Expose execution status

Below is a description of the status of most crucial activities included in the expose of Prime Minister Donald Tusk, as at February 3, 2012.
 


PUBLIC FINANCES
Draft Act on Amending the Public Finances Act and Certain Other Acts (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, interministerial arrangements have already been completed, consultations with local government entities are in progress).The solutions it suggests allow, inter alia, to limit the increase in debt and deficit of local government entities and create conditions for introducing the fiscal principle throughout the entire public finance sector.

PENSION SYSTEM
Draft Act on Amending the Social Insurance Fund Old Age and Disability Pensions and Certain Other Acts (to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, preparation of the draft in progress). The regulation is concerned with a reform of the pension system and offers solutions that ensure security of the system itself (demographic changes) and of the public finances (limitation of public debt growth). The retirement age of males and females is to be gradually increased and leveled off starting from 2013 – the target assumption is that all employees will be working until the age of 67.

Draft Act on Amending the Social Insurance Fund Old Age and Disability Pensions and Certain Other Acts (the president has signed the act and submitted it, in the follow-on mode, for review by the Constitutional Tribunal, the indexation of old age and disability pensions will take place on March 1, 2012). Introduction of new principles concerning indexation of old age and disability pensions will help reduce the gap between both types of benefits. The indexation will be of the amount-based variety, which is more favorable for poorer old age and disability pensioners.

Draft Uniformed Services Retirement Act (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, interministerial consultations in progress). In line with the Government’s intentions, the new uniformed services’ pension scheme assumes that the seniority required to acquire the right to retire will be extended, as will be the age of the employee.

FISCAL SYSTEM
Act on Amending Certain Other Acts Related to the Execution of the Budget Act (solutions eliminating loopholes in the collection of the so-called “Belka tax” will enter into force in April 2012). The Act offers solutions that prevent by-passing the capital income tax on bank deposits. The regulations are concerned with the so-called daily deposits which were “Belka tax” exempt.

Draft Act on Amending the Personal Income Tax Act (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, the draft awaits submission for interministerial arrangements). The following solutions are envisaged: - liquidation of the Internet tax exemption; - changes in the principles concerning the 50% tax deductible threshold (such a deduction will be possible if the taxpayer’s revenues equal up to PLN 85,000 per year); - changes in the regulations concerning tax allowances for children, in order to improve the situation of families with lowest income levels, as well as families with three or more children: a) for families with one child, whose annual income will not exceed PLN 85,000, the allowance will remain unchanged; b) families with one child, whose income exceeds PLN 85,000 per year, will not have the right to take advantage of the allowance; c) for families with two children – regardless of the income level – the allowance will remain unchanged; d) families with three or more children – regardless of the income level – all children will be covered by the allowance, but its amount will be increased by 50% for the third and each subsequent child.

Draft Act on Amending the Family Benefits Act (planned to be adopted by the government in Q1 2012, interministerial arrangements in progress). The changes proposed are aimed at implementing the principle of social justice and solidarity. The number of persons entitled to a one-off childbirth benefit will be reduced. This type of allowance will be available for families whose annual income does not exceed PLN 85,000.

Assumptions of the Draft Act on Amending the Personal Income Tax Act, the Corporate Income Tax Act, the Act on Lump-Sum Tax on Certain Revenues Generated by Natural Persons,  and the Agricultural Tax Act (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, preparation of the draft in progress). The plan is to impose income tax on revenues from agricultural activity. The proposed solutions include, inter alia: modification of the agricultural tax principles due to the introduction of the income tax; doing away with the price of rye as a reference point for determining agricultural tax rates and introducing an amount-based rate, indexed each year by the inflation rate; limiting the number of exemptions and allowances, as agricultural activity-generated revenues will be subject to income taxation.

INSURANCE PREMIUMS
Act on Amending the Social Insurance System Act (entered into force on February 1, 2012). The disability pension premium payable by the employer has been increased by two percentage points. Such a solution will improve the situation of the public finances sector by limiting growth of the public debt.

Act on Health Insurance Premiums Payable in 2012 by Farmers Not Performing Special Agricultural Production and by Members of Their Households, and on Amending the Act on Publically Financed Healthcare Benefits (entered into force on February 1, 2012). Pursuant to a verdict by the Constitutional Tribunal, a healthcare insurance premium for farmers has been introduced. The premium shall be payable in line with the following principles: - farmers owning less than 6 hectares of land – the premium will be paid by the state budget; - farmers owning between 6 and 15 hectares of land – will pay a premium equaling PLN 18; - farmers owning over 15 hectares of land – will pay a premium equaling PLN 36.

NATURAL RESOURCES
Draft Act on Taxing Certain Mined Minerals (work in the Sejm in progress). As announced by the Prime Minister, the new regulations are to ensure that the state shares the profits generated on mining certain mineral deposits owned by the state (copper and silver tax).

Assumptions to the draft Act on Hydrocarbon Exploration Tax (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, work on the draft in progress). The new regulations are to ensure the state a proper share in the profits generated on natural resources. The above applies to benefits related to shale gas exploitation.

