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Romania

In law
78
In practice
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In Romania, parties, in law and in practice, receive direct public funding. Indirect funding, in the form of free access to advertising on public media, is granted to both parties and candidates. Other, non-financial state resources, however, are frequently abused for campaign purposes in Romania. Contributions to both candidates and parties are highly regulated, and electoral spending is capped for both actors as well. Despite the extensive legal framework in this regard, parties elude the legally specified limits on contribution and expenditure in various ways. Reporting requirements in Romania mandate that all parties and candidates file financial reports during campaigns; only parties must report outside of campaigns. Despite legal requirements, in practice, the names of contributors are regularly excluded from reports. All submitted financial information, however, is made available online in pdf formats. Third party actors, especially NGOs that are closely tied to particular parties, are involved in election campaigns, but their independent political activities are not subject to any regulation. The Electoral Permanent Authority (AEP) oversees political finance. Its appointees are highly politicized, but there are some in practice guarantees in place to protect their independence. The AEP is active in its oversight role, as it carries out investigations and imposes sanctions, despite having some budgeting and staffing constraints. Offenders usually comply with the sanctions imposed, but repeat offenders occasionally appear.

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    Direct and Indirect Public Funding

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      Direct Public Funding
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        1
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, there is direct public funding for electoral campaigns.More about indicator

        Law 334/2006 governs all types of national elections (presidential, Senate, and Chamber of Deputies) and elections for the European Parliament. The main beneficiaries are parties; the law allocates direct public funding only to political parties even though independent candidates can be also elected (e.g. Chapter IV - Financing during electoral campaigns apply both to parties and independent candidates). Presidential candidates do not receive direct public funding if they run as independents, but the parties supporting their campaigns (when the president is partisan) do receive public funding. Article 3 of the law on financing of political parties mentions that public subsidies are one of the financing sources of political parties in Romania (par. 2, letter d). Chapter III further regulates eligibility criteria for subsidies from the state budget (art. 15 & 16), as well as the purposes for which this budget can be used (art. 20); electoral campaign is one of the 12 purposes the income from subsidies from the state budget can be used for (art. 20, par. 1, letter l). Chapter IV focuses explicitly on issues related to financing during electoral campaigns: section 1 gathers general provisions on electoral campaign contributions, section 2 delineates the limits of the expenses to be incurred by parties during each electoral campaign, section 3 focuses on the system of ceiling on campaign expenditure.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where there is direct public funding for both political parties and individual candidates to campaign. A 100 also applies where only one of the two actors can be elected and, therefore, only one is entitled to direct public funding.

        A MODERATE score is earned where per law only one of the two actors (either political parties or individual candidates) is allocated direct public funding to campaign, even though both can be elected.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), updated version available at: http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/articole-legislatie/item-2-legislatie/. Relevant articles: art. 3, art. 15, art 16, art. 20.

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        2
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, there is a transparent and equitable mechanism to determine direct public funding for electoral campaigns.More about indicator

        Law 334/2006 governs all types of national elections (presidential, Senate, and Chamber of Deputies) as well as elections for the European Parliament. Direct public funding for political parties (not to independent candidates though) is allocated through clearly defined and transparent calculation mechanisms. Regarding equitability, the allocation mechanisms are designed in favor of parliamentary parties and extra parliamentary parties receive a tiny share. The law specifies first (art. 14, par. 2) the total amount that goes to political parties – no larger than 0.04% of the state budget. The amount of public funding can increase depending on the number of women elected in Parliament. Paragraph (3) of the same article explains that public funding is awarded on the basis of two criteria: the number of votes obtained at the parliamentary elections and the number of votes obtained at the local elections.

        Art. 15 clarifies that three quarters of the money goes only to the parliamentary parties (that pass the electoral threshold – 5% for individual parties, 8% for a coalition/alliance of 2 parties, 9% for a coalition/alliance of 3 parties and 10% for a coalition/alliance of 4 or more parties) in the national legislative elections (the elections for the two Chambers of Parliament – Chamber of Deputies and Senate take place at the same time, following the same electoral rules):

        “75% of the annual budget allotted to political parties shall be divided to the same, in direct proportion with the number of votes obtained at the parliamentary elections, that is based on the average number of validly expressed votes for the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate, if they made the electoral threshold.”

        Art. 16 explains that the rest of 25% of the budget is divided among political parties that secured a minimum of 50 county councilors in the local elections. This means that parliamentary parties are also included in the allocation of this 25% and usually they get most of the votes in local elections as well. Local elections take place half a year before the national parliamentary elections. The Government Decision no. 749 of 11 July 2007 on approving the Methodological Norms for applying Law no. 334/2006 on financing activities of political parties and electoral campaigns includes the mathematic formula for the calculation of the state subsidy (chapter 3, art. 18).

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) direct public funding for political parties and individual candidates' electoral campaigns is allocated through a clearly defined calculation mechanism that is transparent and equitable, and 2) there are clearly defined eligibility criteria.

        A MODERATE score is earned where direct public funding for political party and individual candidates' electoral campaigns is allocated through a clearly defined calculation mechanism that is transparent and equitable, but eligibility criteria are not clearly defined.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 14-16, 18, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Government Decision no. 749 of 11 July 2007 on approving the Methodological Norms for applying Law no. 334/2006 on financing activities of political parties and electoral campaigns (Hot?rârea Guvernului nr. 749/2007 pentru aprobarea Normelor metodologice de aplicare a Legii nr. 334/2006 privind finan?area activit??ii partidelor politice ?i a campaniilor electorale, cu modific?rile ?i complet?rile ulterioare. Text actualizat de Autoritatea electorala permanenta). Chapter 3 (art. 18), available at: http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Hot%C4%83r%C3%A2rea-nr.749-din-2007.pdf

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        3
        Score
        75
        In practice, to what extent is the mechanism to determine direct public funding for electoral campaigns transparent, equitable and consistently applied?More about indicator

        Direct public funding allocations are defined through a transparent calculation mechanism and the two criteria specified by law are applied consistently both during the electoral campaign and outside this period. Marian Muhulet, vice-president of the AEP, said:

        “From my point of view, they are 100% transparent. Regarding equitability, this is an issue to be assessed by the political class. So far I have never heard any of the political parties, at least the parliamentary ones, to propose the change of the law on party financing. If they accept this mechanism, then it is also equitable (…) And I do not refer here only to the major parties in Parliament, but also to smaller parties, even those that do not have their own parliamentary party group. Regarding the eligibility criteria, they are respected to full extent in the distribution of funds. We are the institution in charge of the distribution of direct public funding to political competitors.”

        Sergiu Miscoiu, political scientists and analyst confirms Muhulet’s statement and sAEPks about the transparent applicability of the legal provisions:

        “In practice, the allocation of public funding to political parties follows the law on party financing. It is a law that specifies very precise conditions and eligibility criteria and the way in which authorities apply the law cannot be questioned. Money are calculated and allocated on the basis of those criteria and usually parties complain about some delays regarding the transfers, but this is a minor aspect. In brief, the allocation of direct public funding is a transparent decision of state authorities done on the basis of a publicly available calculus.”

        The publicly available calculus mentioned by Miscoiu is available on the AEP website. The reports presented in the sources field refer to direct public funding for the most recent two months (June and July 2014) allocated both to parliamentary and extra-parliamentary parties. The eligibility criteria specified in Law 334/2006 are fully respected (number of votes in parliamentary and local elections in the most recent elections, 2012).

        As explained in indicators 1 and 2, presidential candidates do not receive direct public funding.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) electoral campaigns allocations are always defined through a clearly defined transparent and equitable calculation mechanism, and 2) the defined eligibility criteria are applied consistently.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) electoral campaign allocations are usually defined through a clearly defined transparent and equitable calculation mechanism but exceptions exist, or 2) the eligibility criteria are usually applied but exceptions exist.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) political campaign allocations are rarely or never defined through a clearly defined transparent and equitable calculation mechanism, or 2) the defined eligibility criteria are rarely applied.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 2. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014.

        Primary sources: AEP, Public Funding for Political Parties, June 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/subventiiiunie.pdf AEP, Public Funding for Political Parties, July 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/PAGINA-TOTAL-SUBVENTIE-LUNA-IULIE-2014SITE1-EX.pdf AEP, Public Funding for Political Parties, 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/subventii-publice-2014/

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        4
        Score
        75
        In practice, to what extent does the entity in charge of public funding make disbursement information publicly available?More about indicator

        Complete information on the disbursements is published less than a month after disbursement on the AEP website. All reports are publicly available (see the link provided in the primary sources) and this has been also what Muhulet, the AEP vice-president, pointed out during the interview. For example, the disbursement for July became available on the website on 14 July. Reports are published in a standardized form and include the name of the party and the amount received from state budget.

        Sergiu Miscoiu, political analyst, also considers that the public has access to this information in timely manner:

        “In law there are methods to make this information public and the requirements are always met. Basic information is provided and if supplementary information is required, the law on access to public information means that citizens can get more data. There were cases of journalists who used this law to get more information. From the perspective of access to information there are no problems. The major problem is that very few citizens and politicians are aware and interested in getting access to this type of information. There is no proactive attitude on the side of citizens and they rarely seek this type of information.”

        As explained in indicators 1 and 2, presidential candidates do not receive direct public funding.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) complete information on the disbursements is published less than a month after disbursement, and 2) the information is available on the Internet for free or in hard copy at photocopying cost.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) the information published is incomplete or published more than two months after disbursement, or 2) obtaining the information costs more than photocopying.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) disbursement information is published more than four months after disbursement, or 2) no disbursement information is published or released upon request.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 2. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014.

        Primary sources: AEP Website, Financial Reports, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/, last accessed 30 July 2014. AEP, Public Funding for Political Parties, June 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/subventii_iunie.pdf

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      Indirect Public Funding
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        5
        Score
        YES
        In law, use of state resources in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates is prohibited.More about indicator

        The ban is explicit in the law and it refers to the neutrality of state resources towards all competitors. According to Art. 25, par. 1, of the law on the financing of political parties, the state remains neutral and does not fund any partisan activities during campaign:

        “The financing by any means of the electoral campaign of a party, alliance of a party or independent candidate by a public authority, public institution, autonomous administration, national company, trading company or banking company in which the state or local administrative units are the majority shareholder, or by trading companies pursuing activities financed from public funds is forbidden. The interdiction also applies for trading companies which, 12 months before the initiation of the electoral campaign pursued activities financed from public funds.”

        According to Art. 10, par. 1) of the same law has an explicit prohibition on the use of non-financial resources (staff, vehicles, buildings) belonging to public institutions:

        "The use of financial, human or technical resources belonging to public institutions, autonomous administrations, national companies, trading companies or banking companies in which the state or a local administrative unit is the majority shareholder to support the activity of political parties or of the electoral campaigns of the same is forbidden, except according to the conditions established by the electoral laws."

        Before each electoral campaign the National Audiovisual Council (CNA), the official regulatory agency for the audio-visual market, issues decisions regarding the use of public media in campaigns. These decisions follow the electoral laws and include rules for access to public media. Art. 8, par. 3) and 4) from the decision issued before the 2012 electoral campaign strengthens the idea of neutrality toward political competitors:

        “3) In the informative shows, the presentation of campaign activities will be made exclusively by radio station staff. The broadcasting of materials related to campaign activities made or provided by electoral competitors and the use of interviews with candidates or representatives of electoral competitors is forbidden. 4) Candidates in public office can apAEPr in informative shows only in problems related to their position; in these situations radio stations have the obligation to ensure the neutrality and opinion pluralism.”

        Art. 3 of the same decision strengthens this idea:

        “Public and private radio posts are obliged to ensure the existence of an equitable, balanced and fair to all electoral competitors, adhering to the following principles: a) equity – all candidates must have the opportunity to become visible to the electorate; b) balance – in presenting campaign activities of electoral competitors; c) correctness – all competitors must benefit from objective and neutral treatment.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where there is an explicit ban on the use of state resources in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates. A YES is also earned where there are clearly defined exceptions, which are accessible to all actors equally.

