Draft bill #9159 of March 30, 2023
Cosponsors: a group of MPs from the Servant of the People faction with Heorhii Mazurashu as the first signatory
Who is affected: civil servants and government officials, including judges, prosecutors, employees of the National Bank, SBI, NABU, National Commission for State Regulation of Energy and Public Utilities, National Council on Television and Radio Broadcasting, local governments, members of supervisory boards of state-owned enterprises, establishments, and organizations, service members of the Armed Forces, Security Service, Foreign Intelligence Service, Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense, National Guard, State Border Service, State Security Administration, and employees of the State Emergency Service.
Summary of the bill:
- in 2023, until the end of martial law, the remuneration for civil servants and officials working for the state will be limited by a ceiling of 10 minimum wages (currently ₴67,000)
- this limit will apply to MPs, judges, judges of the Constitutional Court, members of the High Qualification Commission of Judges, Supreme Council of Justice, prosecutors, National Bank employees, and all other civil servants and officials whose remuneration is defined by specific laws (e.g., members of the National Council on Television and Radio Broadcasting and the National Commission for State Regulation of Energy and Public Utilities, NABU detectives, SBI investigators, and prosecutors of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office)
- the limit will not apply to service members of the Armed Forces, SSU, Foreign Intelligence Service, Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense, National Guard, State Border Service, top officials of NABU special operations, and police officers directly involved in repelling the Russian aggression
- the limit will also apply to heads, deputy heads, and members of supervisory boards of state-owned enterprises, establishments, and organizations, state-owned holding companies, joint-stock companies, and economic entities if more than 50% of their shares are owned by the state
- the extra money that is supposed to be saved will be used to pay allowances to service members and members of their families.
What is right:
- the extra money that can be used to pay allowances to service members and members of their families
- it is legal to limit remuneration for civil servants and officials, in particular judges and prosecutors, during martial law. However, such restrictions must be clear and reasoned, based on calculations of budget revenues and spending, and discussed with representatives of the government bodies they affect.
What is wrong:
- the draft bill provisions no changes to budget spending calculations that are needed to save money or use it for the needs of the military instead. There are no calculations concerning the amount of saved funds and the number of civil servants and officials affected by the draft bill. This indicates that the document was not properly prepared
- decent remuneration is one of the guarantees of government bodies’ independence since it allows their employees not to work for oligarchs or hostile agencies. If the remuneration is substantially limited or reduced, some people will be tempted. Instead of increasing social security for service members, the bill will significantly increase risks to national security and the independence of government bodies
- in practice, the draft bill will affect only a limited circle of subjects: representatives of the judiciary, newly created anti-corruption bodies, and state regulators. These are extremely important state institutions and undermining their independence will negatively affect the functioning of the state as a whole.
Alternative solution: either withdraw the draft bill or provide appropriate budgetary calculations and consult with all government bodies whose interests are affected by the bill. Everyone understands that the war is raging and resources are limited, but the Parliament cannot make such decisions without consulting affected parties.
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