The Senate dropped stitches in checking the policy that ultimately led to the allowance affair. This is the conclusion of an investigative committee of Senate Members.
The Senate did check the legislation, but had “insufficient attention to the points that, in hindsight, mattered most”, says in the self-assessment. According to the report, this concerns, among other things, “concerns about what is now referred to as “doing ability” of parents” and the problems at the Tax Authorities.
Concerns were expressed, but when the end came to a stake, bills were given “the benefit of the doubt”. This led to the emphasis on combating fraud and cuts “and much less on the human aspect”.
The Senate received signals that the Tax Authorities went wrong, but there was hardly any action followed, the committee writes. For example, letters from citizens came in about the complexity of the payment system.
Another example that the researchers call was a report by the National Ombudsman that “set the discovery of the allowance affair in motion”. That report was not sent to the Senate, but was discussed in the media and the House of Representatives.
The Senate is not the first premium to put the hand into its own bosom in the childcare allowance affair. Almost a year ago, the cabinet resigned after a hard report by a parliamentary interrogation committee.
In that report, the House of Representatives did not let itself go free either. The case-law and Council of State also concluded that they made mistakes themselves.
In the affair with childcare allowances, thousands of parents had to unfairly refund money – sometimes tens of thousands of euros – resulting in major financial and social problems.