        A MODERATE score is earned where an explicit ban exists but it only applies to one of the two actors, even though both can be elected. A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        A NO score is also earned where the law exists, but allows discretionary exceptions.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 regarding the financing of political parties’ activities and electoral campaigns. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 10 and 25, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        The CNA Decision no. 738/2012 – principles and rules regarding the electoral campaign – elections for the Chamber of Deputies and Senate through media audio-visual services (Decizia CNA nr. 738/2012 - principii si reguli de desfasurare a campaniei electorale - alegerea Camerei Deputatilor si a Senatului, prin intermediul serviciilor media audiovizuale), Published in the Official Gazette, Part I, no. 742 from 2 Nov. 2012, art. 8, http://www.avocatnet.ro/content/articles/id_31160/Decizia-CNA-nr-738-2012-principii-si-reguli-de-desfasurare-a-campaniei-electorale-alegerea-Camerei-Deputatilor-si-a-Senatului-prin-intermediul-serviciilor-media-audiovizuale.html

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        6
        Score
        0
        In practice, to what extent are no state resources used in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates' electoral campaigns?More about indicator

        There is extensive evidence indicating regular use of state resources in favor of certain political parties during electoral campaigns. Used resources are non-financial and both political analysts and party members acknowledged the existence of mechanisms through which they are used in favor of certain parties. Sergiu Miscoiu, political analyst, identifies clientelism as a major problem related to the use of state resources in favor of some political parties:

        “Strictly referring to public money, there is no information to confirm the hypothesis that certain parties receive favors. However, the informal side, related to large subsidies given to associations affiliated to political parties, is a different issue. All information indicate that all parties in government succeed through legal means to give money to circles of interests that are close to them. There are NGOs that are close to political parties and they receive state money for various types of projects. For example, in the case of the Social Democratic Party (PSD), the Institute of Social Democratic Studies ‘Ovidiu Sincai’ and three other NGOs that fall under this category. They gain preferential access to funds that are in particular allocated through ministers and Prime Minister Chancellery. And these funds are later used in connection with party activities. For example, if the Institute of Social Democratic Studies organizes a conference about the project to reduce the contributions to the public health system, a hot topic in Romania. Such an event clearly promotes the ideas of the government and the PSD (…) Most of the corruption scandals around the presidents of county councils (15 out of 41 presidents are investigated in the last year) are related to state resources use for the benefit of the party to which these presidents belonged. This was mainly indirect in the sense that county councils from Mehedinti, Bacau, Cluj, Arges (these are Romanian counties) or other counties provided companies preferential access to funds. These companies contributed with a substantial amount to the electoral campaign of the party to which the president belonged.”

        Mihail Chiru, research fellow at Median Research Center, confirms this point of view and provides another example:

        “Preferential contracts with companies financing electoral campaigns are often customary. I believe a well-known example is the one of the former president of county council Dambovita, Florin Popescu, who persuaded a catering company to donate for his political party, for the food bags given to voters as electoral bribe, in the exchange for later contracts from the council. It is a case under investigation by the National Anticorruption Directorate.”

        Dan Darabont, member in the executive committee of the main government party after the 2012 legislative elections (PSD)

        “On the one hand, a complete securitization of resources towards the electoral campaigns will lead to absurd restrictions that can block the functioning of state institutions. There are office holders either elected or appointed, who in the daily tasks of their jobs benefit from the existence of an infrastructure and general resources. It is hard to say to what extent these are used for the job or for their activities as party members during electoral campaigns. On the other hand, with respect to direct contributions the situation is clear and public money cannot be used illegally by political parties. And my example here is the recent statement of the National Liberal Party, in government until the beginning of this year, which complained that after the 2012 electoral campaign, although it was in government it ended up with debts, including the rent for its central office.”

        Anonymous, local leader in the Democrat Liberal Party, one of the main opposition forces, provide additional examples of the process:

        “State resources are used not only by parties in government, but mainly by parties with strong representation in local and county councils. Resources does not mean money in this case, but material resources like phones, rooms, buildings, vehicles, gas for transportation. Parliamentary parties with territorial coverage, who have a deputy in constituencies, can easily use resources to their advantage. For example, a deputy who recently changed party affiliation, received a cheap and well placed office belonging to the town hall; the party also organized its electoral campaign for European elections in that office. Also mayors have a lot of other resources that they can use, the classic example being the one of sending letters to all voters usually before elections. These letters include the achievements of the mayor, all this being propaganda and campaign, paid from public money.”

        There is a large number of news reports referring to the use of state funds in electoral campaigns and I have picked only two for illustrative purposes. The article on the website of B1TV (2013) explains how a PSD minister was in campaign to an event organized by the Town Hall of a village (the mayor is a PSD member). In his article, Merticariu (2014) explains how the mayor of Bacau (a city in the Northern part of the country) allocated 365,000 RON (approx.. 110,000 USD) for the printing of a book that will reach every family in the city. In the book the mayor apAEPrs next to high church officials, having the same message as in his 2012 electoral campaign and the same photos. A similar nook was used in the 2012 electoral campaign. The mayor, Romeo Stavarache, occupied position 9 on the PNL list for European elections in May 2014.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where there is no evidence of authorities using state resources in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates. A 100 is also earned where there are clearly defined exceptions and are equally accessible to all actors.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) documented evidence indicates occasional use of state resources in favor of or against political parties and individual candidates, or 2) clearly defined exceptions are not equally accessible to all actors.

        A 0 score is earned where documented evidence indicates regular use of state resources in favor of or against certain political parties and individual candidates.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014. 2. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014. 3. Dan Darabont, member in the executive committee, Social Democratic Party, 25 July 2014. 4. Anonymous, local leader, Liberal Democratic Party, 25 July 2014.

        Primary sources: B1TV, “PSD in electoral campaign on public money”, 23 May 2014, http://www.b1.ro/stiri/politica/psd-a-facut-campanie-electorala-pe-bani-publici-in-gorj-ministrul-mihnea-costoiu-a-fugit-de-jurnali-ti-in-biserica-video-83214.html Mircea Merticariu, “Electoral campaign with public money”, 16 May 2014, http://adevarul.ro/locale/bacau/foto-bacau-acasa-crestini-campanieelectorala-facuta-bani-publici-sutana-arhiepiscopiei-romanului-sibacaului-1_5376625f0d133766a8b755f8/index.html

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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        7
        Score
        YES
        In law, political parties and individual candidates have free or subsidized access to equitable air time for electoral campaigns?More about indicator

        Free access time is provided to electoral competitors in the legislative elections following a clear, transparent, and equitable mechanism. Art. 38 from the law regulating the national parliamentary elections presents this mechanism:

        “The political parties, political alliances, electoral alliances, organisations of citizens belonging to national minorities participating in the elections under the terms of the present title, and the independent candidates shall have free of charge access to the radio and television public services proportionally to the number of candidatures forwarded and remained final. Every radio and television public society shall take into consideration the number of candidatures forwarded by each electoral competitor within the geographical area covered by the respective radio or television station.”

        Regarding the presidential elections, art. 16 in the Law no. 370/2004 regulates the access to free air time:

        “(1) Access to the public radio and television services shall be equal and free to all the candidates running for the office of President of Romania. (2) The timetable for the electoral campaign and air time distribution in order to ensure equal and free access of candidates to public radio and television services shall be established, after the term for candidacy submittal has ended, by the reunited permanent bureaus of the two Chambers of the Parliament, together with the representatives of public radio and television services, with the participation of the candidates.”

        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. General provisions on free access time are regulated by Broadcasting act (Law no. 504/2002). The National Audiovisual Council (CNA) adopts specific media regulations on campaign coverage before each election. Access to radio and television public services in electoral campaigns is granted according art. 29 par. 1 (Law no. 334/2006): “access to the public radio and television services, as well as to the special electoral display boards is guaranteed during the electoral campaigns and it is provided according to the provisions of the electoral legislation”.

        Broadcasting act (Law no. 504/2002), available at: http://www.cna.ro/Legea-audiovizualului-nr-504-din,6023.html; Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), updated version available at: http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/articole-legislatie/item-2-legislatie/;

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) free or subsidized access to air time for electoral campaigns is granted in a transparent, equitable way, and 2) there are clearly defined eligibility criteria.

        A MODERATE score is earned where free or subsidized access to air time for electoral campaigns is granted in a transparent, equitable way, but eligibility criteria are not clearly defined.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 35/2008 for the election to the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate (version updated by the Permanent Electoral Authority until 10 September 2012) (Legea nr. 35/2008 pentru alegerea Camerei Deputa?ilor ?i a Senatului (variant? actualizat? de Autoritatea Electoral? Permanent? pân? la data de 10.09.2012)), Art. 38, http://www.becparlamentare2012.ro/DOCUMENTE/Legislatie/legea%2035%20(1).pdf

        Law no. 370/2004 on the election of the President of Romania, art. 16 (see attachment)

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        8
        Score
        100
        In practice, to what extent is free or subsidized access to air time provided in a transparent, equitable way to political parties and individual candidates for electoral campaigns?More about indicator

        Free or subsidized air time is clearly regulated and legal provisions are applied in a transparent and equitable way. Emilia Sercan, senior editor at cursdeguvernante.ro, with experience in investigation of finance for political parties says:

        “If air time provided by private radio and televisions has some exceptions from the legal framework, the public radio and televisions always respects the formal aspects. This is one reason for which I saw representatives of national minorities on public television, while they are never on private televisions. I saw representatives of niche parties who have very low electoral support. Their presence was possible because the electoral law was fully respected by television.”

        Dan Darabont, member of the PSD (main government party) executive committee, strengthened the idea that access to public air time is transparent and equitable, but complained that private media is not obliged to provide any kind of free and equal access. Indeed, according to him, private media is often owned by political party leaders, and is guided either by partisanship or the private interests of their owners. For example, Dan Diaconescu, the leader of the People's Party, owns the stations DDTV and OTV, which covered his party very extensively in the 2012 elections, giving it an advantage. A local leader of the PDL (an opposition party) said that he did not know the extent to which free access is provided but he did not recall any problems in the recent years. Tiberiu Farcas, editor at clujulcultural.ro, with investigation experience on party financing, said that there were some exceptions at public radio regarding the access to free time but they were minor and few. He added that in recent electoral campaigns these problems disapAEPred but in previous elections small parties were disadvantaged.

        The secondary source mentioned in the sources field illustrates the extent to which legal provisions are applied in practice. It is the only news report available about recent problems with air time. During the electoral campaign for the most recent presidential elections (2009), two independent candidates petitioned the Constitutional Court regarding the lack of access to free time. The Court admitted their request and asked the public radio and televisions to allocate air time to the two candidates.

        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. Alexandra Iancu, political scientist and analyst, concludes: “free and subsidized airtimes seem to be transparently and equitably allocated. Nevertheless, the last parliamentary race in 2012 suggests that precise and extensive regulations do not necessarily entail equitable outcomes. In 2012, the public television organized only few primetime electoral debates. These shows were equitable in terms of party/candidate representation. Contrariwise, the Active-watch monitoring for 9.11-7.12.2012 indicate a highly unbalanced portray of political leaders during the campaign due to the overlapping public functions of the candidates racing for a parliamentary seat. During the 2012 elections, Victor Ponta, the Prime minister and the leader of the USL coalition (also a party candidate) benefited from 60 public appearances, Crin Antonescu the other leader of USL had 25 public appearances, whereas opposition leaders were rather underrepresented: Vasile Blaga (leader of PDL/ARD)- 9, Mihai Razvan Ungureanu 13 (FC, ARD), Emil Boc (PDL/ARD)-8, Adrian Videanu (PDL-ARD)-8. Furthermore, one month prior to the official start of the presidential campaign, the Romanian Television Director, Stelian Tanase, accused increasing political pressures from the governing parties on the public channel, including requests concerning the dismissal of public television journalists. According to Tanase, the presence of the government spokesperson within the Romanian’s television Board contributed to the politicization of the public television”. The public statements produced, for the time being, direct outcomes (as the governmental spokesperson had to resign from the Television Board), but concerns remain about the editorial independence of the public television channels”.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) free or subsidized access to media advertising is always provided in a transparent and equitable way, and 2) the defined eligibility criteria are applied consistently.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) free or subsidized access to media advertising is usually provided in a transparent and equitable way, but exceptions exist, or 2) the eligibility criteria are not always applied.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) there's rarely free or subsidized access to air time for political campaign, and 2) access exists but is not provided in a transparent, equitable way.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Emilia Sercan, senior editor, cursdeguvernare.ro, 28 July 2014. 2. Tiberiu Farcas, editor, clujulcultural.ro, 28 July 2014. 3. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014. 4. Dan Darabont, member in the executive committee, Social Democratic Party, 25 July 2014. 5. Anonymous, local leader, Liberal Democratic Party, 25 July 2014.

        Secondary sources: Ziare.com, Two candidates in presidential elections gained access to free time through the decision of the Constitutional Court, 4 Nov. 2009, http://www.ziare.com/alegeri/alegeri-prezidentiale-2009/doi-candidati-la-presedintie-au-obtinut-timpi-de-antena-prin-decizia-ccr-941461

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September 2014.

        OCSE (2013), Romania, Parliamentary Elections, 9 December 2012: Final Report, available at: http://www.osce.org/odihr/98757

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    Contribution and Expenditure Restrictions

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      General Rules on Electoral Campaign Contributions
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        9
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        YES
        In law, cash contributions are banned.More about indicator

        All financial contributions, to both parties and candidates (though most provisions refer explicitly only to parties) must be made via the banking system, as specified in the law on party financing (law 334/2006 applies to all national elections):

        Art. 3, par. 4: “The collection and payment operations of a political party shall be carried out through bank accounts in RON and in foreign currency opened with banks seated in Romania, according to the lawful provisions.”

