Council of State: ‘Supervision on law deficit’

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Raad van State: ‘Toezicht op wetten schiet tekort’

Archive view: protest against personeelsbesparingen under the magistrates

The acute shortage of personnel makes that the Council of State hardly are hereby entitled to. “Often, we limit ourselves to superficial examination.’

The Council of State plays an important role in the legislative process: the legislative department assesses just about every new piece of legislation on the quality and legal correctness, and provides a (compulsory) advice, where the politics, but to better take into account. So get the laws that, whether or not by an external ghostwriter, à la tête du client are written, in principle, the light is red.

But the acute shortage of personnel and the poor quality of the submitted texts that the Board hardly merits its task is due. That says Jeroen Van Nieuwenhove, a magistrate in the Council of State, to The Standard as a result of the series of ‘The Invisible Power’. Such a statement of the Council is quite unseen.

‘The number of requests for advice has, since the early eighties, a fivefold increase, but the number of staatsraden (magistrates at the Council of State, red.) is not followed’, says Van Nieuwenhove. ‘Today we are fourteen, in the eighties we were twelve. The corps of officers, that our assist is slightly expanded but insufficient to allow the flow of legislation to follow. The result is that we for some texts – mostly technical – no advice to give more. In the major texts, with major political impact, we will limit ourselves to a superficial examination. We focus only on the biggest legal obstacles.’

Day of action for the magistrates
It happens that the government is an opinion contravenes. That is her every right, but then she should be in parliament to justify and this is where the problem lies. According to Van Nieuwenhove the texts are also, all too often, editorial lta. “It is basic errors that are clearly the result of hurried work.’ The netherlands is a model country. “There is a lot more invested in wetgevingsjuristen. Quality of legislation needs you to the source address.’

The Legislation department of the Council of State is officially under the jurisdiction of the minister of Home Affairs and not that of Justice, but her cry for help is, coincidentally, the day before the annual day of action of the legal world and connect it to. The magistrates find that they are by the ongoing labor shortage is not in their mission. Since 2015, they dispute, with the support of the League for human Rights, and the French-speaking bar association, to the savings at the ministry of Justice, to denounce. The Dutch lawyers do not participate in the action, all complaining they could well be the under-funding, that is ‘bad’ for the functioning of the democratic rule of law.