Mon, Jan 14, 2013 - Page 3 News List

DPP, TSU legislators urge information transparency

OBTAINING KNOWLEDGE:To gain insight into detailed information on donations currently requires a visit to the Control Yuan in person, as well as a NT$20 charge

By Tseng Wei-chen and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with Staff writer

Legislators from the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and the Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) are calling for amendments to the Act on Property Declaration by Public Servants (公職人員財產申報法) and the Political Donation Act (政治獻金法) to make the information regulated by both acts more transparent to the public.

DPP Legislator Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁) and TSU Legislator Huang We-ling (黃文玲) have already recently submitted draft amendments seeking to make information on property declarations more transparent.

Current regulations stipulate that all elected public officials; the ministers and deputy ministers of the five Yuans; public functionaries; executives in the 10th to 14th level pay-grade; the chairman and supervisors of state-owned corporations; presidents and vice-chancellors of public schools, military officers above the rank of colonel; judges and prosecutors; government ethics department personnel and other executives in unique positions must declare their property.

However, the property declarations made the president, vice president, the ministers and deputy ministers of the five Yuans, the mayors of the five special municipalities, county commissioners, legislators and public functionaries are exempt from publication on the Control Yuan Web site.

Control Yuan regulations stipulate that to gain access to the information, individuals need to visit the Control Yuan, and be 20 years or older. People are only allowed 30 minutes to peruse the information, cannot copy, scan, or take pictures of the documents, and can only request to look at the information of an individual once per year.

Legislators were also dissatisfied with regulations set by the Political Donation Act that require only income statements approved by accountants to be published for public perusal on the Internet and not the entire donation list.

To apply for detailed information on donations, an individual must visit the Control Yuan in person, and each application is subject to a NT$20 charge. Re-printing of the data is costs an additional NT$2 per page.

The draft amendment submitted by Huang called for the inclusion of executives in the 10th to 14th level pay-grade, the chairman and supervisors of state-owned corporations, presidents and vice-chancellors of public schools, as well as military officers above the rank of colonel on the list of those who must have their property declarations publicized online.

Chen’s proposal called for the publication of all civil servants’ property declaration information online, including those that are currently exempted. Chen also proposed a draft amendment to the Political Donations Act to publicize all itemized donation data online.

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