Provincial assemblies’ annual operational cost could exceed Rs 2.55bn
Kathmandu, January 7
Even though the income source and cost bearing capacity of provinces are yet to be tested, the provincial assemblies will have a long list of expenditure, which could exceed the estimated annual budget of Rs 2.55 billion.
According to Parliament’s Joint Secretary Suraj Kumar Dura, it is feared that if the provincial assemblies’ members aspire for facility equal to the Federal Parliament, the budget could be inadequate. “The federal government could grant the necessary budget of one or two initial terms, but later they would have to garner the fund on their own.
The provincial assembly will have long list of pays and perks for lawmakers and office bearers and expenditures for infrastructure and necessary materials. A study carried out by the Legislature-Parliament Secretariat estimated that the operational cost of the entire seven provincial parliaments would be around Rs 2.55 billion annually.
According to Dura, the estimation was done as per the principle of minimal requirements of a unicameral parliament. The requirement includes pays and perks of 550 lawmakers, at least 47 staffers and materials like stationery, recordings, hall rent etc in each province. “The province could demand additional staff, the lawmakers could also demand personal assistants, room rent and transport allowances, which the dissolved Legislative Parliament already enjoyed,” he added. The expenditure could increase if the provincial assemblies formed new committees or structures in their regulation.
Dura also said that before distribution of budget to the provincial assemblies, the cost bearing capacity and income source of the respective province must be evaluated. “We have to think whether the province can afford the expenditure of the assembly on their own in future,” he said.
At present, there are 350 staffers working under the Legislature-Parliament Secretariat. However, the manpower will be divided between the new House of Representatives and the National Assembly that formed the Parliament in the new federal set up.
“Efforts are also being made for interim management of necessary staffers for provincial ministries as well as the assembly secretariats,” said Spokesperson of the Ministry of General Administration Shiva Ram Neupane.
“A minimum number of staff will be deputed as an interim measure for the initial days in the provincial assemblies,” he said.
Provincial parliament secretariat annual operational cost Rs 2.55bln
KATHMANDU: The operational cost of all the seven provincial parliament secretariats is estimated to be around Rs. 2.55 billion annually, according to a study carried out by the Legislature-Parliament Secretariat.
Likewise, the provincial parliament secretariats will have 47 to 50 staffers each to help with administrative responsibilities of the Secretariat.
Initially, however, the Ministry of General Administration will be mobilising 27 to 30 staff each for the provincial parliament secretariats.
The resources required for the provincial parliament secretariat however will be ascertained following the introduction of the provincial parliament regulations, which is currently being drafted.
At present, there are 350 staffers working under the Legislature-Parliament Secretariat.
However, this will be reviewed to be divided between the new House of Representatives and the National Assembly that formed the parliament in the new federal set up.
“Efforts are also being made for interim management of necessary staffers for the provincial ministries as well as the parliament secretariats,” said Spokesperson of the Ministry of General Administration Shiva Ram Neupane.
Even though efforts are being made to adjust staffers from the civil service, health service and parliament service under the employee adjustment act, it has not been possible as the federal parliament and provincial parliament secretariats have a different scope. Hence they would require staff with certain expertise.
As the function, duties and rights of the federal parliament and provincial parliament are different as provided in the constitution, it seems unlikely and impractical for federal parliament staffers to go and work in the provincial parliaments, Parliament Secretariat General Secretary Manohar Prasad Bhattarai said.
Chief of the Administrative Restructuring Unit Prakash Dahal however said that necessary human resources would be managed after the temporary structure and positions are approved for the provinces as an interim measure.
“A minimum number of staff will be deputed as an interim measure for the preliminary days in the provincial parliaments,” he said.