        While cash contributions are not explicitly banned in the text of the law, the paragraph above and the absence of references to cash in the text of the law (it speaks only about donations and revenues that follow the procedure quoted above) indicate that cash contribution are not allowed. In practice, it is likely to have the regular membership fees paid in cash because for most parties the monthly value is 2-3 USD. But this is not specified in the law and the section about fees refers solely to their limits.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where cash contributions are banned and all financial contributions must be made via the banking system.

        A MODERATE score is earned where cash contributions are allowed up to a maximum limit, regardless of the limit.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 3, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

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        10
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        YES
        In law, there is a ban on anonymous contributions.More about indicator

        Law 334/2006 applies to funding in all national elections, and to both parties and candidates. It is quite explicit in this sense. Art. 7 explains that anonymous donations are not possible and stipulates a series of check about the identity of the donor. Small donations may remain technically confidential, but parties must record the identity of all donors upon receipt of their money, and disclose that information when required by state authorities.

        “(1) Upon receiving a donation, the identity of the donor shall be mandatorily checked and registered, irrespective of the public or confidential character of the same. (2) Upon the donor’s written request, its identity remains confidential if the donation does not exceed annually 10 minimum gross salaries at the country level. (3) The total amount received by a political party as confidential donations cannot exceed the equivalent of 0.0006% of the income stipulated by the state budget for the year in case.”

        Art. 8 of the same law requires the registration of all donations with an identifiable source even for those donations in goods or services. Consequently, anonymous donations are not allowed:

        “(1) All donations shall be adequately registered in accounting records, specifying the date when they were made and other information which should allow the identification of the financing sources. (2) Any donation in goods or services provided free of charge shall be reflected in the accounting records at their fair value established according to the lawful provisions.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where the law stipulates that anonymous contributions are banned.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the ban exists, but it applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates). A MODERATE score is also earned where small anonymous donations are allowed up to a maximum threshold equal to or less than the equivalent to US$300.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 7 and 8, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

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        11
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        YES
        In law, in-kind donations to political parties and individual candidates must be reported.More about indicator

        According to Law 334/2006 (applicable to funding in all national level elections), in-kind donations must be reported. In this sense, articles 5, 6, 8 and 9 are very clear and stipulate the identification of both natural and legal persons. They also specify what counts and what is exempted as donation:

        Art. 5, par. 8: “The fair value of the movable and immovable assets donated to the party, as well as of the services provided to the same free of charge shall be included in the value of the donations, according to the limitations stipulated under paragraphs 1-5.”

        Art. 6: “Price discounts exceeding 20% of the value of the goods or services offered to political parties and independent candidates shall be deemed as donations and shall be registered separately in the accounting records of the party or independent candidate in case, according to the standards issued by the Ministry of Public Finances.”

        Art. 8: “(2) Any donation in goods or services provided free of charge shall be reflected in the accounting records at their fair value established according to the lawful provisions. (3) The activities performed voluntarily according to the lawful provisions shall not be deemed as donations.”

        Art. 9: “(1) Political parties shall publish in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I the list of natural and legal persons who during a financial year made donations whose cumulated value exceeds 10 minimum gross base salaries at the country level, as well as the total amount of the confidential donations received by 31 March of the following year. (2) The list indicated under paragraph 1 shall include the following elements: a) for natural persons: last name and first name of the party member, personal identification number, citizenship, amount, type of donation and date when it was made; b) for legal persons: name, registered office, nationality, unique registration code, amount, type of donation and the date when it was made.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where all in-kind donations must be reported to the oversight authority.

        A MODERATE score is also earned if the requirement to report such information exists, but applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 5, 6, 8 and 9, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/articole-legislatie/item-2-legislatie/

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        12
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        NO
        In law, loans to political parties and individual candidates must be reported.More about indicator

        No such law exists and the news report mentioned in the sources strengthens this idea. According to Pirvu (2013) the USL government (PSD + PNL) elaborated a law proposal to complement the existing framework, i.e. Law no. 334/2006. According to this proposal, political parties will be able to make loans for their electoral campaign. Muhulet, the AEP vice-president, mentioned this proposal and explained that it includes the Group of State Against Corruption (GRECO) recommendations, which were made in a 2010 report addressing the issue of corruption in Romania. GRECO suggested the clear regulation of loans in the law (see the GRECO report). The law project is under debate at parliamentary committees, but its adoption became difficult after the disintegration of the USL (PNL left the government coalition at the beginning of this year).


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. No regulations mandate that parties and candidates report loans that they receive.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where all loans must be reported to the oversight authority.

        A MODERATE score is earned where loans must be reported, but the requirement applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Chapter 3 (in particular art. 20), http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        L. Pirvu, “USL Law Proposal: Political parties would be able to make financial loans for electoral campaigns”, 26 September 2013, http://www.hotnews.ro/stiri-politic-15655833-proiect-lege-partidele-politice-putea-faca-imprumuturi-financiare-pentru-campaniile-electorale.htm

        Interview: Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014.

        Secondary source: GRECO, “Evaluation Report on Romania on Incriminations (ETS 173 and 191, GPC 2)”, 3 December 2010, http://www.coe.int/t/dghl/monitoring/greco/evaluations/round3/GrecoEval3(2010)1RomaniaOne_EN.pdf

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      Limits on Contributions and Expenditures during Electoral Campaign Periods
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        13
        Score
        YES
        In law, contributions from individuals are limited to a maximum amount.More about indicator

        According to Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) individuals may not contribute more than a maximum amount. Article 5, paragraphs 1) and 2) refer to the maximum amount that political parties can receive from both natural and legal persons:

        “(1) The donations received by a political party during a financial year cannot exceed 0.025% of the income stipulated in the state budget for the year in case. (2) During the financial year when local general elections, parliamentary elections, elections for the European Parliament or elections of the Romanian president are organized, the cap will be 0.050% of the income stipulated in the state budget for the year in case.

        Paragraphs 3)-6) of the same article provide details about the limits to contributions from natural or legal persons. The latter can be both individuals with legal status and companies:

        “(3) The donations received from a natural person during one year can amount up to 200 minimum gross base salaries at the country level, as of 1 January of the year in case. (4) The donations received from a legal person during one year can amount up to 500 minimum gross base salaries at the country level, as of 1 January of the year in case. (5) The total amount of the donations made by legal persons directly or indirectly controlled by another person or group of natural or legal persons cannot exceed the limitations stipulated under paragraphs 3 and 4. (6) The fair value of the movable and immovable assets donated to the party, as well as of the services provided to the same free of charge shall be included in the value of the donations, according to the limitations stipulated under paragraphs 1-4.”

        In addition, the legal framework establishes that the candidates proposed for election by a political party can finance electoral propaganda activities only through the respective political party (Art. 31, par. 1). Moreover, the 4th paragraph of the same article specifies that “the amounts of money received by the candidates proposed for election by a political party shall be deemed as donations and fall under the incidence of the provisions hereof”. Note that the above-mentioned limitations to contributions from individuals deal with parties as well as (party– or independent) candidates.

        According to Eurostat (see sources) the minimum gross base salary at 1 January 2014 in Romania was 191 € (approx. 260 USD).

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) individuals may not contribute more than a maximum amount established by the law.

        A MODERATE score is earned where a maximum amount exists, but it applies only to contributions for one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates). A MODERATE score is also earned where individuals are forbidden from making any contribution.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Chapter 3, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Eurostat,”Minimum Wage Statistics, last accessed at 10 August 2014, http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/statisticsexplained/index.php/Minimumwage_statistics

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        14
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        YES
        In law, contributions from corporations are limited to a maximum amount.More about indicator

        According to Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) individuals may not contribute more than a maximum amount. Article 5, paragraphs 1) and 2) refer to the maximum amount that political parties can receive from both natural and legal persons:

        “(1) The donations received by a political party during a financial year cannot exceed 0.025% of the income stipulated in the state budget for the year in case. (2) During the financial year when local general elections, parliamentary elections, elections for the European Parliament or elections of the Romanian president are organized, the cap will be 0.050% of the income stipulated in the state budget for the year in case.

        Paragraphs 4)-6) of the same article provide details about the limits to contributions from legal persons. These are both individuals with legal status and companies:

        “(4) The donations received from a legal person during one year can amount up to 500 minimum gross base salaries at the country level, as of 1 January of the year in case. (5) The total amount of the donations made by legal persons directly or indirectly controlled by another person or group of natural or legal persons cannot exceed the limitations stipulated under paragraphs 3 and 4. (6) The fair value of the movable and immovable assets donated to the party, as well as of the services provided to the same free of charge shall be included in the value of the donations, according to the limitations stipulated under paragraphs 1-4.”

        The above-mentioned limitations to contributions deal with parties as well as (party– or independent) candidates.

        According to Eurostat (see sources) the minimum gross base salary at 1 January 2014 in Romania was 191 € (approx. 260 USD).

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) corporations may not contribute more than a maximum amount established by the law.

        A MODERATE score is earned where a maximum amount or ban exists, but it applies only to contributions for one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates). A MODERATE score is also earned where corporations are forbidden from making any contribution.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 5, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Eurostat,”Minimum Wage Statistics, last accessed at 10 August 2014, http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/statisticsexplained/index.php/Minimumwage_statistics

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        15
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        YES
        In law, contributions from foreign sources are banned.More about indicator

        Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) explicitly stipulates that political parties and individual candidates cannot receive contributions from foreign sources. According to Art. 11, par. 1):

        “Donations from other states or foreign organizations, as well as from foreign natural or legal persons are forbidden.”

        Art. 25, par. 2) explicitly bans the donations from foreign associations:

        “The financing by any means of the electoral campaign of a party, alliance of the same or of an independent candidate by trade unions, religious cults, foreign associations and foundations is forbidden.”

        Art. 11, par. 2) speaks about some exceptions outside the electoral purpose of parties. Donations in the form of material goods used for political activity outside campaigns are permitted. This paragraph adds that propaganda material for the use during the European elections is allowed (this does not include financial contributions):

        “Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph 1, donations consisting of material goods necessary for the political activity but which are not electoral propaganda materials, received from international political organizations to which the respective party is affiliated or from political parties or political organizations collaborating with the party in case are permitted. Propaganda materials that are to be used only during the electoral campaign for the election of the Romania's representatives to the European Parliament are also permitted.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where it is forbidden for political parties and individual candidates to receive contributions (financial or in-kind) from foreign sources.

        A MODERATE score is earned where: 1) the ban exists but it applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates), or 2) contributions from foreign sources are allowed to a maximum amount.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 11 and 25, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

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        YES
        In law, contributions from third-party actors (unions, foundations, think tanks, political action committees, etc.) are limited to a maximum amount or banned.More about indicator

        Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) forbids donations from trade unions and religious cults. According to Art 10, par 3):

        “Donations made by a trade union or any religious cult, irrespective of their nature, are strictly forbidden.”

        The same idea is repeated in Art. 25, par. 2): “The financing by any means of the electoral campaign of a party, alliance of the same or of an independent candidate by trade unions, religious cults, foreign associations and foundations is forbidden.”

        At the same time, Art. 13, par. 1) and 2) stipulate that contributions from organizations affiliated to political parties are limited to maximum contributions:

        “(1) If a party is associated, according to the lawful provisions, to an apolitical organization, the financial contribution of the latter to the respective form of association cannot exceed during one financial year the value of 500 minimum gross base salaries at the country level, as of 1 January of the year in case. (2) The total financial contribution for forms of association with apolitical organizations cannot exceed during one year the equivalent of 0.006% of the income stipulated in the state budget for the year in case.”

        According to Eurostat (see sources) the minimum gross base salary at 1 January 2014 in Romania was 191 € (approx. 260 USD).

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) third-party actors may not contribute more than a maximum amount established by the law, or 2) are forbidden from making any contribution.

        A MODERATE score is earned where: 1) the maximum amount or ban exists only for the majority of third-party actors, but not all, or 2) the maximum amount or ban exists, but applies only to contributions for either political parties or individual candidates.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 10, 13 and 25, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Eurostat,”Minimum Wage Statistics, last accessed at 10 August 2014, http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/statisticsexplained/index.php/Minimumwage_statistics

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        17
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        YES
        In law, election campaign spending by political parties and individual candidates is limited to a maximum amount.More about indicator

        Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) stipulates maximum expense limits. These are calculated at the level of candidates and they differ from election to election. As Art. 30, par. 1) states, the amounts should be summed up to give the maximum expenses for a political party:

        “(1) The maximum limit of the expenses to be incurred by a political party or by a political or electoral alliance during each electoral campaign shall be calculated by adding up the maximum values permitted by law for each candidate proposed for election. (2) At central level, in addition to the maximum expense limits admitted for each candidate, the party can spend maximum 50 minimum gross base salaries at country level for each candidate; (3) The maximum values permitted for each candidate shall be established according to the minimum gross base salary at the country level on 1 January of the electoral year in case, as follows: a) 350 minimum gross base salaries at the country level for each candidate for the position of Deputy; b) 500 minimum gross base salaries at the country level for each candidate for the position of Senator; c) 2,500 minimum gross base salaries at the country level for each candidate for the position of Romania’s representative in the European Parliament; (4) The maximum limits of expenses stipulated under paragraph 2 shall also apply for independent candidates.”

