President Klaus Iohannis, who attended on Monday a meeting organised by the Association of Romanian Towns, blamed the delays in the drafting of the budget bill by the Government on account of the desire to not allocate money for investments.
“They tried to lay the blame on me, because they delayed the budget. I delayed it two days. It took me one day to decide to send it to the Court and it took me one day to write the paper and I sent it back to Parliament. The rest: three months [spent] at the Government, plus, probably, another two or three weeks at the Court and Parliament. All in all, I honestly expected the mayors to explain a little bit the ruling people why this is not good. But, perhaps this will come up next. After all, a lot of people asked me why the Government delayed the budget. I have one single response and I tell you as a former mayor, because, after all, I know how the agenda works: they don’t want to give money to investments. Because, this way, where we are now with the budget, it is approved in March, and by the time the breakdown is made, it will be April. Until it reaches the county, it will be May. By the time it reaches you, it will be the beginning of June. What investments do you start at mid-year? It is not worth it to get started, because you reach 2020 with the procedure. That is the trivial explanation for why the Government has delayed the budget,” Iohannis said within the debate called “The future of Romanian towns under the local development European concept.”
The President also underscored the importance of local autonomy and the observance of the principle of subsidiarity for local authorities. He added that those who were “very vocal” about decentralization a few years ago and who currently have “the bread and the knife” have “locked them in the closet.”
Iohannis also argued that the Government currently overrides “with ease the public administration’s opinion” when deciding to adopt various ordinances.