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The reforms are expected in the upper house of Russian parliament

October 13, 2011, 11:57 UTC+3
Some 27 Federation Council committees with 150 senators do not allow working efficiently, new Speaker of the Federation Council Valentina Matviyenko pointed out
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MOSCOW, October 13 (Itar-Tass) — New Speaker of the Federation Council Valentina Matviyenko offered on Wednesday to cut thrice the number of committees in the Federation Council from 27 to ten committees. Matviyenko noted that the Federation Council structure should be reformed to improve the working efficiency figures, but “not for concrete people.”

The Novye Izvestia recalled that Valentina Matviyenko launched the campaign for a stronger role and a higher status of the upper house of parliament right after taking the post of the Federation Council speaker last September. Some 27 Federation Council committees with 150 senators do not allow working efficiently, she pointed out. “The reform is needed,” Matviyenko said with confidence. However, she did not note what changes for the better should be made in this legislative body. Therefore, it is unclear yet who will head renovated committees and it was only stated that the Federation Council staff will be cut. But it is unclear how this reform will improve the work of senators.

The Kommersant recalled that the former Federation Council speaker Yegor Stroyev, who quitted the post in 2001, left 16 committees and one commission to his successor Sergei Mironov. Already under Mironov, who left the post of the Federation Council speaker last May, the number of commissions reached 11. Meanwhile, some committees, for instance, that for the development of the civil society, information policy, physical culture, sports and the development of the Olympic movement, were formed for concrete officials, a source in the Federation Council staff said.

In reply to a move to increase the staff of enlarged committees Matviyenko noted that “the Federation Council staff will be cut by 20%” regardless the importance of this staff for the FC work. “The president decided to cut the staff of public officials by 20%. No qualified worker will be ignored,” she recalled. Alongside, the Federation Council speaker supported the opinion of a senator Alexander Lotorev that “many senators head the committees for ten years and got accustomed to this work.” “A new blood and fresh staff are needed. Many senators are not engaged in any committees at all,” she underlined.

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