        Art. 33, par. 1) stipulates the maximum expense limits for presidential elections:

        “The maximum limit of the expenses that can be incurred by a party, a political alliance or an independent candidate during an electoral campaign for the election of Romania’s president is 25,000 minimum gross base salaries at the country level.”

        According to Eurostat (see sources) the minimum gross base salary at 1 January 2014 iN Romania was 191 € (approx. 260 USD).

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where it is forbidden for political parties and individual candidates to spend more than a certain amount in a political campaign.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the maximum amount exists, but it applies only to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 30 and 33, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Eurostat, ”Minimum Wage Statistics, last accessed at 10 August 2014, http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/statisticsexplained/index.php/Minimumwage_statistics

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        Open Question: Do the national laws regulating political finance also apply to sub-national units? If not, to what extent do sub-national units have laws regulating political finance?More about indicator

        National laws regulating political finance also apply to sub-national units.

        Law 334/2006 is applicable to sub-national campaigns. There are many articles that refer explicitly to sub-national levels. Using the example of the previous indicator, maximum expense limits apply to national legislative elections, and also to elections of county counselors, local counselors (in cities, towns and villages of different size and mayor – Art. 30, par. d)-k).

        Similarly, during financial years when general elections are scheduled, specific references to the local level are made (e.g. art 5, par. 2 – increased caps for donations received by a political party during the financial year when local general elections are organized). Note also that the subvention from the state budget is partially granted (25% of the annual budget) on the criteria of the number of votes obtained at the local elections.

        Sergiu Miscoiu, political scientist and analyst, concurs: “There are no separate laws, there a single major law that targets all levels. There is no sub-national law on party financing”. Arpad Todor, electoral expert from Pro Democracy Association, argued that the law had a bottom-up logic (from local to national level) and was formulated at the candidate level. Consequently, is is applicable in all electoral competitions.

        Scoring Criteria

        Please describe the applicability of national political finance regulations at the sub-national level, being sure to answer: 1) whether national laws are applicable to sub-national campaigns; 2) if not, to what extent do sub-national units have similar laws regulating political finance; and 3) whether there are any reports of problems arising from gaps in this framework.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014. 2. Arpad Todor, electoral expert, Pro Democracy Association, 24 July 2014.

        Primary source Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 30, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

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        Open Question: What are the predominant sources of funding for electoral campaigns?More about indicator

        The predominant source of funding for electoral campaigns is private funding, mainly in the form of donations.

        Arpad Todor, electoral expert from Pro Democracy Association, says:

        “From what I have seen until now donations were the main source followed by public funding. Private money is definitely much more also because a large part of the public money is used for administrative or maintenance costs. Donations are on the first place and then the in-kind donationsare also important. Consider the current scandal with frozen chicken. In this particular case, a Senator, vice-president of Popular Movement Party, asked a businessman to deliver a number of frozen chickens to a certain location. This is a good example of how half of the illegal private financing works and the other part of illegal financing are the ones used for vote-buying (cash for votes).”

        Mihail Chiru, research fellow at Median Research Center, an NGO dealing with political parties confirms: “The main sources of funding are the private donations and to much less extent what comes from the state and from membership fees. And this does not happen only during electoral campaigns, but in the entire electoral cycle. There is an important part of donations coming from party members appointed in office and who have high salaries such as MEPs. Private donations are the main source also because the public funding is very low in Romania compared to other countries.” Clara Volintiru, political scientist with activity in the field of clientelism and party financing in Romania, also emphasizes the predominance of private funding: “From everything I have analyzed until now in terms of data it is very obvious that the primary source of funding is private”.

        The consensus among interviewees regarding private funding as predominant source of financing is confirmed when comparing public and private revenues of political party. For illustrative purposes, the PDL (an opposition party) received in 2013 only from donations 2,153,998 RON ($649, 079 USD) and the total amount of private funding was 5,474,992 RON ($1, 649, 818 USD) (see sources). In contrast, in July 2014, the monthly public financing for the same party was 88,824 RON ($26, 766 USD). Bidila (2014) presents a summary of the AEP report after their controls to the major political parties. According to this report 51% of total income is from private donations, while only 15% is from state subsidies. Membership fees are 24% of the total income but the amounts in this category can hide private donations (businessmen who become party members and make donations in the form of large fees).


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - Still, Alexandra Iancu, political scientist and analyst, explains: “Although private donations constitute the main financial resources for political parties, there are important variations in the party-finance structure. First, private donations tend to increase in the pre-electoral and electoral years (and decrease substantially after the elections). This downfall in the private support is often correlated with the party lack of political/electoral success. The official figures on donations usually illustrate both the sponsorship mobilization during elections and candidates’ “compulsory” (but oftentimes hidden) contributions to the party. Another pattern in the party finance concerns the divide between mainstream parties, which tend to rely more on donations, and marginal parties which remain highly dependent on state subsidies (this is rather the case of ‘old’ parties in decline)”. In addition, Alexandra Iancu explained: “By the same token, parliamentary parties, although highly dependent on complementary private funding during the electoral competitions, still declare high income levels directly dependent on the collection of membership fees. Although party membership figures are declining, the high level of membership fees revenues are the direct result of the progressive membership contributions, a system set within all major parties (party officials and public office representatives are expected to pay considerable sums as membership dues). The UDMR is the only exception to the rule- the idiosyncratic legal statute of this ethnic based party allows the Union to rely mainly on state subventions (higher in than in the case of the parliamentary parties’ state subsidies)”.

        Scoring Criteria

        Please describe the important sources of funding for electoral campaigns, being sure to answer: 1) where does the preponderance of funding come from - public, individual, corporate, or other; 2) to what extent do individual candidates self-finance; and 3) do political parties have other methods of generating campaign funds, such as owning their own businesses or trusts.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Arpad Todor, electoral expert, Pro Democracy Association, 24 July 2014. 2. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014. 3. Clara Volintiru, PhD Candidate, London School of Economics and Political Science, 25 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Official Gazette, “The total amount of private financing for political parties in 2013 – Democrat Liberal Party”, last accessed 26 July 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Partidul-Democrat-Liberal.pdf AEP, “Total state subsidies July 2014”, last accessed 30 July 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/PAGINA-TOTAL-SUBVENTIE-LUNA-IULIE-2014_SITE1-EX.pdf Sergiu Bidila, “Where do political parties get the white money from – the AEP Statistics”, paginadepolitica.ro, 2 April 2014, http://www.paginadepolitica.ro/de-unde-au-partidele-bani-albi-statistica-aep/

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September 2014.

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        Open Question: Have there been documented instances of violations of contribution or expenditure limits or any of the laws mentioned above (Section 2)?More about indicator

        There are a number of workarounds that parties employ to subvert expenditure limits and political finance legislation.

        The expenditure limits in particular are problematic. This has been pointed out explicitly in two of the interviews conducted. Clara Volintiru, political scientist with activity in the field of clientelism and party financing in Romania, says:

        “Yes, from what I have seen in the reported data there are political parties that did not figure out that maximum expense limits were exceeded – a thing that happens, not very frequent, but it happens. There are some enthusiast donors and other collectors equally enthusiastic who do not figure out that the limits were exceeded. Apart from this, there are more cases in which political parties bypass the limit by asking donors to make successive donations. This is an issue quite difficult to observe because there are ways to hide such bypassing efforts. For example, one company can have an entry with its name, while another entry can have a SC (commercial society) in front and thus alphabetically they apAEPr in different places. Apart from limits on donations, there may be also problems with the nature of donors. In the cases of the PDL and PNL I noticed that investment funds are among their donors. I suspect that contributors to those funds are likely to be incompatible with the legal provisions (e.g. foreign associations). But this is difficult to document these linkages.”

        Emilia Sercan, senior editor at cursdeguvernare.ro concurs, saying that many parties elude maximum limits by using financial tricks:

        ”In the investigation conducted for the 2008 parliamentary elections I saw many young people on the list of donors. They were not below 18 years old because minors are not allow to donate, but I found many young people between 18 and 23 years old donating money. I took this age interval because this is the moment when they are not financially independent, they are still students and dependent on their parents. One can easily question the provenance of such money. Overall, political elites try to form an image of legality to donations made to their parties using intermediaries. The latter, if carefully investigated, are unlikely to justify their income. And this is an issue I investigated closely in 2009 when I found that 100 politicians could not justify the donations they made. Their income from the wealth statement (publicly available) was much lower than the donations they made.”

        In a recent news report, Marian (2014) presents the recent behavior of a politician who follows what Emilia Sercan described in her interview. One deputy, leader of one PSD county organization, had a declared income of 21,760 RON ($6, 557 USD) in 2012 but donated 33,000 RON ($9, 944 USD) to the PSD. In addition, he had to pay bank credits with a value higher than 180,000 € ($240, 935 USD). An article from 2010 reports that two businessmen donated in 2009 to the PSD a total amount of 520,000 RON ($156, 723 USD) that exceeded by 280,000 RON ($84, 3489 USD) the maximum limit (this is in line with what Clara Volintiru said about generous donors who did not acknowledge that they exceed the limit).


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - Cristian Preda, Romanian MEP (EEP Group), shares this opinion: “parties and candidates spend much more than what is officially declared. One of the most delicate issue in party financial reports are in-kind donations, rather difficult to assess. Electoral campaigns are rather very expensive, well above the limits established by the law. Undeclared donations are used to pay for manufacturing of electoral propaganda materials or buying access to television services. A participation in a TV show (private networks) can cost up to 15.000€. In this case, the participation of the candidate is negotiated by specialized PR companies (the candidate’s PR company and the PR company linked to the TV presenter). Most of the time this is a “private business” with money paid in cash”.

        These pervasive grey zones explain the strong differences between the official campaign expenditures and the approximate costs evaluated by specialized NGOs. The most recent presidential elections (2009) provides strong empirical evidences. According to APD report, the campaigns of the first 2 candidates had an estimated cost of 3018224 RON ($884,116 -Traian B?sescu) and 2808112 RON ($822,569 - Mircea Geoan?). The declared costs for the same two candidates were: 1318639 RON ($386263 - Traian B?sescu) and 1393910 RON($408,312 - Mircea Geoan?).

        Scoring Criteria

        Please list and describe all documented instances of: 1) violation of contribution limits, 2) violation of expenditure limits, and 3) financial contributions that circumvent the regulatory framework. The objective of this question is to learn more about the local context, so please explain the cases in as much detail as relevant.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Clara Volintiru, PhD Candidate, London School of Economics and Political Science, 25 July 2014. 2. Emilia Sercan, senior editor, cursdeguvernare.ro, 28 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Mircea Marian, “Deputy Ioan Arsene modest income but high donations to PSD”, Evenimentul zilei, 15 May 2014, http://www.evz.ro/deputatul-ionel-arsene-venit-modest-dar-donatii-consistente-la-psd.html

        Secondary sources: Realitatea.net, “The Negoita brothers made illegal donations to the party that should be confiscated by the state”, 5 April 2010, http://www.realitatea.net/fratii-negoita-donatii-ilegale-la-partid-care-trebuie-confiscate-de-stat_707725.html

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Cristian Preda, Professor of Political Science, Romanian MEP (EEP Group), 19 September 2014.

        ProDemocratia (2012), Prezidentiale 2009 - Raport de observare a alegerilor pentru Presedintele Romaniei din 2009, Bucharest, available at: available at http://www.apd.ro/publicatie.php?id=71

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    Reporting and Public Disclosure

    More about category
    composite
    48
    • expand button!
      Reporting Requirements to the Oversight Entity
      More about category
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        21
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, political parties and individual candidates report itemized contributions and expenditures both during and outside electoral campaign periods.More about indicator

        Both candidates and parties, in law, must submit financial reports during campaigns, but only parties must report financial informaton outside of campaign periods. Each political party has to hire a financial agent who has the task to keep detailed records both outside and during the electoral campaign. According to Art. 26, par. 4, from law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections), the prerogatives of the financial agent are: a) to keep a record of the income received for the electoral campaign, of the transfers of other funds from the income obtained outside the electoral period and of the expenses made for the electoral campaign; b) to check the lawfulness of the financial operations executed during the electoral campaign and the compliance with the provisions regarding the donations received during the electoral campaign; c) to submit to the Permanent Electoral Authority a report on the compliance with the lawful terms regarding the financing of political parties during an electoral campaign.

        Income and expenditures during the electoral campaign are regulated though Art. 38, par. 1) “Within 15 days from the publication of the election result, the financial agent shall submit to the Permanent Electoral Authority a detailed report on the electoral income and expenses of each political party or independent candidate.”

        Only political parties are required to submit reports outside of electoral campaigns. Individual candidates are not obliged to do so. For parties, all income and expenditures outside the electoral campaign should be included in the annual report submitted to the AEP, but individual candidates do not submit reports outside of the electoral period. In this sense, Art 12, par. 3) stipulates that “Political parties shall publish in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I, the total value of the income obtained from other sources, by 31 March of the following year.”

