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The Riigikogu suspended the second reading of the Traffic Bill (475 SE), initiated by the Government. The Bill merges the Traffic Act which is currently in force and the “Traffic Code” established by a Government Regulation. According to the Constitution, this has to be regulated at the level of an Act. As an innovation, the requirement for drivers to carry a driving licence, the registration certificate and a motor third party liability insurance policy is eliminated and the police will have to check the existence thereof on the basis of registers. A child will have to be fastened with safety equipment as required on the back seat of a taxi which will bring along the additional requirement for taxi companies to procure safety equipment for children. Moped is defined as a motor vehicle which means that it will have to be registered according to the requirements. The part concerning suspension of the right to drive for driving under the influence of alcohol is differentiated. As an innovation, persons whose right to drive is suspended for longer than six months will have to pass the theory test; persons whose right to drive is suspended for longer than twelve months will have to pass both the theory test and the driving test.
 
The Riigikogu concluded the first reading of two Bills:
 
The purpose of the Bill on Amendments to the Defence Forces Service Act (671 SE), initiated by the National Defence Committee, is to determine on the basis of the Act restriction of the fundamental rights and freedoms of conscripts and to bring the duration of alternative service into conformity with the principles of the European Social Charter. According to the Bill, the maximum duration of alternative service is reduced to twelve months instead of the current eighteen months. The drafting of the Bill was necessitated by the Resolution of the President of the Republic by which the President refused to proclaim the Act on Amendments to the Defence Forces Service Act and Other Acts, passed by the Riigikogu on 21 October 2009. In the President’s opinion, the Act was in conflict with the Constitution as regarded respect for the human dignity and recognition of the rights of conscripts.
 
The Bill on Amendments to § 11 of the Fiscal Marking of Liquid Fuel Act (681 SE), initiated by the Estonian People’s Union Faction, provides the possibility of using agricultural machines, tractors and non-road mobile machinery also in road maintenance works in winter. This will apply to roads in the ownership of local governments, private roads and winter roads. The Bill would enter into force retroactively as of 1 January 2010.
 
The Riigikogu rejected five Bills at the first reading:
 
On the motion of the Finance Committee, the Bill on Amendments to the Alcohol, Tobacco, Fuel and Electricity Excise Duty Act and the Fiscal Marking of Liquid Fuel Act (680 SE), initiated by the Estonian Centre Party Faction, was rejected. The result of voting: 52 votes in favour, 34 votes against, 1 abstention.
 
On the motion of the Economic Affairs Committee, the Bill on Amendments to the State Assets Act (664 SE), initiated by the Estonian Centre Party Faction, was rejected. The result of voting: 44 votes in favour, 31 against.
 
On the motion of the Constitutional Committee, the Bill on Amendments to the Local Government Associations Act (688 SE), initiated by the Estonian Centre Party Faction, was rejected. The result of voting: 43 votes in favour, 36 against.
 
On the motion of the Cultural Affairs Committee, the Bill on Amendments to § 27 of the Pre-School Child Care Institutions Act (686 SE), initiated by the Social Democratic Party Faction, was rejected. The result of voting: 39 votes in favour, 34 against.
 
The Draft Resolution of the Riigikogu “Making a Proposal to the Government of the Republic” (704 OE), submitted by the Estonian People’s Union Faction, was not passed. The result of voting: 31 votes in favour, 46 against.
 
The sitting ended at 1.36 p.m.
 
The Riigikogu Press Service
 
 
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