Wednesday’s documents: reform of Sote, investigation into broadband, debts of deputies | Yle Uutiset
Parliament’s Social Affairs Committee yesterday completed its review of the government’s health and social services reform plan – or Sote -, according to a report released on Wednesday Helsingin Sanomat.
The committee approved proposals to transfer responsibility for health care and social services from some 300 Finnish municipalities to 21 new regional authorities and to the city of Helsinki. The committee also recommended that the Sote reform not impose quantitative limits on the outsourcing of health services, writes HS.
Chairman of the committee Markus Lohi (Cen) told reporters that the threshold for rolling back public service outsourcing has been set very high. “I myself know of only one case where this applies, and that is the cancellation of the Länsi-Pohja joint venture contract,” he said.
According to HS, the committee’s report also included two objections to the reform filed by members of the National Coalition Party and the Finnish Party, who make up six of the committee’s 17 members.
Vice-chairman of the committee Mia Laiho (PCN) cited issues such as financing, municipal autonomy and the erosion of local democracy, writes HS, while Arja Juvonen (The Finns) said that “not every old reform is an improvement”.
Parliament is due to vote on the reform next week. If passed, it would allow the very first provincial election to be held in January 2022.
Broadband contract under investigation
by Jyväskylä Keskisuomalainen reports that the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) is investigating a suspected case of financial negligence in a municipality in central Finland.
The case revolves around a broadband project set up under the government of the former prime minister Matti Vanhanen (Cen) over a decade ago, writes Keskisuomalainen, in which state and local authorities subsidized broadband infrastructure in areas where commercial providers wouldn’t install it.
“The [suspected] the negligence is linked to risky financial support decisions before the municipality pays the grant and assumes the financial obligations of the broadband project, ”said the NBI investigator Mikko Kiiski.
The investigation focuses on a single municipal executive, Kiiski said. The person and the municipality in question have not been named.
According to Keskisuomalainen, ten municipalities in central Finland ended up paying when broadband network builders ran into financial difficulties. In total, the municipalities had to pay nearly 30 million euros in grants for the project.
The deputies fall under the spell of the bailiffs
Wednesday Iltalehti reports the news that five sitting deputies, Timo Harakka (SDP), Kai Mykkänen (PCN), Cheikki Laakso (Finnish), Olli immonen (Finnish) and Harry harkimo (MN), have appeared in the debt collection register.
Harakka, Harkimo, Immonen and Mykkänen have all paid off their debts in full, the tabloid reports, while Laakso has pending cases for amounts totaling around 2,500 euros.
SDP Minister Harakka’s debts were incurred when he defaulted on unemployment insurance premiums, Iltalehti writes. Harakka told the newspaper that they were linked to an old company.
“When I became Minister, I put an end to all the business of my company, and the invoices in question seem to have been left at the bottom of the mailbox. All obligations were met and generally on time,” he said. he declared.
Former Home Secretary Mykkänen appeared on the register after failing to pay a 30-euro property tax, IL reports.
“When I was filling out my income tax return that winter, I noticed that [online tax service] OmaVero had received a notice regarding property tax on our share of certain land. The notification only reached OmaVero, so I didn’t notice that I didn’t pay for it, ”Mykkänen told IL.
In the future, Mykkänen will choose to receive tax notifications by email, the newspaper said.
Meanwhile, Immonen and Harkimo’s debts – now fully paid, according to IL – were for parking fines, with Harkimo sued by the town of Kotka for 64 euros and Immonen incurring costs of around 800 euros.