Basescu: Local public administration should ration costs

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President Traian Basescu believes that the local public administration should ration costs, and that sending public employees on a 10-day unpaid leave to save public money does not seem to him to be the right solution amidst the ongoing economic crisis in Romania.

‘I was the president of the country when excessive staff increases were made. I do not feel guilty for them, but I also cannot plead innocent because they happened partly under my tenure.

These excesses have to stop and we have to manage public money responsibly. My recommendation is that, irrespective of the political hue of the chief officers of the public body, and I would do so if I were in their stead, they should test the staff, and let the good ones stay and the others leave.

We all now that there is excessive weight in the public sector,’ Basescu told a meeting on Thursday with mayors of Tulcea County.
The President also said that ‘Romania’s bureaucratic system is inefficient and the public bodies have to adjust their spending.’

‘We cannot accept the idea that the public bodies do not adjust their spending. That is why rules have to be introduced at a central level and also the local one, and that would be necessary because some communes have 5,000 inhabitants.

Some of them employ 12 pubic workers for the mayor’s office and other 96. How can a mayor’s office operate with 12 or 96 staff?’ wondered Basescu.

The number of public agencies, authorities, administrations and offices has halved from 226 to 113, according to the administrative restructuring blueprint discussed on Wednesday by the Government.

In a press release after the meeting, the Government says that following the discarding, amalgamation or restructuring by incorporation into ministries, there will be 113 agencies and authorities, 33 of which cannot be disbanded because they are required by the European acquis.

As many as 10,554 public jobs will be cut from all the existing agencies and authorities, as well as from the ministries’ own apparatuses. As many as 1,583 of them are budgeted vacancies and the remaining 8,971 are actually occupied.

The economies generated in the process are expected to stand at RON 219.35 million, nearly 52 million euros, in one financial year.
‘The amalgamation solution will reduce both operational spending and spending on goods and services.

The Government has also considered including in the Budget the own revenues of the institutions exclusively or partially self-financed. Such measures would bring a plus in savings of more than 100 million euros,’ reads the release.

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