Austrian Times RSS FeedsLike the Austrian Times Facebook page!Follow us on Twitter!


Events for December
M T W T F S S
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31 1 2 3 4
Add your event FREE

Today

Videos


BurgKino

Pub Quiz everyTuesday at Johnny's Pub

Popular in Austria


Cosmo&Nanu

Kurz tax idea causes a stir

People’s Party (ÖVP) State Secretary Sebastian Kurz is under fire following a suggestion how Austria’s taxation system could be reformed.

Kurz – who heads the ÖVP’s youth organisation – told the ORF’s Ö1 radio news programme yesterday (Mon) that a certain amount of tax revenues should go where people want it to. He claimed such a restructure might help improving the image of Austria’s politicians. Kurz said a similar system was already in force in some regions of Switzerland. Residents of these areas were trying to evade paying taxes less often, according to Kurz. The areas which use that kind of tax structure were also economically stronger than other regions of Switzerland, Kurz said, adding that he could imagine a law affecting 10 per cent of tax earnings this way.

The ÖVP’s state secretary for integration claimed that people would certainly appreciate knowing where their money went and how it was used. His appeal did not find acclaim among Austria’s Social Democrats (SPÖ). SPÖ General Secretary Günther Kräuter – whose faction forms a government coalition with the conservative ÖVP – said the state secretary’s idea was "ill-conceived". He warned from "wrong developments" if it became legally active.

The opposition parties were less reluctant in their reactions. Werner Kogler, the Green Party’s vice chief, branded the ÖVP Vienna deputy leader’s ideas as "first class populism". Kogler made aware that many Austrians were paying no income taxes due to their low salaries. The Green Party parliament delegate (MP) said these social classes would be kept from any kind of civic participation in decision-making of such regard while people who earned more could suddenly determine how Austria spent some of its tax revenues.

Political scientist Peter Filzmaier said it was possible that most Austrians endorsed the tax reform ideas of Kurz. Filzmaier pointed out that people had the feeling of paying excessive taxes anyway. He also made aware of the rising interest in getting directly involved in political decision-making procedures. Especially the Freedom Party (FPÖ) is strongly engaged in trying to convince the government of a reform of the law for "more direct democracy".

The right-wing party abandoned its negotiations about a constitutional debt brake earlier this year after it realised that the ÖVP would not support its appeal for a quick change of the federal law. The FPÖ wanted to lower the bureaucratic burdens for people interested in organising referendums. The party of Heinz-Christian Strache said it would not support the government coalition’s debt brake plan without a change of the law towards the Swiss model of high civic participation.

Only a few days after the debt limit discussions between ÖVP and FPÖ ended fruitless, ÖVP chief Michael Spindelegger asked Kurz to develop a strategy of how a plus in democracy could be achieved. The vice chancellor said he asked Kurz to find out how young Austrians’ interest in politics could be increased. The ÖVP boss claimed many young people would engage locally but had no interest in federal political developments.

His decision to assign Kurz to create a democracy concept was widely seen as an attempt of keeping all options open for the time after the next general election. Spindelegger refused to rule out a coalition with the FPÖ – which is accused of having xenophobic policies – after the ballot of 2013. The parties cooperated in a government between 2000 and 2005 before the ÖVP teamed up for another two years with the Alliance for the Future of Austria (BZÖ).

Austrian Times


Are you on Facebook? Like the Austrian Times on Facebook and win great prizes!


Cosmo and Nanu
ORF Watch

Related articles: political scandals

  1. Drachma reintroduction 'would mean social explosion'

    » General News 2012-05-31

    A renowned economist has warned from reintroducing the drachma in Greece.

  2. EC warns debt-ridden Austria

    » General News 2012-05-31

    Austria has been criticised for its high public debts.

  3. Graz coalition collapses

    » General News 2012-05-31

    Peopleís Party (÷VP) Graz Mayor Siegfried Nagl has ended his factionís partnership with the Greens.

more related articles tagged "political scandals"

Related articles: crisis

  1. Drachma reintroduction 'would mean social explosion'

    » General News 2012-05-31

    A renowned economist has warned from reintroducing the drachma in Greece.

  2. EC warns debt-ridden Austria

    » General News 2012-05-31

    Austria has been criticised for its high public debts.

  3. Property prices keep climbing

    » Business 2012-05-31

    A real estate expert has expressed concerns about property prices in Austria.

more related articles tagged "crisis"

Tag cloud:
Kogler  vice  paying  rsquo  Ouml  debt  Spindelegger  government  Social  democracy  Austria  taxes  civic  Kurz  reformed  participation  Secretary  coalition  ndash  Filzmaier

Latest News

 

Ebola's deadly reach impacts Vienna student
Austria has yet to record its first case of Ebola, but the feared virus has already had a severe impact on the lives of Africans living in Vienna.

Grigorij Sokolov Works His Magic At Vienna Konzerthaus
Whilst the world-famous Wizard of Oz played at the Volksoper, there was another Wizard in the Konzerthaus giving his 16th performance in Vienna!

Penelope Cruz To Play The Ice Cream Killer
The memoirs of the woman dubbed the Ice Cream Killer after she shot dead two ex-lovers before hacking the bodies up with a chainsaw and telling neighbours the noise was a new ice cream machine are due to be turned into a blockbuster with Penelope Cruz playing the lead role.

Kid Left In Coma After Beaten By Teacher For Talking
This is the shocking image of a little Chinese girl before and after she was punished by her teacher - for talking in class.

Freezing Rain Causes Chaos In Central Europe
Freezing weather has arrived in Europe with a vengeance with a layer of ice blanketing parts of Austria, Germany and the Czech Republic and causing traffic chaos.

Holey Smoke As Car Disappears Down Sinkhole
Motorist Wei Hsiao found himself in a hole lot of trouble in China when a giant sinkhole opened up on the road beneath him, swallowing his entire car.

Shock Moment Police Helicopter Explodes On Street
This is the moment a police helicopter exploded into a spinning ball of flame in Chile when a fire truck clipped one of its rotors.

More Than Twenty 100,000 GBP Motors Used In Bridal Convoy
A Chinese couple who wanted to have the most expensive wedding convoy possible arranged for a convoy of top of the range cars including a stretch Hummer followed by Lamborghinis, Porsches and other VIP motors.

Riot Police Star In Downs Syndrome Calendar
Spanish riot police have joined forces with Down's syndrome kids to take part in a special calendar for charity.

Chinese Nuclear Winter Smog Leaves Clinics Full
Fresh proof of Chinese scientists' claims that the country's toxic air pollution resembles a nuclear winter are shown by these images that show clinics and hospitals packed with patients suffering with trouble breathing.

 


Mala Vrata

The most popular stories –
last 7 days



Don't moan alone, the Ombudsman Investigates.

Why suffer in silence. Let off steam by letting our readers share your troubles. File your complaints about anything and everything here.

Our ombudsman David Rogers will try and help solve some of the problems from lazy civil servants through to incompetent companies – and at the very least the worst transgressors will end up in our weekly special report.


Austrian Zimmers