ENTREPRENEURSHIP
Assumptions to the Act on Reducing Certain Administrative Burdens in the Economy (planned to be adopted by the Government on Q2 2012, preparation of the draft in progress). The suggested solutions are a continuation of actions limiting the administrative burden and reporting duties related to business activity, as well as reducing the cost of such activity borne by entrepreneurs.

Assumptions to the draft of the new Construction Law (the draft is expected to be submitted for interministerial arrangements in Q2 2012). The document will offer solutions that will enhance the building process. The new regulations will determine, inter alia, the general principles applicable to the construction of building structures, investor-friendly procedures will be introduced concerning the location of building structures, and administrative procedures preceding the commencement of construction work will be simplified.

JUDICIARY
Assumptions to the draft Act on Amending the Penal Procedure Code, Petty Offences Procedure Code and Fiscal Penal Code (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q2 2012, preparation of the draft in progress). The changes proposed are related to increasing, by one third, the speed of court proceedings, as announced by the Prime Minister. Allowing court clerks to perform procedural tasks (in penal, fiscal penal and petty offences related cases) shall shorten and enhance court proceedings.

Assumptions to the draft Act on Amending the Penal Procedure Code and Certain Other Acts (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, preparation of the draft in progress). The changes are to shorten court proceedings by one third and are related to the following: defendant’s right to participate in the hearing (considered an obligation so far); allowing court clerks to perform procedural tasks in penal cases; limiting the number of scenarios in which the case may be returned to the prosecution office; introducing a new type of property-related security instruments (blocking funds on a bank card).

Assumptions to the draft Act on Amending the Act on Common Courts of Law and the Act on the Prosecution Office (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, preparation of the draft in progress). The document is related to the review of the rights of retired judges and prosecutors, as announced by the Prime Minister. The changes are to relate, inter alia, to the retirement age and seniority required to retire.

OTHER ISSUES
Assumptions to the draft Act on Abrogating or Amending Acts Regulating Certain Professions (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q2 2012, preparation of the draft in progress). It is suggested that access to the so-called regulated professions (requiring specific qualifications provided for by legal regulations) be simplified.

Draft Act on Amending the Bank Guarantee Fund Act and Certain Other Acts (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, interministerial arrangements in progress). Introduction, to the Polish legal system, of the so-called caution fee will be suggested, as a measure to generate other, non-budgetary funds for financing efforts aimed at maintaining stability of the banking sector. The above means that certain financial institutions will be obliged to pay the caution fee to the Bank Guarantee Fund (Bankowy Fundusz Gwarancyjny - BFG). The money will be deposited in a special fund – Stabilization Fund. The fee would be payable twice a year. The amount of the fee will be determined, annually, by the BFG Council.

Package of draft e-administration acts: assumptions to the draft Act on Amending the Act on Digitizing Entities Performing Public Tasks, assumptions to the draft Act on Opening the Public Resources, assumptions to the draft Act on Amending Certain Acts in Relation to the Changes in the Organization of Field Governmental Administration Entities (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, preparation of drafts in progress). The draft legal acts prepared by the Ministry of Administration and Digitization shall follow upon the idea, as presented by Prime Minister Tusk, of enhancing the work of public administration with the use of state-of-the-art computer technologies, and thus contributing to a more common use, by the citizens, of various type of public resources, including those of educational, cultural and scientific character.

Draft Act on Liquidation of Field Representative Offices of the Minister Relevant for State Treasury (adopted by the Government on January 31, 2012). 13 Field Representative Offices of the Minister of State Treasury will be liquidated.

Assumptions to the draft Act on Amending the National Court Register Act and Other Acts (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q1 2012, preparation of the draft in progress). The changes are aimed at facilitating the procedure of registering entrepreneurs in the National Court Register (KRS). It is expected that the number of formal requirements that need to be met while commencing business activity will be reduced, and the requirement to submit a number of forms and certificates will be waved. Inter alia, tax identification (NIP) and statistical (REGON) numbers will be assigned automatically based on the KRS entry.

Assumptions to the draft Act on Amending the Petty Offences Procedure Code (planned to be adopted by the Government in Q2 2012, preparation of the draft in progress). Introduction of electronic minutes in cases involving petty offences (electronic audio recording).

Assumptions to the draft Act on Amending the Bankruptcy and Reorganization Law (the draft assumptions are planned to be submitted for interministerial arrangements in Q2 2012). The objective is to allow a greater number of consumers to take advantage of consumer bankruptcy. The regulations currently in effect are excessively strict. The number of scenarios in which consumer bankruptcy can be announced will be expanded.

Assumptions to the draft Act on Amending the Land and Mortgage Register Act (it is expected that the draft will be submitted for review by the Committee of the Council of Ministers in Q1 2012). A number of facilitations have been envisaged for the citizens, inter alia by introducing a statutory guarantee of common and free access to the land and mortgage register offered via the Internet, and by offering electronic extracts from land and mortgage registers.

Proposed reform of the principles under which retirement rights are acquired (preparation of the draft in progress). The changes are to apply to pensions schemes in the mining sector. Pension-related privileges will be available exclusively to those employees directly involved in mining activities.

Issuing regulations allowing soldiers and police personnel to receive a PLN 300 pay increase effective from July 1, 2012 (preparation of drafts in progress).


See also