Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2008-04-09-Speech-3-331"

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". Madam President, the European Parliament’s budget for 2009 will be a very special one, as this Parliament will have codecision in almost all areas for the first time if the new Treaty enters into force in 2009. The Treaty of Lisbon achieves what our predecessors were already calling for more than 50 years ago without obtaining it: not just advisory powers, not just assent procedures, but codecision and democratic control by this Parliament over nearly all of Brussels’s policy areas. The inclination to call for more staff is therefore great. Codecision means a more difficult procedure in each committee, but it does not mean double the workload. This budget therefore remains cautious, and that is good. Where additional staff are needed, redeployment is attempted. Few new staff will be employed – indeed, that would be hard to justify with almost 6 000 employees. The work of this Parliament must indeed be made more visible. Web-TV is to be launched after the summer and, on behalf of the Socialist Group in the European Parliament, I hope that the editorial team enjoys a position of independence, with full freedom to show the debates held here. We owe our voters that openness. What we also owe our voters is full verifiability of our expenditure, and good management of human resources. Assistants must have a proper contract, with the social security and pension provision usual in each European institution. At least 1 in 10 members of staff are working here without any social protection. This has to change. A statute for employees must be brought in, preferably by the end of this year, and it is incredible that there are attempts to oppose this, to oppose the social spirit, the spirit of solidarity, of the European Union, from the ranks of the Group of the European People’s Party (Christian Democrats) and European Democrats. Further work will have to be done on long-term strategies, regarding for example the purchase of buildings and technological innovation. The Statute for Members also has an impact on the budget. Subsidies to the Sakharov Foundation in Moscow must be no more than one-off cases, nor is it the primary role of this House to finance museums of European history; such expenditure must be borne by the European budget. Further debate is needed on this."@en1

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