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On the motion of the Legal Affairs Committee, the first reading of the Bill on Amendments to the Alimony Act, the State Legal Aid Act and the Code of Civil Procedure (917 SE), initiated by the Government, was concluded. The purpose of the Bill is to bring Estonian national law into conformity with the Council of the EU Regulation on jurisdiction, applicable law, recognition and enforcement of decisions and cooperation in matters relating to maintenance obligations. The purpose of the Regulation is to determine the law applicable to maintenance obligations in the case when a dispute is connected with several states and therefore the question arises under which state’s law to settle the dispute. It also determines with which state’s court the action should be filed in such case and how a decision given in a Member state can be enforced in other Member States. The Bill was sent to the second reading.

On the motion of the Cultural Affairs Committee, the first reading of the National Library Bill (863 SE), initiated by the same Committee, was concluded. The new National Library Bill was prepared with the aim of specifying and improving the provisions concerning the functions, the composition of the Supervisory Board, the organisation of the work, the responsibility and the Director General of the National Library, and updating the structure of the Act. The National Library of Estonia Act which is currently in force was passed in March 1998 and it has been amended for six times. The Bill was sent to the second reading.

 
On the motion of the Constitutional Committee, the first reading of the Bill on Amendments to the Population Register Act (737 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Kalev Kotkas, Aleksei Lotman, Tarmo Kõuts, Mark Soosaar, Imre Sooäär, Kalle Laanet and Karel Rüütli, was concluded. The Act is amended by adding and defining more precisely the concept of permanent resident. According to the Bill, a permanent resident is a person who lives and acts in the territory of the local government of his or her residence according to the population register throughout the year. The local government council will decide on the status of a permanent resident. The initiators maintain that the state must know where its citizens actually reside. In their opinion, this is necessary in order to plan activities in different spheres of life like health care, education, public transport, social welfare, defence service, waste management, fishing, hunting or repopulation of small islands. The Bill was sent to the second reading.
 
On the motion of the Constitutional Committee, the first reading of the Bill on Amendments to the Public and National Holidays Act (914 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Mart Nutt, Toivo Tootsen, Toomas Trapido, Maret Merisaar, Trivimi Velliste, Mart Jüssi, Peeter Tulviste, Urmas Klaas, Enn Eesmaa, Ivi Eenmaa, Marko Mihkelson and Mari-Ann Kelam, was concluded. According to the Bill, the Kindred Peoples’ Day will be celebrated as a national holiday on the third Saturday of October. The initiators stated that the aim of the Kindred Peoples’ Day is to increase awareness about Estonians’ belonging to the family of Finno-Ugric nations, to value our origins, our mother tongue and our cultural heritage. The Kindred Peoples’ Day would be a day celebrating the unique linguistic and cultural identity, the national indigenous culture of Estonia, as well as a day to think of other Finno-Ugric nations, to promote their languages and cultures and to speak about topical problems of kindred peoples. The Bill was sent to the second reading.
 
 
The Riigikogu Press Service
 
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