In the 460-seat House of Representatives, 231 deputies supported the bill, including 224 members of the current ruling coalition, 208 voted against, and 13 abstained.
Under new regulations coming to the Senate, members of the chamber will be able to choose to continue their work in another chamber of the Supreme Court or retire. At the same time, a new Chamber for Professional Responsibility will be established in the Supreme Court, with 11 judges appointed by the Head of State from a pool of 33 members previously selected by lot from all members of the Supreme Court. The eleven judges appointed for five-year terms will decide not only disciplinary matters but also their current responsibilities.
President Andrzej Duda submitted the draft in early February. One of his goals was to give the Warsaw government a tool to help resolve a rule of law dispute with the European Commission in the Discipline Chamber and to approve a Polish recovery plan for the coronavirus outbreak in Brussels, MTI writes.
They have access to the EU Recovery Framework
The commission called for a milestone in the Polish recovery plan to provide €23.9 billion in grants and a loan of €11.5 billion to include the abolition of the disciplinary chamber, the reform of the judicial disciplinary system and the reinstatement of unjustly dismissed judges. .
The European Court of Justice ruled last July that the Disciplinary Chamber for Judicial and Infractions of the Law, set up in 2018 as part of Poland’s judicial reform, did not provide guarantees of impartiality and independence due to the way its members were elected. . The commission began sanctions last fall for Warsaw’s failure to implement the court’s decision to suspend the chamber’s work.
Among other things, the European Commission has asked the Polish authorities not to take measures to dismiss or force the judges of the Supreme Court to retire. Should such measures be taken, the Commission envisages initiating rule of law proceedings under Article 7.
Meanwhile, last summer, Warsaw envisaged changes to the disciplinary chamber’s regulations as part of an ongoing judicial reform, with the board saying Poland’s ruling coalition had addressed few judicial abuses, and thus failed to meet expectations.
Funds may arrive in September
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki reiterated earlier reports during a parliamentary debate on Thursday that negotiations between Warsaw and the European Commission have concluded with the adoption of milestones and that an agreement will be signed in Ursula von der Leyen on June 2.
Polish government spokesman Piotr Mueller said in an interview on Thursday that the funding request in September “looks realistic”.
With the adoption of the Polish recovery plan, Hungary will be left on its own, and at the moment the Hungarian government does not want to meet the standards of the rule of law in Brussels, so it will not receive money from this fund.
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