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EP budget - Decision to release funds for new 'European House of History' criticised as irresponsible

Date

17 Mar 2011

The European Parliament budget committee today voted to allocate €2.5 million from the EP's budget towards the proposed 'European House of History' (1). The Greens criticised the decision to allocate the funds without cutting spending in other areas, with Green MEP and draftsperson (rapporteur) for the EP's 2011 budget Helga Trüpel saying:

"While the Greens support the proposal to set up a 'European House of History' in principle, the group believes that it is irresponsible to allocate additional public funds to new projects against a backdrop of budgetary cuts across the EU. Any additional spending on new projects must be matched by cutbacks in other budgetary lines in the EP budget.

"In addition, there are a number of question-marks hanging over the project, adding to the case for delaying any release of funding. Questions remain about the anticipated costs - with €13.45 million/year foreseen for operating costs - as well as the general operation and uncertainty about co-financing from other EU institutions. For this reason, I proposed delaying any decision on funding the House of History but, unfortunately, the majority of MEPs (coming from both socialist and EPP groups) failed to support this proposal and voted for an immediate release of funds.

"In the coming years, this project will lead to additional funding of €50 million being needed. MEPs simply cannot approve this enormous increase in funding without cutting other areas of the EP budget."

(1) The 'European House of History' is effectively a museum that is planned to be opened in Brussels in 2014, with funding coming from the European Parliament's budget.
 
Richard More O'Ferrall,
Press and media officer,
Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament
Mobile: +32-477-443842 - Ph. +32-22841669 (Brussels); +33-388174042
www.greens-efa.eu - http://twitter.com/GreensEP

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