to President Iohannis, in the legislative journey of the State Budget Law on 2019 there is no declaration of responsibility of the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister, as the legislation stipulates.
The President mentioned that the normative act was adopted with the violation of the provisions in the Fundamental Law, according to which “as a result of the accession, the provisions of the constituent treaties of the European Union, as well as the other mandatory community regulations shall take precedence over the opposite provisions of the national laws, in compliance with the provisions of the accession act..”
The head of state also argued that the report on the 2019 macroeconomic situation and its projection for 2020-2022 was lodged by the Government according to its legal obligation, but it is based on a situation that ignores the developments at the level of global and European economy.
PSD after CCR rejects President’s notification about budget: Iohannis must apologise to children for postponing the hiking of child benefits and to local communities for the pointless delaying of investments!
The Social Democratic Party (PSD) considers that President Klaus Iohannis must apologise to children for postponing the hiking of benefits and to local communities for the useless delaying of investments, after the Constitutional Court rejected his notification regarding the 2019 budget.
“IOHANNIS MUST APOLOGISE to children for postponing the hiking of benefits and to local communities for the pointless delaying of investments! The Constitutional Court’s decision, which rejects the President’s complaint against the state budget, shows that Iohannis’s sole purpose was to block the PSD governance, just like we saw in the case of him blocking the nomination of ministers at Transport and Development,” the Social Democrats state.
They claim that the President’s gesture was “only an electoral manoeuvre through which Iohannis wanted to prevent PSD from accomplishing good things for citizens: investments in local development, investments in healthcare, pension and salary hikes or the hiking of child benefits.”
“PSD will not give up! We will continue to carry out the governance programme voted by citizens!”, PSD assures.
PSD leader Liviu Dragnea reacted on Wednesday, at the Palace of Parliament, after the Constitutional Court rejected Klaus Iohannis’s notification regarding the 2019 Budget Law but admitted his objection regarding the capping of certain indicators specified in the fiscal-budgetary framework for 2019.
“Child benefits will be hiked the moment Klaus Iohannis promulgates the budget law. The Government will immediately adopt a GEO hiking the child benefits. (…) For the time being, we do not have the Court’s substantiation. The moment the CCR substantiation regarding the law concerning the caps appears, we will adopt it in urgent procedure. Then we will wait and see what Klaus Iohannis does with the budget, because he might send it back to Parliament. Maybe he is angered by certain chapters. We are ready. He cannot promulgate the budget until the CCR substantiation appears,” Liviu Dragnea said at the Palace of Parliament.
President Iohannis: I will send back to Parliament for correction and improvement 2019 Budget Law
President Klaus Iohannis on Wednesday announced that he will be sending back to Parliament the 2019 State Budget Law for reexamination.
“I will send back to Parliament for correction and improvement the 2019 State Budget Law.
The message is simple: make a healthy budget for Romania! Parliament has the opportunity, but first of all, the responsibility to make the necessary corrections quickly so that the budget is really one for the development of Romania,” Iohannis stated at the Cotroceni Presidential Palace.
He did not wish to comment on the Constitutional Court’s decision on the State Budget Law, but he underlined that the 2019 budget was based on false figures and named it again a budget of “the national shame.”
“Beyond the constitutional aspects, the budget remains one based on false figures, on money that the Government does not actually have, wrongly drawn up against all the major objectives of the Romanians. In short, it remains the budget of the national shame. The weakest Government in post-December 1989 history, a PSD Government of imposture and incompetence, has drawn up a budget to suit it. The budget for 2019 is built on a fantasy scenario, with no guarantees as regards its implementation, as confirmed by the European institutions and other international institutions. It is a budget that questions the observance of international treaties to which Romania is a member, but, unfortunately, also the legislation in the field,” said Iohannis.
Iohannis also argued that the budget presented by PSD and voted by the PSD majority was designed to “serve primarily the political interests of a small group”.
“PSD pursues an agenda that has nothing to do with the economy, neither with the Romanians nor with the real development of the country,” said Iohannis.
He once again criticized the fact that the budget provides for an “enormous” increase in the amounts allocated to the parties, with the highest amount to go to PSD.
“We are cynically told by PSD that there is no money to increase children’s allowances on time,” added Klaus Iohannis.
The president also criticized the budget allocated to investment.
“We see how PSD leaders and propaganda obsessively repeat that this budget is one of the investments and that the main beneficiaries are the local communities, but in reality the PSD budget provides for a significant reduction in investment expenditures in local budgets. It provides for a sum of 1.2pct. It is the lowest value of the GDP share in the last ten years, and the investments announced for 2019 are by 1 billion [lei] smaller than those of 2018. This is the large investment budget that cuts 1 billion, but I am asking: who stopped PSD from making major investments as early as two years ago when it rose to power? Why is it that since 2016 the whitening of PSD leaders’ files continues to be the zero priority for them instead of building motorways and hospitals?” said Iohannis.
He reiterated that PSD governing has failed. “If PSD is not able to govern for the citizen, then it should leave power and leave it to others who can do it. PSD is the only guilty for all these budget delays,” said Klaus Iohannis.
“Government desperate to raise money”
He went on saying that the government is desperate to raise money and is therefore inventing measures that defy economic logic and common sense, citing in this regard the “greed tax” emergency ordinance and the Social Democratic Party’s bill regarding the repatriation of Romania’s gold reserve.
