The Draft Resolution intended to set the principles for more efficient and human-centred governance, submitted by the Study Committee to Draw Up the Development Objectives for the State Reform, passed the first reading in the Riigikogu today.
The Draft Resolution of the Riigikogu “The Fundamentals of the State Reform and Good Administration” (777 OE), submitted by the Study Committee to Draw Up the Development Objectives for the State Reform, will establish the fundamentals of the state reform and good administration. According to it, the state reform and good administration mean improvement of the work of the government sector in such a way that, by focusing on what is important, problems are solved quickly, and unnecessary activities and excessive administrative burden are abandoned. This is based on manageable and efficient governance that supports general well-being and economic growth.
The implementation of the objectives is based on the principles for administration and governance that apply at the same time and in all sectors, as described in the Draft Resolution.
The Draft Resolution consists of seven items with the following subheadings: “Human-centredness”, “The Fundamental Principles of the Constitution Are Not Changed”, “Adaptable Estonia”, “Smaller Administrative Burden”, “Legal Clarity and Intelligibility”, “Efficient Governance” and “Clear Responsibility”.
During the debate, Arto Aas from the Reform Party Faction, Eiki Nestor from the Social Democratic Party Faction and Jüri Adams from the Free Party Faction took the floor.
A Bill passed the second reading in the Riigikogu:
The purpose of the Bill on Amendments to the Courts Act and Code of Criminal Procedure (776 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic, is to allow for additional remuneration of on-call time for judges.
The explanatory memorandum states that the aim of additional remuneration of on-call time is to ensure smooth administration of justice also outside of working hours in situations where provided for by law, taking into account that the judges’ salary system must be in accordance with the heightened occupational requirements and restrictions for judges and foster a lasting and high-quality service relationship.
The current regulation does not allow for payment of additional remuneration to a judge when the judge must perform urgent procedural acts provided for in the Codes concerning procedures, or be available for the performance thereof (i.e. be on call) on public holidays and weekends. The on-call time of a judge is not covered by the judge’s salary.
Two motions to amend the Bill were submitted during the second reading. Both of them were submitted by the Constitutional Committee. One motion to amend provides that, in the cases when a justice of the Supreme Court wishes to be released from office at their own request or due to age, the Supreme Court en banc, and not the Riigikogu, will release the justice of the Supreme Court from office. The other motion to amend will amend the provision concerning the entry into force of the Act.
Another Bill passed the first reading in the Riigikogu:
The Bill on Amendments to the Government of the Republic Act and Other Acts (merger of the Environmental Board and the Environmental Inspectorate) (789 SE), initiated by members of the Riigikogu Andres Metsoja, Raivo Aeg, Tarmo Kruusimäe, Helir-Valdor Seeder, Priit Sibul, Aivar Kokk, Sven Sester, Viktoria Ladõnskaja-Kubits, Maire Aunaste, Marko Pomerants, Mart Nutt, Valeri Korb, Jaanus Karilaid, Märt Sults, Inara Luigas and Tanel Talve, will make amendments to the Government of the Republic Act and 38 other Acts with the aim of merging the Environmental Board and the Environmental Inspectorate, two governmental authorities in the area of government of the Ministry of Environment.
The merger of the Environmental Board and the Environmental Inspectorate proceeds from a more general principle of the state reform which is reduction of duplication in state offices, reduction of the number of administrative agencies and improvement of the quality and availability of public services. The document “A State Tasks Analysis” also recommends the establishment of a joint agency in the environmental sector.
The aim of the merger of the Environmental Board and the Environmental Inspectorate is to enhance the implementation of the strategic tasks of the state in the environment sector, to use the existing resources more efficiently and effectively, and to offer high-quality public services and to also meet the expectations of society in a longer perspective.
The agency to be established will be performing all the current main functions of the two agencies. A Bill with the same title (No. 710 SE) was also in the legislative proceedings of the Riigikogu earlier, but it did not receive the support necessary to be adopted, that is, 51 votes in favour were needed. The same Bill was introduced again now.
At the beginning of today’s plenary sitting, the justice of the Supreme Court Velmar Brett took his oath of office.
Verbatim record of the sitting (in Estonian) http://stenogrammid.riigikogu.ee/en/201901291000.
Video recordings of the sittings of the Riigikogu can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/riigikogu (NB! The recording will be uploaded with a delay.)
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