bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Saturday 29.02.2020 | Name days:
LatviaLatvia

Saeima’s Legal Affairs Office warns about potentially anti-Constitutional initiative

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUBefore deciding on Welfare Ministry’s offer to reduce the length of payment period for unemployed benefits and their size, Latvia’s Saeima deputies are urged to check the legislative draft’s compliance with the Constitution, as concluded by Saeima’s Legal Affairs Office.

The Legal Affairs Office stresses that the reduction of the guaranteed social security benefit can be considered a limitation of rights backed by Section 109 of the Constitution of the Republic of Latvia. This is why it is the parliament’s duty to assess the legislative draft’s compliance with the Constitution and make sure the planned rights limitations matches the principle of proportionality.

The legislator has a duty to make sure the selected legislation was not picked arbitrarily and has rational and objective facts behind it, and that the reduction of the payment period length and benefit size is not disproportionate. It is also important to plan out possible alternatives to the regulation, Saeima lawyers suggest.

According to the Legal Affairs office, the legislative draft’s annotation does not provide a clear and unambiguous explanation for the draft’s compliance with Section 109 of the Constitution. This is why deputies are invited to request a more detailed explanation about the chosen regulation’s compliance with the Constitution, and ‘only once full confidence about both the unemployed benefit’s payment length and size reduction’s proportionality has been reaffirmed’, decide on its approval.

«Although the legal arbitrariness principle does not exclude the possibility for the state to amend existing regulation, the state must take into account the rights the preservation or implementation of which may create a legal, justified and comprehensive arbitrariness for residents,» Saeima’s Legal Affairs Office writes.

To protect residents in the event of legal arbitrariness, when a person receives the status of an unemployed person before new regulation has come to force, the legislative draft allows for expanding transition requirements and stating that a person who received unemployed status prior to 31 December 2019, unemployed benefits are to be provided, calculated and paid in accordance with legislative norms that were in force before the aforementioned date.

«Nevertheless, we wish to turn attention to the fact that this condition does not make it sufficiently clear which legislative norms are applicable in the event if a person loses their unemployed status within 12 months and then receives it again,» Saeima’s lawyers write, adding that the Constitutional Court has declared it is the parliament’s duty to make sure legislative norms are formulated in an unambiguous way and allow for correct interpretation. ‘We urge to clarify the proposed transition requirements to protect the rights of people who received unemployed status prior to 31 December 2018 and ones who received it again within 12 months of that,’ the Legal Affairs Office urges.

Welfare Ministry, meanwhile, sees no problems with the proposal’s compliance with the Constitution. Looking at compliance of proposed changes to Section 105 of the Constitution, which states that every person has the right to own property, the ministry says rights to own property include the rights of the state to limit use of property in accordance with public interests, which stems from the property’s social function – each owner has the duty to keep in mind the interests of others.

«A person’s paid state social insurance fees guarantee their right to receive support if they become unemployed. However, payment of the fee does not guarantee a specific amount. As long as the person is not provided support, the person has neither ownership rights for this service nor the right for a future benefit amount,» Welfare Ministry believes.

Looking at the compliance of proposed changes to Section 109 of the Constitution, which states that every person has the rights for social security in the event of retirement, inability to work, unemployment and other such cases, Welfare Ministry says the Constitutional Court has noted that the state has a duty to provide people with support in the even of unemployment and ensure the person is not left with no way to support themselves. Still, the ministry says the specific section of the Constitution does not detail a duty for the state to preserve for the person the same or equal income level they had prior to becoming unemployed.

«Unemployment insurance, like every other form of insurance, is based on a principle of solidarity. At the same time, it contributes to the longevity of the state social insurance special budget,» Welfare Ministry explains its position.

The ministry believes changes have a legitimate goal driving them – ensuring welfare for society, motivating unemployed persons to seek jobs more actively, as well as contributing to the longevity of the social insurance special budget. «Considering the goal – by promoting unemployed persons’ return to the labour market and thereby helping to resolve the labour force availability problem, it is also possible to divert funds to help raise minimal retirement pension calculation base, as well as state social insurance benefit for disabled people, it is believed to be sufficient public benefit, reaching which it is allowed to proportionally limit legal interests of private persons,» Welfare Ministry wrote to deputies.

As it is known, on 30 October the Saeima supported in the first reading amendments to the Law on Insurance in the Event of Unemployment, shortening the unemployed benefit payment period’s length from nine to eight calendar months.


Leave a reply

Gints Miķelsons put in charge of Latvian Construction Contractors Partnership

From 1 March 2020 onward Gints Miķelsons, who has been the head of Latvian Sustainable Construction Council will be in charge of the Latvian Construction Contractors Partnership, as confirmed by construction contractors.

While Latvia’s GDP grows 2.2%, other Baltic States experience more rapid growth

In 2019, Latvia experienced the slowest GDP growth among Baltic States, according to data from Latvia’s Central Statistical Bureau of Latvia.

Latvia’s GDP growth reportedly 2.2% in 2019

Compared to 2018, the economic growth continued and Gross Domestic Product increased by 2.2 %. In 2019, GDP at current prices amounted to EUR 30.5 billion. Compared to Q3, in Q4 2019 GDP at constant prices grew by 0.1 %, according to seasonally and calendar adjusted data.

Retail trade turnover in Latvia up 2.6% in January

Compared to January 2019, total retail trade turnover rose by 2.6 % in January 2020. Turnover of retail trade in food products grew by 4.4 %.