“The government is desperate to raise money and invents measures that defy not only economic logic, but also common sense. The emergence overnight of initiatives such as the ‘greed tax’ ordinance or, more recently, PSD’s desperate plans to lay hands on Romania’s gold reserve show that not even PSD trusts that their budget can be accomplished and therefore they come up with fresh, extreme solutions to get money,” Iohannis said in a statement at the Cotroceni Presidential Palace.
The President argued that the citizens and the private milieu will foot the bill for the economic “disaster” dished out by PSD.
“Rising prices, extra taxes and dues – this is PSD’s generous offer. PSD’s proclaiming on all channels that others are to blame is to no avail. Others are always to blame. No, it’s not. The main to blame for Romania’s stifled development is PSD. The effects of this disastrous governing must be limited and I will not hesitate to challenge any measure that affects the citizens, the proper functioning of the state and the market economy,” said Klaus Iohannis.
PSD reacts: Iohannis is lying again. The first president in Romania and maybe in the world who blocked the budget
On Wednesday, in a Facebook posting, the Social Democrats accused President Klaus Iohannis of lying once again when stating that the PSD budget is the worst, reminding him that Ciolos’s 2016 budget featured cuts in the healthcare budget (by 16 billion lei) and the education budget (by 10 billion lei).
“Iohannis is lying again: He says the budget proposed by the PSD is the worst. But Iohannis approved Ciolos’s 2016 budget, which stipulated a 16 billion lei cut for Healthcare and a 10 billion lei cut for Education. He says that in 2019 local communities have 1 billion less. In fact, local authorities have received an extra 4.6 billion. So, it’s in the green, not in the red, Mr Iohannis!”, the Social Democrats wrote on PSD’s Facebook page.
Referring to President Iohannis’s reproach regarding the hiking of the sums allocated to political parties, the Social Democrats claim that neither the PNL nor the USR have come to give the surplus back to the state budget.
“He says too much money has been handed to the parties, but neither Iohannis’s PNL nor Ciolos’s USR have come to give the surplus back to the state budget! And he does not say that his PNL demanded in Parliament, in 2018, the hiking of the parties’ budgets. He says less has been allocated to investments. But, in fact, the 2019 budget features an extra 15 billion for investments. The budget blocked by Iohannis stipulates the highest allocations for Healthcare in Romania’s history,” the mentioned source points out.
“The truth however is but one: children did not receive their hiked benefits on March 1st, and local communities were not able to start the investments because Iohannis challenged the budget, for naught, at the Constitutional Court. The first president in the history of Romania and probably of the world who blocked his own country’s budget!”, the Social Democrats concluded.
Turcan: CCR has confirmed President Iohannis couldn’t have promulgated budget law since framework law on the adoption of the budget law is unconstitutional
National Liberal Party (PNL) First Vice President Raluca Turcan stated on Wednesday that the PSD-ALDE alliance is the only culprit for the fact that Romania currently does not have a budget, because the Constitutional Court has confirmed that President Iohannis could not have promulgated the budget law since the framework law on adopting the budget law is unconstitutional.
“There is only one conclusion. The only culprit for the fact that Romania currently does not have a budget is the PSD-ALDE alliance, because the CCR has confirmed today that President Iohannis could not promulgate the budget law, since the framework law on adopting the budget law is unconstitutional. So, it has been proven both that the PNL was right when it said that the whole debate on the budget starts off from an unconstitutional framework, and that it was impossible for the President to promulgate a bad budget – against Romanians – that also had an unconstitutional framework,” Turcan stated.
The PNL First Vice President said she would like the budget to be improvable.
“I believe public administrations are waiting for a better form of the budget, which would solve their desire to make investments, to have a better budget for education, healthcare, infrastructure and, last but no least, for child benefits, because this budget in fact is the one that regulates the general framework through which these benefits can be hiked, not the dastardly emergency ordinance as issued by Mrs Dancila, through which she says that if the budget is not adopted the benefits cannot be paid, which is a lie,” Raluca Turcan emphasised.
Viorel Catarama, about Iohannis: Challenging the Budget Law to the Constitutional Court is an abuse
Viorel Catarama stated on Wednesday for MEDIAFAX that the head of state, Klaus Iohannis, has breached the law, and challenging the Budget Law to CCR is an abuse. The Chairman of the Liberal Right party added that Iohannis cannot ask someone to observe the law, while he breaches it himself.
“The Liberal Right firmly condemns the breach of the law by President Klaus Iohannis. In fact, challenging the Budget Law to the Constitutional Court is an abuse of substantive and procedural law (sanctioned as is by both Art.15 of the Civil Code and Art.12 of the Civil Procedure Code), since it is obvious that this remedy could be exclusively used in order to submit notifications on breaches of the Constitution” Viorel Catarama stated on Wednesday for MEDIAFAX.
He also stressed that the budget promoted by PSD-ALDE is antinational and destroys the private sector, but those who claim that the law must be observed should also observe it.
“It’s true, the budget promoted and adopted by the socialists grouped in PSD and ALDE is antinational, with an obvious intention to destroy the private sector and exports and obviously dedicated to the political clientele, being buried in huge expenses for social protection and undeserved benefits for the budgetary aristocracy, but people and political forces claiming that the law must be observed should be the first ones to observe it! One cannot ask someone to observe the law while breaching it knowingly, only for electoral reasons”, Catarama concluded.