        The itemization of these reports is detailed in several articles: Art. 13, par. 4): “Political parties shall publish in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I, the total value of the amounts that represent the object of paragraph 1, by 31 March of the following year.”

        Art 4, par. 4): “Political parties shall publish in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I, the total amount of the income from membership fees by 31 March of the following year, as well as the list of party members that paid in one year membership fees whose cumulated value exceeds 10 minimum gross salaries at the country level.”

        Art. 8, par.1): ” All donations shall be adequately registered in accounting records, specifying the date where they were made and other information which should allow the identification of the financing sources”.

        Art. 9, par. 1): “Political parties shall publish in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I the list of natural and legal persons who during a financial year made donations whose cumulated value exceeds 10 minimum gross base salaries at the country level, as well as the total amount of the confidential donations received by 31 March of the following year.”

        Art. 29, par. 4): “The political parties and alliances, as well as the independent candidates shall state to the Permanent Electoral Authority, through their financial agent, the number of electoral propaganda materials produced, according to categories.”

        Art. 5, par. 2) from the Methodological norms for the application of Law 334/2006 strengthens the idea that income and expenditures must be reported both outside and during the electoral campaign, in an itemized way: “The income and expenditures must be developed to meet the accounting and reporting requests for every electoral or current activity.” Art. 6 further develops the differences between items, e.g. par. 4) says that donations from natural persons are separately reported.

        Art. 6-15 further develops the differences between items. Moreover, in compliance with the Government Decision no. 749/2007, political parties’ accounts have to comply with the regulations for non-profit legal persons (Order of the Ministry of Economy and Finance no. 1969/2007 of the Ministry of Finance), to keep a double entry accounting and to prepare annual financial statements. Following recommendations issued in a Greco 2010 Report, the AEP issued Instruction no.1/2012 whose art. 2 clarifies the applicability of the Order of the Ministry of Economy and Finance no.1969/2007 to political finance reporting. In relation to the way territorial units keep their accounts, art 2 (Instructions 2012) explains: (1) Territorial organizations of political parties and structures of political parties referred to in art. 4. par. 4 of Law no. 14/2003 on political parties, as amended and supplemented, organize and lead their own accounts to trial balance level without preparing annual financial statements. (2) Political parties organize and lead the accounting so that necessary information regarding the activity of regional organizations and structures referred to in par. 1 shall be available.” Note that standardized format for the various reports are available on the AEP’s website (http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/alte-materiale/).

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where political parties and individual candidates are required to report itemized contributions and expenditures to the oversight authority, both during and outside electoral campaign periods.

        A MODERATE score is earned where: 1) the requirement applies for itemized contributions, but not for itemized expenditures, or 2) it applies only during the electoral campaign but not outside it. A MODERATE score is also earned where the requirement exists, but it only applies to one actor (whether political parties and individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 4, 9, 13, 26, 29 and 38, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Methodological norms for the application of Law 334/2006, document available in the consolidated form according to the last change from 04/10/2008, art. 5 and 6, http://lege5.ro/en/Gratuit/geydomrxgq/norma-metodologica-de-aplicare-a-legii-nr-334-2006-privind-finantarea-activitatii-partidelor-politice-si-a-campaniilor-electorale-din-11072007

        Secondary source: GRECO, “Evaluation Report on Romania on Incriminations (ETS 173 and 191, GPC 2)”, 3 December 2010, http://www.coe.int/t/dghl/monitoring/greco/evaluations/round3/GrecoEval3(2010)1RomaniaOne_EN.pdf

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        22
        Score
        YES
        In law, political parties and individual candidates are required to report their financial information on a monthly basis during the electoral campaign.More about indicator

        In Romania the electoral campaign lasts one month both in the legislative and presidential elections. According to Art. 7, par. 2, of Law 35/2008 for legislative elections "The electoral campaign shall begin 30 days prior to the day of vote, and shall end 24 hours before the moment of the beginning of voting". Art. 15, par. 1, from law 370/2004 for the election of president stipulates: “The electoral campaign and the progress of the elections for the office of President of Romania shall take place under the provisions of the law on the elections for the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate, unless otherwise stipulated in the present section”. As no other provisions accompany this text, the duration of campaign stipulated by Law 35/2008 applies as well to the president.

        Income and expenditures during the electoral campaign are regulated though Art. 38, par. 1) from Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections: “Within 15 days from the publication of the election result, the financial agent shall submit to the Permanent Electoral Authority a detailed report on the electoral income and expenses of each political party or independent candidate.” The reporting period is thus monthly.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - Similar instructions on accountancy regulations are explained in the Government Decision no. 749/2007, chapter 4. All in all, Romanian parties and candidates have to submit their financial statements to the AEP on annual basis, subsequently published on the AEP’s website, an element indispensable for the overall transparency of political parties and the access to the information to the general public. Moreover, within 15 days from the publication of the election result, the financial agent has to submit a detailed report on the electoral income and expenses of each political party or independent candidate.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where political parties and individual candidates must report monthly their financial information to the oversight authority during the electoral campaign.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the requirement exists on a quarterly basis. A MODERATE score is also earned where the requirement only applies to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Chapter 3 (in particular art. 38), http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Law no. 35/2008 Law no. 35/2008 for the election to the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate (version updated by the Permanent Electoral Authority until 10 September 2012) (Legea nr. 35/2008 pentru alegerea Camerei Deputa?ilor ?i a Senatului (variant? actualizat? de Autoritatea Electoral? Permanent? pân? la data de 10.09.2012)), Art. 7, http://www.becparlamentare2012.ro/DOCUMENTE/Legislatie/legea%2035%20(1).pdf

        Law no. 370/2004 on the election of the President of Romania, Art 15, http://www.bec2014.ro/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Lege-370-2004-actualizata-2014.pdf

        Reviewer's sources: Methodological norms for the application of Law 334/2006, document available in the consolidated form according to the last change from 04/10/2008, chapter 4, http://lege5.ro/en/Gratuit/geydomrxgq/norma-metodologica-de-aplicare-a-legii-nr-334-2006-privind-finantarea-activitatii-partidelor-politice-si-a-campaniilor-electorale-din-11072007

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        23
        Score
        MODERATE
        In law, political parties and individual candidates are required to report their financial information on a quarterly basis outside of electoral campaign periods.More about indicator

        Political parties are required to report their financial information on a yearly basis: the reporting of annual income and expenditures is done until 31 March the following year. Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) stipulates this aspect in several articles, on various types of contributions:

        Art 4, par. 4): “Political parties shall publish in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I, the total amount of the income from membership fees by 31 March of the following year, as well as the list of party members that paid in one year membership fees whose cumulated value exceeds 10 minimum gross salaries at the country level.”

        Art. 9, par. 1): “Political parties shall publish in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I the list of natural and legal persons who during a financial year made donations whose cumulated value exceeds 10 minimum gross base salaries at the country level, as well as the total amount of the confidential donations received by 31 March of the following year.”

        Art 12, par. 3): “Political parties shall publish in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I, the total value of the income obtained from other sources, by 31 March of the following year.”

        Art. 13, par. 4): “Political parties shall publish in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I, the total value of the amounts that represent the object of paragraph 1, by 31 March of the following year.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where political parties and individual candidates must report quarterly their financial information to the oversight authority outside of electoral campaign periods.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the requirement exists on a yearly basis. A MODERATE score is also earned where the requirement only applies to one actor (whether political parties or individual candidates).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 4, 9, 12 and 13, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/articole-legislatie/item-2-legislatie/

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        24
        Score
        0
        In practice, to what extent do political parties and individual candidates report itemized financial information monthly?More about indicator

        According to the legal provisions (Law 334/2006, applicable to all national level elections) political parties report itemized financial information on a yearly basis. Exceptions are made during electoral years when separate reports for electoral campaigns are provided within 15 days from the publication of the election result. See an example of such a report on the AEP website (check sources below)--as evident from page 1 of that document, reports are not itemized, but they do contain somewhat detailed information on sources of income and expenditure. These reports are published by the AEP in the Official Gazette of Romania, Part I, in a term of 30 days after the publication of the election results.

        The financial agent employed by parties/independent candidates is in charge of reporting.

        These financial agents their send reports required by the law through a coordinator agent. Marian Muhulet, the AEP vice-president, said that reports are always on time and problems appear in terms of content (e.g. undeclared sources) rather than timing. Arpad Todor, electoral expert from Pro Democracy Association, confirmed that these reports are available on time. Two party representatives, Dan Darabont from the social democrats and a local leader from the democrat liberals, argued that their parties understood the necessity of having these reports in time. In their view, political parties have already understood that this is one of their duties.

        Cristian Preda, Romanian MEP (EPP Group) says: “Based on my experience as a candidate in 2007 and 2014 elections for the European parliament, parties and candidate deliver their reports on time”.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) political parties and individual candidates report on their financial information monthly, and 2) the reports include both itemized contributions and itemized expenditures.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) the reports are occasionally general rather than itemized or don't contain all accounts, or 2) the reporting frequency is quarterly.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) political parties and individual candidates rarely or never file reports, 2) the reports are filed but are rarely or never itemized or refer only to either contributions or expenditures, or 3) the reporting frequency is less than quarterly.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 2. Arpad Todor, electoral expert, Pro Democracy Association, 24 July 2014. 3. Dan Darabont, member in the executive committee, Social Democratic Party, 25 July 2014. 4. Anonymous, local leader, Liberal Democratic Party, 25 July 2014. 5. Cristian Preda: Professor of Political Science, University of Bucharest and Romanian MEP (EPP group), 19 September 2014.

        Primary source: AEP website, Reports of political parties on electoral expenditures in 2012 legislative elections (http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Rapoarte-venituri-cheltuieli-aleg.parl_.2012.pdf)

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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        25
        Score
        0
        In practice, to what extent do financial reports by political parties and individual candidates include all types of contributions?More about indicator

        Financial reports do not include all contributions and some are omitted. Problems appear also with respect to donors’ names, having situations in which there are indirect donations. Arpad Todor, electoral expert from Pro Democracy Association, says:

        “The financial reports do not include all contributions because there are campaign monies that are not declared. Political parties pay a lot of attention to these things, they learned how to make them look legal and to hide some types of expenses. Quite often, donations are directed through individuals not companies because it is much easier to follow the money through companies.”

        Mihail Chiru, research fellow at Median Center, an NGO that analyzes political events in Romania provides an example of how money are not included in the official reports:

        “It is hard for me to believe that all contributions are included since there are maximum expense limits that are not very realistic. Second, quite often these reports show a negative balance between income and expenditures--they spend more than they bring in. Political parties are indebted after a electoral campaign and this looks very strange. At the same time, a company that will receive public contracts after elections will expose itself by making donations that are written on pAEPr. In addition, there are those cases under investigation by the Anticorruption Directorate or by media in which money derived from fiscal fraud made by government members are used for campaigns. It is quite obvious that this is black money that cannot be declared. The network under investigation at the moment belongs to Sorin Blejnar from ANAF (National Administration of Fiscal Administration).”

        A local leader of the PDL strengthened the idea that there are undeclared money used by political parties and provided an example in this sense:

        “Obviously, not all money used by a political party is declared in reports. A party or a candidate can receive from a donor a maximum amount. If there is a businessman with a high interest in who is going to be in office, he finds a way to give money without declaring it For example, it is the custom of those big feasts. In Cluj during the 2012 parliamentary elections a hotel and restaurant owner, threw on 1 December, two weeks before elections a big feast in which he officially celebrated the National Day (it is on 1 December) and something else. But the feast was for a specific party and the organizer also invited a candidate who had a special relationship with this hotel owner. Forced donations is another category that is not included in reports. To give you a real example, a party goes to a candidate and tells him: ‘Look, we have an available seat in constituency X, but to fill it you have to contribute with this amount’. And then the person can say ‘fine’ or ‘no’. Those money can go either in their campaign or directly to the party, it is unclear what happens with them. Also, there are candidates who have different activities during electoral campaigns and the gas used for transportation, costs with volunteers (food and coffee) are supported by candidates.”

        Dan Darabont, executive committee member of PSD, rejected the idea of possible omissions but acknowledged that donors’ identities can be problematic. His answer was too general to make a solid case:

        “I do not believe it is possible to omit things because it is like any accounting report: there must be a balance between entries and exits. The problem is to what extent the correct identity of the donor is specified.”

