The Slovenia Times

National Assembly facing budget votes and three vetoed bills


Prime Minister Marjan Šarec expressed confidence on Saturday about the passage of budgets for 2020 and 2021, despite a surprise spending increase of over EUR 200 million - in state funding of municipalities - that the opposition voted through on the Financial Committee on Friday.

The government lost its majority in parliament after the Left terminated its cooperation agreement, but it is the populist opposition National Party (SNS) that has indicated it would back the budget documents and its four votes in the 90-member assembly are enough for the government to clear the 45-vote hurdle.

Šarec stressed on Saturday that the budget documents could yet be amended at the plenary and acknowledged the extra spending tickets could prove a problem down the road. Unofficially, the extra spending would lead to a deficit and violate the fiscal compact.

Following the customary questions and answers segment on Monday, the budget will be discussed as part of three marathon sessions on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, as MPs are also scheduled to discuss changes to the VAT act, to the act on legal protection in public procurement and the childcare allowance act.

What is more, the National Assembly is to vote again on the vetoed the motion raising the minimum net hourly rate for student work from EUR 4.13 to EUR 4.56, on a bill providing legal recourse for holders of subordinated bank liabilities wiped out in the 2013 bank bailout, and on the scrapping of a special social benefit for low-income earners and those on welfare who do voluntary work.

Things look good for the first two motions, both of which were confirmed again by the relevant parliamentary committees, while the National Assembly could have a hard time mustering the 46-vote absolute majority in the case of the abolition of the welfare bonus.

The motion, which has been the target of widespread criticism for affecting vulnerable groups, was rejected at committee level this time and it only got 34 votes in the first vote.

The Labour Ministry seems to have also given up on the motion, saying after the committee it would no longer seek support for the bonus abolition. It added it would however continue introducing measure encouraging unemployed persons to become active.

While voting is scheduled for Thursday, MPs are also scheduled to meet on Friday for a special session to debate concerns that the construction of a sewerage system could jeopardise the source of drinking water for Ljubljana.


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