Thursday, May 18, 2006

Stop wasting Euros!

Like I mentioned before, the Europarliament is not situated in just one, but three places (Brussels, Luxembourg and Strasbourg). Every once in a while Europarliamentarians must travel between these cities....while some don't even bother to turn up. That costs money and time, whereas they could just as easily do everything in one place. This is unacceptable for an institution that is supposed to represent the interest of over 300million Europeans! It's useless bureucratic waste.

Here are some facts about the Europarliament (from

Facts and figures:
  • The European Parliament is the only assembly in the world not having a sole seat. The European Parliament now spreads over nine main buildings in three cities in three founder member states of the former European Community: Luxembourg, France and Belgium.
  • All 732 MEPs have offices in Strasbourg and Brussels. Secretariat staff has offices in Luxembourg or Brussels and shares a smaller number of offices in Strasbourg.
  • At the moment, Luxembourg holds 20% of the total surface area of European Parliament buildings and 2000 offices. Brussels holds 50% total surface area of European Parliament buildings and 3000 offices, whilst Strasbourg holds 30% total surface area of European Parliament buildings and 2200 offices.
  • The cost of geographical dispersion is estimated to be 15% of EPs budget (but only 0,13% of the total EU budget). The main part of this sum is the costs of having 12 plenary sessions for 60 days a year in Strasbourg: 13% total budget of the EP.
  • A study by Prof S. Hix (London School of Economics shows that: one quarter of MEPs regularly fail to turn up for votes throughout the entire week-long plenary session.
  • The worst attendees are the Italian, Portuguese, and Irish MEPs. The most regular attendees are the Dutch, Greek and French MEPs. (EV 6-12 April 2000)
  • The new building has cost 457 million Euro.
  • Before Enlargement, 3000 people traveled to Brussels to Strasbourg from Brussels (a distance of 300 miles) for a week every month- with 10 new member states and over 100 new MEPs, this number has increased dramatically. We are waiting on response from the Commission on questions detailing the exact number and cost.
  • Before enlargement, the work time loss over these travels is estimated to be over 1 million Euro. On the contrary, when meetings are held in Brussels, only 170 people travel in from Luxembourg.
  • 60 days costs of gas, water and electricity (GWE) for the building in Strasbourg is only 70% for the yearly costs for GWE of the Brussels building.
  • The lack of a single seat costs over €200 million a year. If the EP did its work in only one place- it would save the €200 million.

Please sign the peitition here to keep the Parliament in ONE place! And help Eurotaxpayers save €200million per year that could be better spent elsewhere!

A total of 1million signatures from citizens of the EU is needed to initiate the so-called "participative democracy" process, whereby individuals can propose changes in EU legislation and affairs. So far there's less than 50000 signatures.

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