Lawmakers keep perks, draw wide rebuke
Santo Domingo.- Lawyers and representatives of civil society organizations yesterday rebuked the deputies for amending on Tuesday the bill on wage caps, by excluding lawmakers from the bans on benefits and incentives for any government official or employee, as the result of administrative mechanisms associated with their jobs.
In addition to getting paid to legislate and attend meetings, the lawmakers also receive per diem and travel expenses for doing their jobs. In fact the deputies agreed to conserve those benefits on Tuesday.
Administrative law expert Olivo Rodriguez called the deputies’ action "a historical aberration" which reveals their lack of common sense, since the Constitution prohibits such aspects to be creating personal benefits. "It is therefore a clear and flagrant violation of the mandates of the Constitution."
For Latin American Social Sciences Faculty (FLACSO) director Cesar Cuello the legislators’ actions are "very regretful and embarrassing" because they violated the laws they themselves created and are bound to respect.
The civil society representative expects the senators to save the day, rejecting the amendments, or hopes the President vetoes the bill otherwise.
The lower Chamber’s decision was also rejected by the young business leaders grouped in Anje. In a statement, they urged to regulation government wages, but with guarantees of fairness.
Institutionalism and Justice Foundation executive vice president Servio Tulio Castaños suggested to debate the piece in the next legislature, on what he considers “distortions.”