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Emergency Ordinance: Ciolos Government makes room for the future government’s budget

de Adrian N Ionescu 19.12.2016

palatul-victoria-300x187The Government approved on Thursday an Emergency Ordinance to postpone some measures that would have entered into force on 01 January 2017 and had a significant budgetary impact for the deficit.

Some measures have been delayed only for two months (leaving the decision of their application to the future government) – such as the provisions from the Law on the unitary pay of state employees (because the consolidated budget would have otherwise increased by 49.1 billion lei – representing 6.08% of the GDP forecasted for 2017). Others refer to postponing the elimination of some taxes and surtaxes (such as taxes on energy) or even the 6% of GDP allocation to Education and 1% to Research.

They have been postponing some of these measures from one year to another for years.

“It remains for the future government to decide what happens next with them,” said Minister Anca Dragu.

In 2017, says the Ordinance, the remuneration of the state employees is maintained at the same level as in December 2016, which includes all salary increases approved this year and become applicable following their publication in the Official Gazette.

What measures will be postponed in the period 1 January-28 February 2017:

  • not granting prizes, meal vouchers, gift vouchers, holiday vouchers, allowances payable on retirement or disbandment
  • maintaining at the level granted in December 2016 of the allowances of certain categories of people (academics, revolutionaries, artists, persons persecuted for political and ethnic reasons)
  • overtime worked to be compensated with time off only
  • reimbursement of just 3 round trips or 6 one way trips for magistrates and revolutionaries
  • maintaining the basis for calculating the meeting allowances payable to local councillors during the period 1 January – 28 February 2017

Elimination of the surcharge on energy – delayed until 2018. Other measures:

  • Postponement until December 31, 2017 of the deadline from art. 6 of Government Ordinance 5/2013 regarding the introduction of special tax measures on the activities of natural monopolies from the energy and natural gas fields, as amended and supplemented, the deadline from art. 6 of Government Ordinance 6/2013 on the introduction of special tax measures on the exploitation of natural resources, other than natural gas, and the deadline from art. 7 of Government Ordinance 7/2013 on the introduction of tax on additional revenues obtained as a result of the natural gas price deregulation, as amended and supplemented. Not postponing these deadlines would cause a decrease of the budget revenues in 2017 to 974.5 million lei.
  • Orders become enforceable in 2017, for the purposes of both granting certain salary rights to the state employees and the legal interest related to these rights, to be enforced following a similar procedure applied for the titles become enforceable in the previous years, namely by instalments, over a period of 5 years.
  • Maintaining contribution to the pension Pillar II at the level of 2016
  • Keeping the same maximum number of jobs that can be assigned to the administrative-territorial units / sub-units as in 2014
  • Postponing until 1 March 2017 the provisions of the National Education Law 1/2011 for allocating 6% of GDP to education and 1% of GDP to research
  • It is regulated the possibility to carry over the unused amounts from the 2016 budget of the Ministry of Energy, aimed at closing two uncompetitive coal mines of Complexul Energetic Hunedoara. By Emergency Ordinance 86/2016 for revising the 2016 state budget, the amount approved for this purpose is 200 million lei.
  • The amounts allocated in 2016 to the local budgets of the administrative-territorial units from the intervention fund that is at the disposal of the Government, remained unused at the end of the budget year, are carried over to the 2017 budget, to be used with the same aim. Without this regulation, the amounts unused by 31 December this year should have returned to the state budget.
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