Prosecutor-General Huang Shih-ming (黃世銘) was deprived of his entire year-end bonus of NT$430,000 (US$14,296), a decision which all lawmakers agreed with when they screened this year’s central government budget statement yesterday.
Huang was the only official to lose his bonus, with several other motions tabled by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) to slash year-end benefits for senior officials voted down by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT).
The slashing of Huang’s bonus was prompted by dissatisfaction among lawmakers over the controversial pursuit of Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平).
He was accused by the head of the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office Special Investigation Division (SID) of exercising undue influence on the justice system.
A total of NT$4.32 million was cut from the original NT$251.34 million that had been budgeted for the SID this year, including NT$750,000 earmarked for overdue wages for SID prosecutors, Huang’s year-end bonus and other spending.
Half of the budget was temporarily frozen, with the legislature’s Judiciary and Organic Laws and Statutes Committee planning to have further discussions with Huang before they decide to unfreeze the budget.
At the end of the session yesterday — its last day — the legislature passed a budget of NT$1.9162 trillion this year after slashing the budget by 1.26 percent, or NT$24.5 billion.
The KMT downed motions that would have seen officials at the ministerial level or above cut at least half of their year-end bonus, special allowances, and other benefits, as well as cut year-end performance bonus for public servants.
Meanwhile, the legislature yesterday approved an amendment to Medical Care Act (醫療法) to prevent offenses against healthcare workers.
Under the revised act, people who use violence, coercion, intimidation, or other methods to obstruct the execution of medical care practices could be sentenced to three years in prison or fined a maximum of NT$300,000.
The legislature also approved an amendment to the Civil Servant and Teacher Insurance Act (公教人員保險法) to allow private school teachers covered under the nation’s insurance program to enjoy an old age pension as public school teachers.
Also approved by the legislature was the special statute for flood management to allow the government to take out a loan of NT$66 billion in six years in anti-flood projects.