        These issues are complemented by news reports. Badea (2014) sAEPks about black money during electoral campaign for the 2012 legislative elections. A local party leader of PSD explained how one candidate for the Chamber of Deputies gave 10,000 RON for diverse campaign materials and activities to a party member. Instead of throwing feats and buying food for voters (treatment as vote-buying practice), the money ended up in the pockets of the person who was supposed to use them. These were undeclared money and thus nothing could be solved. Pavelescu (2014) presents a situation from the county organization of the PDL in which someone from the staff of a Senator took money from candidates to local elections and did not issue a receipt. This evidence is consistent with the facts presented by the PDL local leader.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. Alexandra Iancu, political scientist and analyst, says: “In practice private donations constitute the main financial resources for political parties; however, there is an important variation in the party finance according to both electoral cycles and party size. First, private donations tend to increase in pre-electoral and electoral years. Conversely, after the elections, sponsorship revenues substantially decline. This downfall in the private support is often correlated with the party electoral success, suggesting thus spoils-systems supporting mainstream parties, but also a self-finance mechanism through which candidates’ are directly contributing to the campaign. However, the public and official declarations of political parties identify membership fees as the main source of income of most parliamentary parties. To wit, in 2013, PSD declared 80% of revenues from membership fees, PNL - 57%. Contrariwise, PDL declared 30% revenues from membership dues. Note should be made that the official records on party finance indistinctly include donations from private sources and donations directly or indirectly allotted by party officials/candidates”.

        Similar comments are made by Cristian Preda, Romanian MEP (EEP Group): “most probably parties hide part of their expenditures. The effective cost of an electoral campaigns is rather high, most of the time above the law requirements. I do not have a long experience in the field, but during the most recent campaign for the EP elections, I was contacted by media representatives in order to buy their services off the record”. Similar observations are put forward by Greco 2010 report (p. 25): “The requirements of Law no. 334/2006 are circumvented by various means, including the registration as membership fees of donations that would normally exceed the permitted ceiling or the threshold for disclosure, the splitting of donations to avoid disclosure of identity and ceilings on donations etc”.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) reports include an itemized list of all contributions indicating their type (in-kind, cash where allowed, etc.) and amount (estimated value for in-kind contributions), and 2) contain donors' names and addresses (or other personal identifier).

        A 50 score is earned where only one of the two conditions listed in the 100 criteria is met.

        A 0 score is earned where neither condition is met.

        Sources

        Intreviews 1. Arpad Todor, electoral expert, Pro Democracy Association, 24 July 2014. 2. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014. 3. Anonymous, local leader, Liberal Democratic Party, 25 July 2014. 4. Dan Darabont, member in the executive committee, Social Democratic Party, 25 July 2014.

        Primary source: Dan Badea, “Adventures with politicians: They wasted black money for electoral campaign!”, Arges plus, 18 July 2014, http://www.argesplus.ro/aventuri-cu-politicieni-au-papat-aiurea-banii-negri-de-campanie.html Sorin Pavelescu, “Black money at PDL Iasi”, Buna ziua Iasi, 18 June 2014, http://www.bzi.ro/dezvaluiri-incendiare-din-mandatul-lui-marius-spinu-bani-negri-la-pdl-iasi-440461

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September 2014; Interview with Cristian Preda, Professor of Political Science, Romanian MEP (EEP Group), 19 September 2014.

        GRECO, “Evaluation Report on Romania on Incriminations (ETS 173 and 191, GPC 2)”, 3 December 2010, http://www.coe.int/t/dghl/monitoring/greco/evaluations/round3/GrecoEval3(2010)1RomaniaOne_EN.pdf

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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      Availability of Electoral Campaigns' Financial Information to the Public
      More about category
      • expand button!
        26
        Score
        YES
        In law, financial information from political parties and individual candidates must be available to the public.More about indicator

        Financial information from political parties is made available to the public. Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) explicitly stipulates the public availability of data. In addition to Art 4, par. 4, Art. 9, par. 1, Art 12, par. 3, Art. 13, par. 4, cited in previous indicators, Art. 36, par. 4, indicates the location for publication:

        “The annual report shall be published in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I and on the web site of the Permanent Electoral Authority by 31 March of the following year.”

        Transparency requirements in electoral campaign apply to parties, party candidates and independent candidates (art. 27). More specifically, art. 26, par.7 specifies that a party can have several financial agents, at the central level, for its local branches or for its candidates; the prerogatives of these decentralized financial agents have to be clearly indicated and a coordinating financial agent appointed. During election campaigns, the financial agent of each (party – or independent) keeps record of the income and expenditure and has to submit to the AEP a report on the compliance with the lawful terms.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - According to the Greco 2010 Report, these documents are kept and archived by the AEP for a period of 30 years; afterwards, the documents are submitted to the National Archives according to art. 13 para. (1) from Law 16/1996 (Law of the National Archives). Art. 35, par. 1 further reads: “the Permanent Electoral Authority is the public authority authorized to check the compliance with the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties, political or electoral alliances, independent candidates and electoral campaigns”. Both parties and independent candidate have to comply with provisions under art. 38, par. 1: “(1) Within 15 days from the publication of the election result, the financial agent shall submit to the Permanent Electoral Authority a detailed report on the electoral income and expenses of each political party or independent candidate”. In the following paragraphs, art. 38 further specifies;” (2) After the deadline according to paragraph (1), the Permanent Electoral Authority guarantee the progressive publication of the list of political parties, political alliances, electoral alliances, organizations of citizens belonging to national minorities and independent candidates that submitted a detailed report on the electoral income and expenses in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I; (3) The reports shall be published by the Permanent Electoral Authority in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I, within 30 days from the publication of the election results. (4) The candidates that have been declared elected cannot have their mandates validated if the detailed report on the electoral income and expenses of every political party and independent candidate was not submitted according to the lawful provisions.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where in law financial information of political parties and individual candidates must be made available to the public, whether online or digitally within two days of request.

        A MODERATE score is earned where financial information must be made available to the public, but no requirement exists regarding cost, format or number of days within which it must be made available.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 4, 9, 12, 13, 26, 27, and 36, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Reviewer's sources: GRECO, “Evaluation Report on Romania on Incriminations (ETS 173 and 191, GPC 2)”, 3 December 2010, http://www.coe.int/t/dghl/monitoring/greco/evaluations/round3/GrecoEval3(2010)1RomaniaOne_EN.pdf

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        27
        Score
        50
        In practice, to what extent can citizens easily access the financial information of all political parties and individual candidates?More about indicator

        Financial information of all political parties is in digital format and available online only in pdf format on the AEP Website (for 2013, see primary sources) and in the Official Journal. The past issues of the Official Journal can be either requested for free or accessed through special legislation software (not available for free, the subscription is not very expensive).

        There is consensus among all interviewees regarding the easy access to financial information. Sergiu Miscoiu, Emilia Sercan, and Tiberiu Farcas mentioned that whenever they needed access to financial information, they could easily find them in the Official Journal. That said, Clara Volintiru, PhD candidate in Political Science at London School of Economics, considers that the access to the Official Journal should be made more transparent and easy:

        “To have digital access from home, you must gain access to the legal search engines and those cost money. When I did my research on funding, I made a subscription to these search engines, but things were somehow complicated for ordinary citizens because not all data is in the same place. Political parties send their reports in different phases and the AEP checks them individually and publishes them after every check. This makes the information to be in different places. It is available to the public, but difficult to put together.”

        The confidential donations are the only sources not available to the public, but for the rest the AEP makes sure they are included in reports. During the interview Muhulet said that sanctions and fines are applied whenever their controls identify undeclared revenues in the reports provided by political parties. It is unclear what happens with the missing amounts in terms of availability since no updated reports are presented to the public.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - Cristian Preda shared this opinion: “Financial reports are available in digital format. Media speaks about them. When it comes to money, everybody gets interested". Alexandra Iancu, political scientist and analyst, concludes: “At first glance, financial information on parties and candidates is transparent and easily accessible. For example, in 2014 EP elections, the National Integrity Agency created an online dataset comprising both the personal financial disclosures and the conflict of interest affidavits of all the candidates enrolled in the competition. Transparent and comprehensive lists of donations are published in the Official Journal. However, it remains difficult to locate the interests behind these donations-i.e. sometimes donations are made by relatives of the party leaders or from sources closed to different interest groups (which remained unidentified). Resultantly, the companies listed as main donors are usually concealing, rather than unveiling the donors’ identity ”.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) all relevant financial information is freely available online, 2) it can be obtained digitally within two days of requesting it, and 3) it is in a machine readable format (for example in csv or xml format).

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) information is available but in some cases is incomplete or lacking detail, 2) obtaining complete information takes up to a month, or 3) it's not necessarily digital or in machine readable format.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) the information is not publicly available, or 2) obtaining it takes more than three months, or 3) the cost of obtaining it is prohibitive for the regular citizen.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014. 2. Emilia Sercan, senior editor, cursdeguvernare.ro, 28 July 2014. 3. Tiberiu Farcas, editor, clujulcultural.ro, 28 July 2014. 4. Clara Volintiru, PhD Candidate, London School of Economics and Political Science, 25 July 2014.

        Primary source: AEP website, Reports of political parties on income received in 2013, last accessed 29 July 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/articole-control/raportarile-formatiunilor-politice-privind-veniturile-inregistrate-in-anul-2013/

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September 2014; Interview with Cristian Preda, Professor of Political Science, Romanian MEP (EEP Group), 19 September 2014.

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        50
        In practice, to what extent is financial information published in a standardized format?More about indicator

        Only part of the financial information is published in a standardized format. The standardized items refer to the readable format of the report (pdf), general categories that have to be reported, and identification elements for donors (these have to be the same, specified in Law 334/2006). Apart from these items, political parties are free to choose how their report looks. For example, the 2013 annual report of the Social Democratic Party (PSD) shows the donations / county organization, while the 2013 annual report of the Democrat Liberal Party (PDL) merges all contributions. A closer look at these reports indicate that the aggregate sums specified at the beginning of reports do not find correspondence in the detailed figures. For example, the PDL has total revenues of 5,474,992 RON ($1,650,116 USD) out of which approximately one third result after summing up the donated amounts (see also partial sums at the end of the tables).

        Along the same lines, Clara Volintiru, PhD candidate at London School of Economics and Political Science, says:

        “In theory there is this idea of having the same categories in a financial report: donations from natural or legal persons, membership fees. In practice, every party and more than that, from year to year, the income is structured in different categories. When I did my study on arty financing in Romania it took a while to understand what is what, how private donations should be summed together. The tables do not have a standard format and it is very difficult to follow them if you do not convert them in excel. Categories are done differently: some parties aggregate them, other use sub-categories. At least they are all in RON and not in a different currency.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where financial information for all political parties and individual candidates is available to the public in a standardized format.

        A 50 score is earned where only part of the information is published in a standardized format. A 50 score is also earned where the information is standardized, but it doesn't cover all political parties and individual candidates.

        A 0 score is earned where financial information is not available in a standardized format.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Clara Volintiru, PhD Candidate, London School of Economics and Political Science, 25 July 2014.

        Primary sources: AEP, “Report for 2013 – Social Democratic Party”, last accessed 29 July 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Partidul-Social-Democrat.pdf AEP, “Report for 2013 – Democrat Liberal Party”, last accessed 29 July 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Partidul-Democrat-Liberal.pdf

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        100
        In practice, to what extent do mainstream journalism media outlets use political finance data in their reporting?More about indicator

        Mainstream journalism media outlets use political finance data on a regular basis either in the aftermath of electoral campaigns or after the annual reports are released. They often wait for the AEP official statements or for the publicly available reports in order to write about issues. Simina and Andrei (2014) wrote about estimated expenditures, maximum expense limits and money spent by political parties during the most recent electoral campaign. Mihai (2014), Mihalache (2014), and Toader (2014), although belonging to different outlets, wrote about a similar things: what political parties received donations during the electoral campaign.

        According to Emilia Sercan, senior editor at cursdeguvernare.ro, “Journalists use financial data in their reports especially during electoral campaigns, because that is the AEPk of interest. There is also interest in March when the annual data become public in the Official Journal. And then, depending on context, there are some cases when media makes connections between particular events and political financing.

        Toberiu Farcas, editor at clujulcultural.ro, considers that the task of journalists in reporting financial data is very important. According to him, they bring the financial data to the attention of citizens: “People often do not know where to look for these financial data and they learn from what journalists report. Journalists always use the financial reports when they make investigations, when they try to find illegal donations. In this sense, press is an important actor because it is the only one presenting the official reports to population”.

        Clara Volintiru, political scientist and analyst, says “In certain cases, when public people are involved, especially someone in public office, there are investigations about how much money he donated. I have read many articles about the amount of donations made by some people. For example, Daciana Sarbu (prime minister’s wife) made a donation of 20,000 RON ($6, 027 USD) for the 2012 electoral campaign.”


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - Alexandra Iancu, political scientist and analyst, says: “There has been extensive media coverage of the candidates/public officials’ financial disclosure affidavits. Both the press and the opposing parties explicitly denounced the illicit origins of some of these financial declarations. Moreover, press regularly reports on campaign spending, party finance, and indebted parties (usually by questioning party’s official records and declarations). Whereas press articles usually discuss the financial aspects of parties & candidates, there are virtually no follow-ups, or systematic journalistic investigations on the financial practices denounced in the articles”.

