Social Dems to Force Overnight Session in City Council
The Social Democratic Party will again prove to be Estonia's most avid filibusterer, with plans to pull an overnight session today as Tallinn City Council holds the last reading of its annual budget.
The Social Dems submitted 666 amendment proposals in an effort to force city councilors into a night-long voting process, to make a statement that funding for children's sports and other activities is too low.
The budget's revenue and spending amount to 460 and 430 million euros respectively. Around 30 percent of the budget will go toward education and 18 percent to public transportation, which has been free to Tallinn residents since the beginning of this year. Notably, Tallinn has registered thousands of new taxpayers this year thanks to a rising population.
The ruling Center Party, however, said it threw out most of the amendments because they broke the city's statutes by lacking "economic substance."
Deputy Mayor Taavi Aas said the bulk of the proposals were funding requests for repairing the city's roads. Instead of lumping these together, however, each amendment requested 2,000 euros for a single street. Aas said the Center Party managed to bring the number of proposals down to 72, which includes proposals from other parties as well.