Political parties get money to hire people so they can better control the cabinet. But not all parties make up that budget. Millions sometimes go to the reserve fund or lots return tons. And this is when several groups say that with far too few employees, they have to keep an eye on too many ministries.
In 2019, a motion was passed that made extra money available for political parties for hiring employees. These are often people who help the parliamentarians to get good hedged, for example by reading the many Chamber pieces. But also this year some parties expect that they will not use the entire budget, according to a tour of Nieuwsuur.
The PVV and the VVD did not make up the budget for support and partly refunded it last year. Labour Party member Attje Kuiken does not understand this and explains how difficult the Chamber work can be with the current support. “Its tight. On average, with one or two employees, I have to deal with the whole care and a number of safety issues.” For further expansion of the budget does not seem a majority. Chick: “For the control, a number of additional employees would not be a superfluous luxury.”
But not all political groups think the same: the PVV did not support the motion to increase the budget at the time. It is not the lack of money, but the lack of a “democratic attitude” is the problem, according to PV MP Martin Bosma during the debate on the motion.
In 2020, his party left over two million euros. Part of this went to the partys reserves. The PVV dropped the rest back. This year the PVV expects to retain the same amount and to repay it in full, although MEP Fleur Agema says she can use an extra power.
The SP “was and is not a supporter” of the extra support budget, let a spokesman know. Instead of spending more money for politicians, the party proposes to remove the money “from consultants, advisers and ministries communications” to facilitate control of the cabinet.
In a survey conducted by Nieuwsuur, several parliamentarians indicated that there are not enough staff for proper control. “When I walk past the ministerial room during a debate and the civil servants room next to it, and I see dozens of officials sitting there – also in contact with their department, where there are hundreds of officials – I realize that I am taking up on a single employee with a unequal opponent”, replied a MP in the survey.
fact that parties receive more money for the support of MPs is a “welcome development”, but Chamber work remains a “challenge”, says a spokesman for GroenLinks. However, the party did not make up the entire budget in 2020. The annual statement is “in process” and therefore not yet to be seen.
Spokespersons for both CDA and ChristianUnion call improving support “essential”, but leave the middle of whether the budget is adequate. CDA made up the entire budget in 2020. The Christian Union held a little over and builds up reserves, according to its own say, to cope with changes in the number of staff members.
The VVD does not make up the budget either. In 2019 more than 6,5 tonnes were returned. Previously, the budget that remained to the reserves, but the Group of the European Parliament now has a reserve of EUR 5 million. “I have nothing to complain about support from our group, but I can imagine that smaller groups are different,” says acting VVD chairman Sophie Hermans. She thinks it can help if not the political groups but parliamentary committees get extra help.
In a diptych about Power & Counterpower yesterday we looked at the call for more openness from the cabinet: