Jan Hamacek Andrej Babis

Petr Dubinsky

Hamacek Rejects Babis’s Budget Cuts

The CSSD will not support cuts in coalition negotiations on the state budget for next year, stating there must not be cuts to pensions, salaries, investments, or money to fight the drought. The party wants to increase pensions for next year by an average of CZK 900 a month and send seniors a one-time contribution of at least CZK 5,000 at the beginning of the year. If a higher amount results from negotiations with ANO, it will support it, but the contribution must be the same for everyone.

“The budget must be pro-investment, including investing in people. We will not take money from pensioners, doctors, nurses, firefighters, police, and others,” said Jan Hamáček, chairman of the CSSD.

According to the CSSD, the pandemic has shown the need for a stable and efficient state and the development of digitization and easy access to state administration. They must not be cut in the fight against drought, drinking water, or in investments in motorways or railways. “If the state cuts here, it will return in the future like a boomerang with even higher costs,” added Interior Minister Hamáček.

From January, the Social Democrats propose to increase pensions per month by an average of approximately CZK 900 and to send all seniors a one-time contribution of at least CZK 5,000.

According to the CSSD, the Ministry of Labor budget must take into account a bonus of CZK 500 for each child raised when calculating the pension for parents who cared for the child to a greater extent, but also with earlier retirements for people with selected demanding professions. The Ministry of Agriculture wants to strengthen its budget by CZK ten billion to combat drought, secure water resources, or support afforestation and tackle the bark beetle calamity.

The interior wants more money to invest in the Citizen’s Portal, an electronic collection of laws, strengthening cybersecurity, and the salaries of police officers and firefighters. According to Hamáček, current proposals do not take this into account. “If we are serious about security on the streets, in cyberspace or, for example, the provision of equipment for firefighters, it will cost something. I believe that it will work,” Hamáček said.