The legislature yesterday revised rules allowing for an increase of about NT$20 billion (US$661.7 million) to the annual education budget, to be used to extend compulsory education from nine years to 12 years starting in 2014.
Under the amended Compilation and Administration of Educational Expenditures Act (教育經費編列與管理法), the yearly education budget cannot be less than 22.5 percent of the net tax income of the previous three years, up from the present 21.5 percent.
The amendment stipulates that the newly added budget of NT$20 billion must be used to implement the 12-year compulsory education proposal by 2014, to ensure that the project does not crowd out existing education spending.
In view of the decreasing number of students as a result of a declining fertility rate, the legislature approved an amendment to the Private School Act (私立學校法) that allows for conversion of use of private-school land to other purposes related to cultural and social welfare institutions.
The amendment exempted private schools from being subject to a penalty under the Land Tax Act (土地稅法) for the use of land inconsistent with the designated purpose of donation, a fine equal to two times the land value increment tax.
Meanwhile, the legislature yesterday approved an amendment to the Organic Act of the National Security Bureau (國家安全局組織法) to change the organization into a three-tier system modeled on the US’ CIA.
Based on the amendment, the security bureau can set up subordinate units within the bureau, as well as establish overseas missions when necessary.