        On the eve of the 2014 presidential elections, three main media representatives – Mediafa , Ziarul Financiar, Gandul – launched a detailed series of reportage on the grey zones in party funding. Under the provocative title of “Do you know where your money goes? The real owners of Romanian Politics and the shuttle of party funding”, the series of article was launched on 16 September 2014 providing detailed information about corruption cases linked to illegal party funding. The article (published simultaneously by the three media representatives) included detailed tables on party funding based on AEP’s reports. Articles on this topic are regularly published, although the level of detail varies from case to case.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where at least three independent mainstream journalism media outlets have used officially published political party or individual candidate financial information as part of their reporting.

        A 50 score is earned where one independent mainstream journalism media outlet has used officially published financial information as part of its reporting.

        A 0 score is earned where no mainstream journalism media outlet has used officially published financial information as part of its reporting.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Emilia Sercan, senior editor, cursdeguvernare.ro, 28 July 2014. 2. Tiberiu Farcas, editor, clujulcultural.ro, 28 July 2014. 3. Clara Volintiru, PhD Candidate, London School of Economics and Political Science, 25 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Anca Simina and Cristian Andrei, “The right price of a ‘poor campaign’. How much do political parties spend in pAEPr and in reality to gain votes”, Gandul, 24 May 2014, http://www.gandul.info/politica/alegeri-europarlamentare-2014-pretul-corect-al-unei-campanii-austere-cat-dau-pe-hartie-si-cat-dau-in-realitate-partidele-ca-sa-va-castige-votul-12644723 Catalina Mihai, “PSD-UNPR-PC, the most donations in the campaign for European elections”, Mediafax, 23 May 2014, http://www.mediafax.ro/politic/psd-unpr-pc-cele-mai-multe-donatii-in-campania-pentru-europarlamentare-un-independent-ocupa-locul-6-sumele-primite-de-fiecare-partid-12647797 Madalina Mihalache, “Who got most of the money in the electoral campaign”, Adevarul, 24 May 2014, http://adevarul.ro/news/politica/cine-primit-cei-mai-bani-campanie-electorala-1_5380818c0d133766a8efffdf/index.html Emma Toader, “PNL, champion at donations in the electoral campaign for early elections”, Gandul, 23 May 2014, http://www.gandul.info/politica/pnl-campion-la-donatii-in-campania-electorala-pentru-alegerile-partiale-12647461

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September 2014.

        Mediafax (2014), “Do you know where your money goes? The real owners of Romanian Politics and the shuttle of party funding”, 16 September 2014, available at: http://www.mediafax.ro/politic/tu-stii-ce-mai-fac-banii-tai-patronii-reali-ai-politicii-din-romania-si-suveica-finantarii-partidelor-13276456

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        50
        In practice, to what extent were there no news reports or other documented incidents of violation or abuse of political finance laws?More about indicator

        There are isolated news reports and documented incidents of violation of political finance laws during the most recent national elections (9 December 2012). Burla and Stoica (2012) present the story of a PSD Deputy who arranged with a businessman to receive 130,000 RON ($391, 180 USD) for the electoral campaign of his party (USL was an electoral alliance between PSD and PNL). The amount was never declared and was supposed to be used for transportation during the USL campaign and for vote-buying through treatment.

        Both Emilia Sercan, senior editor at cursdeguvernare.ro, and Clara Volintiru, political scientist and analyst, argue that most media reports about financial issues refer to vote-buying than to violations of financial laws. Mihail Chiru, research fellow at Median Research Center, says: “Usually, media focuses on what is visible, on the financial reports, and they rarely conduct investigations beyond those reports. Based on reports they try to identify relationships between donations and public contracts allocated to companies. I have seen no investigation regarding undeclared contributions”.

        All this points to isolated evidence regarding the existence of news reports about financing law violations. Many news reports were dedicated to vote-buying, while others news reports presented accusations coming from candidates against their opponents. These were accused for using public money during campaign but since none of the accusations was properly documented they cannot be considered more than a speculation. Usually, if journalists fins out about problems, they write extensively as it happened with the elections in 2004 (RL Online 2006).


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. Alexandra Iancu, political scientist and analyst, synthetizes the issue: “Political agendas often determine whether the press reports on the abuse of party finance laws and regulations. Press articles mirror merely internal party conflicts –i.e. the disgruntled leaders criticizing the party leadership and the self-finance hidden practices (i.e. PPDD’s after the elections). Press articles, relying on the right to disseminate value-judgments, often provide “general interrogations” on the sources and mechanisms of party finance. By the same token, journalists focus more on public spending and the misuse of the state resources in public offices (as a defense mechanism against libel cases). As the financial crisis deeply affected the media outlets –particularly the printed press- there is little room for journalistic investigations targeting party finance laws”.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where there were no news reports or other documented incidents of violation or abuse of political finance laws during the most recent national election.

        A 50 score is earned where there were news reports or other documented incidents of no more than two cases of violation or abuse of political finance laws during the most recent national election.

        A 0 score is earned where there were frequent news reports or other documented incidents of violation or abuse of political finance laws during the most recent national election.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Emilia Sercan, senior editor, cursdeguvernare.ro, 28 July 2014. 2. Clara Volintiru, PhD Candidate, London School of Economics and Political Science, 25 July 2014. 3. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Virgil Burla and Ionel Stoica, “Operation ‘Money for the party’. The PSD Deputy Ion Stan collected black money for the USL electoral campaign, Evenimentul zilei, 23 Nov. 2012, http://www.evz.ro/operatiunea-bani-pentru-partid-deputatul-psd-ion-stan-strangea-bani-negri-pentru-campania-e.html

        Secondary sources: RL Online, “Parliamentary parties received illegal donations of 11 billion ROL” (ROL is the old currency, 1 RON = 10,000 ROL), 23 February 2006, http://www.romanialibera.ro/politica/institutii/partidele-parlamentare-au-primit-ilegal-donatii-de-11-miliarde--59129

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September 2014.

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        0
        In practice, to what extent were there no news reports or other documented incidents of vote-buying?More about indicator

        There were frequent news reports of vote-buying during the most recent national election (December 2012). These reports involved the main parliamentary parties and were spread throughout the country. In her news report Ivan (2012) tells the story of a Member of Parliament, candidate in the legislative elections, who is under investigation for offering treatment during electoral campaign to people during a football game. Mladin (2012) presents the innovative vote-buying strategy of the party that ended third in the 2012 legislative elections. This party signed contracts with a car washing service provider and the cars of voters were washed for free or for small prices (the difference in price was covered by the candidates of the political party). The news report published in Informatia de Severin (2012) indicates that candidates of the USL (the electoral alliance of social democrats and liberals) provided bags of food to voters. In the bags, there were flyers with the USL candidate for Senate. These are only some examples of the large amount of news report about different forms of vote-buying in the 2012 parliamentary elections.

        According to Tiberiu Farcas, editor at clujulcultural.ro: “Every time journalists identify a case of vote buying, they report it. For example, in 2012 the PNL had some guys sent from the central office to arrange things in Cluj, to buy votes. And media reported at the time about these procedures”.

        Mihail Chiru, research fellow at Median Research Center, says: “There are many instances in which journalists undercover succeeded to sell their vote. There were news reports about how voters receive money before the vote and they must take a photo of the ballot to prove their vote. During electoral campaigns this is quite common.” Emilia Sercan, senior editor at cursdeguvernanta.ro, also emphasized the use of ballot photos to receive the promised bribe.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. Alexandra Iancu, political scientist and analyst, provides a clear overview: “Although press presented cases of individual vote-buying (in the most direct form), usually the main media outlets support the politicians’ allegations pointing to systemic practices of financial rewards provided in the exchange of votes. Moreover, after each election parties criticize the opponents for vote-buying (coupled with “electoral tourism”, “double-voting” etc.). However, all these claims – with the exception of few individual counter-examples- did not find substantial ground in the outcomes of subsequent investigations. Nevertheless, as pointed out in previous sections, indirect vote buying- electoral bribes, electoral gifts, policy-driven incentives continue to play an important role as indirect forms of buying votes”.

        The issue was covered by the 2012 OCSE report on the parliamentary elections as a “long-standing malpractice of vote-buying” compliant with recurrent “allegations that some local authorities distributed EU funds and aid programs during the campaign under the name of their respective parties”. In an article publish before the May elections for the EP, Appelt, Bird, Candea and Popkostadinov (2014) consider vote-buying one of the threats haunting the May elections. "The Roma community are always subject to vote-buying," argued for EUObserver 2014’ analysis Ciprian Necula, Romania-based Roma activist, "although this type of campaign violation also targets the elderly and the rural areas”.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where there were no news reports or other documented incidents of vote-buying during the most recent national election.

        A 50 score is earned where there were news reports or other documented incidents of no more than two cases of vote-buying during the most recent national election.

        A 0 score is earned where there were frequent news reports or other documented incidents of vote-buying during the most recent national election.

        Sources

        Interviews 1. Tiberiu Farcas, editor, clujulcultural.ro, 28 July 2014. 2. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014. 3. Emilia Sercan, senior editor, cursdeguvernare.ro, 28 July 2014.

        Primary sources Ioana Ivan, “Cristian Boureanu accused of electoral bribe”, Income magazine, 28 November 2012, http://incomemagazine.ro/articole/cristian-boureanu-acuzat-ca-a-dat-mita-electorala. Gabriela Mladin, “Dan Diaconescu, another case of electoral bribe”, Gorjeanul, 20 November 2012, http://www.gorjeanul.ro/politic/dan-diaconescu-alt-dosar-de-mita-electorala#.U9swjeOSzsV Informatia de Severin, “Electoral bribe from USL”, 1 December 2012, http://www.informatiadeseverin.ro/ids2/index.php/stirile-zilei/10247-mit-electoral-din-partea-usl.html

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September, 2014.

        OCSE (2013), Romania, Parliamentary Elections, 9 December 2012: Final Report,available at: http://www.osce.org/odihr/98757

        EUObserver (2014), “Threat of voter fraud haunts EU vote in Romania, Bulgaria and Croatia”, 18 March 2014, available at: http://euobserver.com/eu-elections/123485)

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        50
        In practice, to what extent do civil society organizations use political finance data?More about indicator

        In the interval January 2013 – July 2014 one civil society organization used political finance data in its work. In its annual report on political clientelism Expert Forum made connections between data from the financial reports of political parties and public procurement in Romania (see primary sources). Apart from this, no other civil society organization used similar data.

        Until 2008, both Pro Democracy Association and Institute for Public Policy had reports that made extensive use of financial data. Pro Democracy even had systematic reports as declared by Arpad Todor. Mihail Chiru, research fellow at Median Research Center, speaks also about initiatives from the past: “There were a few attempts especially after the GRECO report. For example, the Soros Foundation tried to organize a conference to promote the change of party financing according to those recommendations. There is some interest, not very visible, from several NGOs.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where at least three civil society organizations have used officially published political party or individual candidate financial information as part of their advocacy or awareness work.

        A 50 score is earned where one civil society organization has used officially published financial information as part of its advocacy or awareness work.

        A 0 score is earned where no civil society organization has used officially published financial information as part of its work.

        Sources
        1. Arpad Todor, electoral expert, Pro Democracy Association, 24 July 2014.
        2. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Expert Forum, "Political clientelism: Annual Report", 19 February 2013, http://expertforum.ro/en/files/2013/02/rap-englishPB19.pdf

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        Score
        --
        Open Question: Have there been political finance legal reforms or reform bills presented to the legislature in the last 10 years?More about indicator

        There were some initiatives to reform political finance law in Romania in the past decade, the most notable of which were spurred by the Group Against State Corruption's (GRECO) 2010 recommendations on necessary anti-corruption reforms in Romania.

        Law 334/2006 (applicable to all elections at national level) has been updated and republished in 2010. In 2011, an executive order altered some provisions of this law. Apart from these changes, there were several initiatives to change the law. Many of them, according to Mihail Chiru, research fellow at Median research Center, were not finalized: “There were discussions about the change of law on party financing, but they did not make any progress, they remained as a project.” The most recent initiative has been favorably passed in Senate in February 2014 (Draghici 2014) and it is currently being discussed in the specialized committees in the Chamber of Deputies. Marian Muhulet, the AEP vice-president, referred to this law project, mentioning that the AEP has proposed some articles in line with the GRECO recommendations regarding party financing (for details, see the secondary sources).

        Sergiu Miscoiu, political scientist and analyst, sAEPks about the existence of such initiatives and provides an explanation for the absence of parliamentary debates: “There were more attempts and the most important came from the PDL and Monica Macovei. These attempts are related more to electoral campaigns and party programs because the proposers tried to legitimize on an institutional basis some acts. Due to the legislatures’ fragmentation the chances for these projects to pass are quite limited. Very few proposals passed the committees also because Parliament is blocked for a while by the large amount of executive orders. The initiatives belonging to MPs are ranked fourth or fifth after acts coming from the executive.”

