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At today’s sitting, the Riigikogu did not pass unamended the Act on Amendments to the Rescue Act and the Weapons Act, which the President of the Republic had refused to proclaim.

88 members of the Riigikogu voted against passing the Act unamended again.

Consequently, the Riigikogu will continue proceeding the Bill. The deadline for motions to amend is 4 June. Possible amendments are subject to further debate.  

The amendments proposed to the Act on Amendments to the Rescue Act and the Weapons Act (128 SE), which the President of the Republic refused to proclaim, are linked to the launch of the crisis information service, involvement of volunteer rescuers, tasks of the Rescue Board, and specification of the Weapons Act.

The provisions of the Act recognise the role of volunteer rescuers. The social guarantees in place for volunteer rescuers involved in rescue work are also extended to volunteer rescuers involved in prevention work. In addition, the five-year validity period of the medical certificate of rescuer is eliminated. In the future, family physicians are able to determine the validity period on the basis of the person’s health indicators.

The amendment creates a legal basis for the Rescue Board to process the causes of fires, and legal clarity about the content and activities of prevention work. In addition, it establishes the requirements for marking locations for blasting explosives during explosive ordnance disposal, and ensures the supply of food and drinking water to all people engaged in rescue work.

The Bill also introduces specifications into the Weapons Act and grants the right to carry and use firearms for self-defence to explosive ordnance disposal specialists of the Explosive Ordnance Disposal Centre of the Rescue Board.

The classification of weapons is also specified. The data on the weapons belonging to weapons collections of museums does not need to be entered in the Register of Service and Civilian Weapons. The requirement that a person may acquire, own or possess a sporting firearm only if they are a member of a shooting sports club is restored.

The Act increases the tasks of the Emergency Response Centre, which consist in processing assistance and information notifications by providing crisis information service. The Emergency Response Centre may involve volunteers in the provision of crisis information service.

During the debate, Toomas Kivimägi (Reform Party), Signe Riisalo (Reform Party), and Jevgeni Ossinovski (Social Democratic Party) took the floor.

One Bill passed the second reading in the Riigikogu

Bill on Amendments to the Government of the Republic Act and Other Acts (formation of the Education and Youth Board, renaming of the Language Inspectorate as the Language Board) (163 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Bill concerns establishing an Education and Youth Board in the area of government of the Ministry of Education and Research, and the Language Inspectorate would be renamed the Language Board.

The Bill provides the establishment of the Education and Youth Board in the area of government of the Ministry of Education and Research. It would be formed on the basis of the services of the Foundation Innove, Archimedes Foundation, Information Technology Foundation for Education, and Estonian Youth Work Centre, a state authority governed by the Ministry of Education and Research. As a result, the activities that are of implementational nature and are not related to policy shaping in the Ministry of Education and Research will also be relocated to the new Board. The State Shared Service Centre will begin to perform the tasks of accounting, salary calculation and personnel records as well as those of the 2nd level intermediate body for structural assistance. According to the Bill, the Language Inspectorate, a government agency operating in the area of government of the Ministry of Education and Research, will be renamed the Language Board. The Language Board will continue to provide all the services currently provided by the Language Inspectorate. In addition, the language policy implementation activities in the Ministry of Education and Research and Archimedes Foundation will be transferred to the Language Board.

During the debate, Jevgeni Ossinovski (Social Democratic Party) and Katri Raik (Social Democratic Party) took the floor on behalf of their faction to propose suspending the proceeding of the Bill. 8 members of the Riigikogu were in favour of the motion and 56 were against it. The motion was not supported and the second reading of the Bill was concluded.

Verbatim record of the sitting (in Estonian).

Video recording of the sitting can be viewed later on the Riigikogu YouTube channel.

(Please note that that the recording will by uploaded with a delay).

Riigikogu Press Service
Epp-Mare Kukemelk
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Questions: [email protected]