Gifts, trips for MPs over €150 to be published on Parliament website

By TPN/Lusa, in News · 09-01-2020 16:53:00 · 0 Comments

Travel and hospitality worth over €150 will be published on the personal pages of deputies on the Parliament website, according to rules discussed by the Transparency Committee.

The Transparency Committee and the Statute of the Member of Parliament examined the criteria for offers and hospitality received by deputies, and had majority support of all benches, but the vote was postponed at the request of the People-Animal Nature party (PAN), to examine possible amendments until the next meeting.

This regulation is the practical translation of the Code of Conduct, approved in 2019, the result of the work of the committee to strengthen transparency and the author, Pedro Delgado Alves, of the PS, said that it was inspired in part by the rules of the US Congress and the House of Commons in England.

The parliament will "organize and maintain a public record of all offers received and submitted to it, in accordance with the law and the Code of Conduct, which includes the identification of the MP, the donor, the date of presentation and the destination of the asset".

Regarding the offer of trips and stays, a register is created, which is then published on the deputy's personal page on the Parliament website which includes the summary identification of the event or activity, the respective place and date, as well as the identification of the donor".

Gifts, both of goods and of travel or stays which exceed €150 euros, are listed. Offers below €150 are not listed.

"Offers of an estimated value of more than €150 received in the context of the office or job shall be presented to the General Secretariat of Parliament, for the purpose of their registration and definition of destination".

Once received, the General Secretariat assesses the value and, if it exceeds €150, various destinations may be given, including staying at Parliament (in the historical-parliamentary archives, the library, for example) or being given "to another public entity or to institutions pursuing non-profit making aims of a social, educational and cultural nature".

If it is concluded that the value is less than EUR 150, they may be returned to the Members, or those of "exclusively symbolic or commemorative nature, without any significant utilitarian or artistic value".

Another condition for their return is if they are "perishable goods", for example food, and have been "received in the framework of parliamentary representation activity" and when "they fall within the exclusive purpose of promoting local productive activity".

As for so-called hospitalities, travel and stays, "individual invitations to parliamentarians" for "official events", "by national or foreign public entities", "by private entities, up to an estimated maximum value of €150" are registered.

In these cases, invitations shall only be accepted that "are compatible with the institutional nature or with the relevance of the representation of the office", that "configure a socially appropriate conduct in accordance with custom and practice", and that "travel on behalf of Parliament or in official representation of the respective parliamentary group" shall also be registered.


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