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Marine Martirosyan

MP Bagratyan Says HAK Will Approve 2014 Budget Despite It Being "Cripple"

 HAK MP Hrant Bagratyan today said his parliamentary faction would approve the 2014 draft budget introduced by the government, albeit with reservations.

The main deficiency in the new budget, according to Bagratyan, was a lack of adequate measures designed to raise government revenues.

“Our budget doesn’t deal with the revenue side of the equation. It should ensure an appropriate increase in revenues, but the draft only includes six sentences on the matter,” Bagratyan told Gagik Minasyan, who chairs the Standing Committee on Financial-Credit and Budgetary Affairs.

“The budget is a cripple,” Bagratyan stated adding that the budget includes nothing in reference to Article 106 of the Constitution which specifically states that, “The law shall define the sources of community finances that will secure the discharge of their responsibilities.”

“Who has given you the right to violate the Constitution? Where will such attempts lead us?” Bagratyan asked.

Bagratyan also pointed to a clause in the draft bill that would stop the allocation of revenue and property tax derived funds to local self government bodies.

In response, Minasyan said he found no problem in the law cited or in the draft budget. “If you have found such issues, I am ready to sit down and discuss them together,” he added.

MP Bagratyan argued that he was concerned that a majority of such revenues would wind up in the Yerevan budget, to the detriment of the 900 local communities in the country.