Vilnis Ķirsis to remain in charge of Unity’s faction in Riga

On Thursday, 27 February, Vilnis Ķirsis was once again picked as the head of Unity party’s faction in Riga, as confirmed by the party.

Latvia and USA sign joint declaration to enhance 5G network security

On Thursday, 27 February, Latvia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sign a joint US-Latvian declaration on 5G network security, as reported by Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Estonian Tallink Grupp sees profit growth of EUR 9.7 million on year

Estonian provider of ferry transport and related services Tallink Grupp has worked in 2019 with a net profit of 49.7 million euros, according to its unaudited financial results of the year, as reported by Estonian public broadcaster ERR.

Jakrins reportedly a beneficiary in a company that organizes Brasas and Deglava bridge repairs

Long-standing Riga City Council official Emīls Jakrins, who was in charge of the Transport Department not long ago, is beneficiary and factual owner of LLC TecPro Construction, which is a contractor to Lithuanian company Kauno tiltai, which has been hired by the city council to repair Brasas and Deglavas bridges, as reported by Diena newspaper, referencing unofficial information.

UK ready to switch to WTO trade rules if no EU by end of year

The British government has declared that unless concessions are made by Brussels in EU-UK talks on their future cooperation, the former EU member would trade with the bloc on WTO rules from 2021, British news portal The Guardian reports.

Residents able to submit compulsory income declarations by 1 June; VID urges using EDS

March 2020 will mark the beginning of the three-month period within which all residents for whom it is compulsory will be able to submit their income declaration for 2019. This period will last three years for residents for whom this process is voluntary, as reminded by the State Revenue Service.

Lithuanian border guards start informing travellers about the situation with Covid-19

As the new coronavirus Covid-19 continues spreading in Europe, Lithuanian border guards have begun informing travellers from Latvia and Poland about necessary protective measures.

Turkish soldiers killed in Syria, in regime airstrike, Ankara says

In the current epicentre of the Syrian civil war, 33 soldiers of the NATO member state Turkey have been killed as Syrian government military aviation carried out attacks on Turkish military posts set up in its neighbouring country, German broadcaster DW reports citing Ankara.

Weather in Latvia to be winter-like at week’s end

Weather in Latvia is expected to be winter-like at the end of the week – air temperature is expected to drop below 0° C at night in most of the country. In some areas cold snap may be felt during the day, as reported by Latvian Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

First coronavirus infection case found in Lithuania

The first coronavirus infection case is confirmed in Lithuania, as mentioned in Lithuanian government’s statement released on Friday, 28 February, as reported by 15min.lt.

SPKC urges passengers of 26 February Istanbul-Riga flight to respond

Latvia’s Disease Control and Prevention Centre is looking for passengers who flew together with confirmed coronavirus patient from Istanbul to Riga on Wednesday, 26 February.

Regional hospitals in Latvia report high demand for protective clothing

Because of the outbreak of the new coronavirus Covid-19, demand has considerably increased for individual protective clothing, which forces prices to go up, as reported by heads of hospitals.

Rail Baltica not just marvelled, but cussed too in Lithuania

If implemented, the ambitious 5.8-billion euro Rail Baltica project aiming to build a nearly 1000-kilometer rail link from Helsinki to Poland through Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia will be a major infrastructural achievement of the Baltics, but the possibility of dashing at the now surreal speed of 250 kilometres per hour as soon as in 2026, when the project is slated for completion, comes at expense of many land owners in Lithuania’s six municipalities, which will be crossed by the European-gauge tracks.

Construction costs in Latvia up 2.8% in January

Compared to December 2019, the level of construction costs in Latvia fell by 0.2 % in January 2020. Labour remuneration of workers reduced by 0.9 %, prices of building materials – by 0.1 %, but maintenance and operational costs of machinery and equipment – rose by 0.2 %.

In Greece, violent protests against new migrant camps continue for 3rd day

In Greece, continued protests and clashes have resulted in over 60 people suffering injuries as people on the islands of Lesbos and Chios protest against the construction of new migrant centres, British public broadcaster BBC reports.

Minister says Latvia’s initiated territorial reform will create more sustainable municipalities

The report from the European Commission mentions that Latvian government’s initiated administrative territorial reform will create more sustainable municipalities with greater capacity and ability to provide services of comparable quality, as reported by Environment Protection and Regional Development Ministry.

Latvian Saeima changes the prosecutor general’s selection order

On Thursday, 27 February, Latvia’s Saeima approved amendments to the order under which the country’s prosecutor general is selected.

Textile producer in Lithuania complies with Greenpeace standards in industrial textile making

Lithuanian textiles producer Utenos Trikotažas has been deemed by environmental protection organisation Greenpeace as complying with the standards of the later as to not using hazardous chemicals and being fair and transparent in its business, LRT reports.

From March onward prices of alcoholic beverages to increase in Latvia

Through a measured and gradual increase of excise tax rate policy, starting with 1 March 2020 the excise tax rate for alcoholic beverages in Latvia will increase, as confirmed by the State Revenue Service.

435 whistle-blower reports received in eight months in Latvia

In the first year of the Whistleblowing Law, Latvian central state institutions have received 435 reports from whistle-blowers, as reported by the State Chancellery.

Estonia finds first positive coronavirus case

In Estonia, the first case of a person being infected with the novel coronavirus has been found, stated Estonian Social Affairs Minister Tanel Kiik on Thursday, February 27, as cited by Estonian public broadcaster ERR.

Newest comments

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!