        While Dan Darabont from the PSD was not aware of any legislative initiative, a local leader from the PDL referred to one recent civil society initiative: “The Pro Democracy Association had an initiative of an electoral code that included several chapters about a law on party financing. They required more transparency and brought in some mechanisms used in Western Europe.” The local leader did not recall what happened with this proposal, but it did not make it to Parliament.

        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - Since the adoption of law 43/2003 until the current version of Law 334/2006, there have been several initiatives aiming to amend the legal framework: a detailed index is available on the Chamber of deputies’ website (http://www.cdep.ro/pls/proiecte/upl_pck.lista?cam=2). A first initiative dates back to 2005. The national-populist Great Romania Party (PRM) endorsed a project of modification specifically designed against the Democratic Union of Hungarians in Romania (UDMR). Considering the nationalist dimension of the bill, the PRM initiative was blocked first in Senate in November 2005 and then in the Chamber in March 2006. In the same period, a group of MPs belonging to the current Democratic Liberal Party endorsed legislative initiative of modification of Law 43/2003 motivated by the need to comply with the EU legal framework. The initiative was rejected by the Senate in April 2006, got lost in the working of specialized parliamentary Commissions and was definitely rejected by the Chamber (without any debate) in 2009.

        Following a government initiative, Law 334/2006 was approved at the Senate in June 2006 and less than a month later in the Chamber. In May 2007, a group of 18 MPs representing ethnic minorities in the Chamber endorsed a new initiative of modification with the aim to generate a positive discrimination by modifying the provisions under art. 48: “The provisions hereof shall also apply accordingly to organizations of citizens belonging to national minorities which are assimilated to political parties, political alliances, electoral alliances and independent candidates, according to the conditions provided for by the electoral law”. The initiative was blocked both in the Senate and the Chamber in May 2007. In 2008, an initiative endorsed by a group of PSD Senators aimed to introduce a minimal level of subsidies from the state budget: 25 minimum gross base salaries at the country level for each candidate for the position of commune mayor and 50 minimum gross base salaries at the country level for other candidates. The initiative was rejected in the Senate in 2008 and one year later in the Chamber. In 2010, a PDL initiative endorsed the suspension of the parties’ annual subsidy from the state budget for one year. Rejected in the Senate in 2010, the initiative received a negative vote in the Chamber in 2013.

        Proposed Legal Reforms, 2003-2014, available on the Chamber of Deputies website, http://www.cdep.ro/pls/proiecte/upl_pck.lista?cam=2

        Scoring Criteria

        Please list and describe all documented instances of: 1) political finance reforms, including bills passed, executive orders signed, court rulings and any other legal act that had a direct effect on existent political finance regulation, and 2) all legal reform attempts presented to the legislature even if they were not approved. Please describe the political context that produced the reforms or reform attempts.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014. 2. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 3. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014. 4. Dan Darabont, member in the executive committee, Social Democratic Party, 25 July 2014. 5. Anonymous, local leader, Liberal Democratic Party, 25 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756
        Law 124/2011 to complete art. 12, par. 1 from law 334/2006, http://www.cdep.ro/proiecte/2010/700/70/2/legpl77210.pdf Mircea Draghici, “The project on party financing was approved by Senate”, 5 February 2014, http://www.mirceadraghici.ro/proiectul-privind-finantarea-partidelor-politice-aviz-favorabil-la-senat.html.

        Secondary sources: GRECO, “Evaluation Report on Romania on Incriminations (ETS 173 and 191, GPC 2)”, 3 December 2010, http://www.coe.int/t/dghl/monitoring/greco/evaluations/round3/GrecoEval3(2010)1RomaniaOne_EN.pdf

        The names of anonymous sources are known to Global Integrity and Global Integrity has agreed not to disclose them.

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    Third Party Actors

    More about category
    composite
    0
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      Applicability of the Law to Third-Party Actors
      More about category
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        Score
        NO
        In law, third-party actors (foundations, think tanks, unions, political action committees, etc.) report itemized contributions received and expenditures to an oversight authority and the information is made publicly available.More about indicator

        According to Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) some of third party actors (trade unions, religious cults) are not allowed to make electoral expenditures (see Art. 10, par. 3 and Art. 25, par. 2). As a consequence of these two provisions, no third-party actors are not asked to report expenditures to the oversight authority. No reporting requirements regarding independent expenditures exist.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) third-party actors are required to report to the oversight authority itemized contributions received and expenditures related to their support of electoral campaigns, and 2) the information must be publicly available.

        A MODERATE score is earned where third-party actors are required to report itemized contributions received and expenditures related to their support of electoral campaigns, but the information is not required to be publicly available. A MODERATE score is also earned where regulations exist, but only apply to electoral campaigns of one actor (whether political party or individual candidate).

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010). Relevant articles: art. 10. art. 25, updated version available at: http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/articole-legislatie/item-2-legislatie/

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        0
        In practice, to what extent do third-party actors (foundations, think tanks, unions, political action committees, etc.) report itemized contributions received and expenditures to an oversight authority?More about indicator

        In the absence of legal requirements, no third-party actors report contributions to the oversight authority. Mariam Muhulet, the vice-president of the AEP, mentioned that the AEP did not receive any report from think tanks or organizations with electoral activities and none have asked for public funding of any sort. Consistent with this perspective, Clara Volintiru is not aware of any report, while Mihail Chiru adds: “They do no report anything and I have never seen any such report. There are some associations that help political parties. For example, the PDL received donations from the CDU Foundation, Konrad Adenauer Stiftung, that were used for campaign training. I know this from an inside source and I doubt there are accounting reports about this process.”


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. Alexandra Iancu, political scientist and analyst, says: “There are no legal requirements. In Romania, trade unions are usually weak organizations and the trade union leaders usually hope to perpetuate the ‘tradition’ of being coopted in public offices. As for the other actors - there is a reverse phenomenon - the national third party actors –i.e. foundations, think-tanks are mostly relying on political parties/political leaders in public offices for financing their programs/projects. Some of these foundations are openly linked to or supporting a particular ideological affiliation, in other cases, the connection between third-actors and parties is hard to quantify. The only exceptions in this regard are the few international foundations - which contribute to the electoral campaigns by organizing debates/events, training and leadership programs, inviting international speakers etc."

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where all third-party actors report to an oversight authority both itemized contributions received and itemized expenditures.

        A 50 score is earned where third-party actors report to an oversight authority either itemized contributions received or expenditures, but not both. A 50 score is also earned where the reports refer only to one type of third-party actor, but do not cover others.

        A 0 score is earned where third-party actors rarely or never report itemized contributions received or expenditures.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 2. Clara Volintiru, PhD Candidate, London School of Economics and Political Science, 25 July 2014. 3. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014.

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September, 2014.

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        0
        In practice, to what extent can journalists and citizens easily access the financial information of third party actors, including the political spending of those actors in support of political parties and individual candidates?More about indicator

        In Romania, third party actors do not make their information publicly available and there is no possibility to access this type of information. While all three interviewees spoke about the absence of third-party actors from the political arena and the non-availability of their reports, Marian Muhulet, the AEP vice-president, connects the issue with what GRECO identified as third-party actors that are not present in Romania: “Until now, I have not identified any natural or legal person who can be labeled as third-party actor. No trade unions, foundations, or the like invest their resources in electoral activities."


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. A peculiar case regards the funds provided by groups of parties in the European Parliament to their affiliated MEP. Cristian Preda, Romanian MEP (EEP group) emphasized that these resources which use is strictly regulated and documented through the financial reports of the EP groups. Activities funded with these funds cannot have an electoral dimension, for example the EEP group can finance the MEP website but MEPs cannot post any information susceptible of a political dimension during an electoral campaign.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) all relevant financial information is freely available online or in hard copy at the cost of photocopying, 2) it can be obtained within two days of requesting it, and 3) it is in a machine readable format (for example in csv or xml format).

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) information is available but in some cases is incomplete or lacking detail, 2) obtaining complete information takes up to a month, or 3) it's not necessarily in machine readable format.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) the information is not publicly available, or 2) obtaining it takes more than three months, or 3) the cost of obtaining it is prohibitive for the regular citizen.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 2. Clara Volintiru, PhD Candidate, London School of Economics and Political Science, 25 July 2014. 3. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014.

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September 2014.

        Interview with Cristian Preda, Professor of Political Science, Romanian MEP (EEP Group), 19 September 2014.

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        --
        Open Question: Please describe how third party-actors (even if they are not regulated by your country's laws) obtain contributions and spend in support of political parties and/or individual candidates.More about indicator

        There are no third-party actors that provide financial support to political parties. This has been confirmed by interviews with Emilia Sercan, senior editor at cursdeguvernanta.ro, and Marian Muhulet, vice-president of AEP. The most common way in which some NGOs support political parties has been described by Sergiu Miscoiu, political scientist and analyst. According to him, such NGOs do not have explicit political purposes but receive preferential public money for their academic or cultural activities that are used to promote the party:

        “There are NGOs that are close to political parties and they receive state money for various types of projects. For example, in the case of the Social Democratic Party (PSD), the Institute of Social Democratic Studies ‘Ovidiu Sincai’ and three other NGOs that fall under this category. They gain preferential access to funds that are in particular allocated through ministers and Prime Minister Chancellery. And these funds are later used in connection with party activities. For example, if the Institute of Social Democratic Studies organizes a conference about the project to reduce the contributions to the public health system, a hot topic in Romania. Such an event clearly promotes the ideas of the government and the PSD.”


        Peer reviewer comment: Exceptions to this are political foundations.

        Based on the German model, several Romanian political parties supported the creation of political foundations: the Institute "Ovidiu ?incai" of Bucharest - close to the Social Democratic Party (PSD) - is member of the Foundation for European Progressive Studies (the European political foundation of the Party of European Socialists); the Romanian Institute of Liberal Studies is close to the liberal party (PNL) and member of the European Liberal Forum (the political foundation at EuroAEPn level affiliated to the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Party), the Popular Studies Institute is the foundation linked to Liberal Democratic Party (PDL), and close to the Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies (the Political foundation at European level of the European People's Party).

        As illustrated by the 2010 FDSC Report, from a strictly legal point of view, these foundations were designed as sources of ideas and forums for ideological debates and elites training. According to the 2010 Report, these foundations as well as other NGOs have been under constant threat of being used for opaque and illegitimate campaign financing. (e.g: providers of sociological researches, surveys, organizers of campaign electoral events, etc.). The 2010 Report quotes a previous 2008 study (Moraru et al. 2008) according to which NGOs and political foundations are depicted as the channel through which campaign events are paid and donations collected.

        According to Cristian Preda, Romanian MEP (EPP group), “Political affiliations explains why and how NGOs and political foundations sometimes become privileged beneficiaries of the State”. An eloquent example (2010 FSC Report, p. 128) is the Social Democratic Institute Ovidiu ?incai. In the 2008, the Institute received the status of public utility equating to a privileged access to public assets and resources from the state budget and local budgets. The 2008 PNL-led government granted the same status to the Institute for Liberal Studies. Moreover, Preda states that "“there are also non-profit political foundations. Most of their financial resources are provided by foreign similar foundations. Still, from my experience, if a German foundation joins you in a project, the German team will expect you to comply with transparent procedures. A similar behavior is expected when it comes to funds related to the political groups of the European Parliament.”

        Scoring Criteria

        To answer this question please: 1) list the types of third-party actors that exist in your country and describe how they work to influence campaigns, 2) explain how important such actors are or not in the context of campaigns, including whether their expenditures are substantial in relation to that of political parties and individual candidates, and 3) if documented evidence indicates they circumvent laws intended to regulate political finance, please explain how and include references to the evidence.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 2. Emilia Sercan, senior editor, cursdeguvernare.ro, 28 July 2014. 3. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014.

        Reviewer's sources: Cristian Preda, Professor of Political Science, Romanian MEP (EEP Group), 19 September 2014.

        Secondary sources: The NGOs: features, trends and challenges (România 2010. Sectorul neguvernamental, profil, tendin?e, provoc?ri, Bucharest, available at: http://www.fdsc.ro/library/conferinta%20vio%207%20oct/Romania%202010_Sectorul%20neguvernamental1.pdf

        Moraru, Adrian, Ercu? Loredana, and Miron R?zvan (2008), "The 2008 local election through the lenses of civil society. National report on the mechanisms and practices of party funding" (Alegerile locale 2008 prin ochii societ??ii civile. Raport na?ional privind mecanisme ?i practice folosite de partide pentru finan?area activit??ilor specifi ce campaniei electorale pentru alegerile locale), Institutul pentru Politici Publice, Bucharest, 2008, available at: http://www.ipp.ro/pagini/alegerile-locale-2008-prin-ochii-societ.php; FDSC (2010), Romania.

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    Monitoring and Enforcement

    More about category
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      Monitoring Capabilities
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        YES
        In law, political finance information is monitored by an independent oversight authority.More about indicator

        The Electoral Permanent Authority (AEP) is in charge of monitoring, controlling and investigating the financial information of political parties. According to Art. 63, par. 1) in Law 35/2008, the AEP is an autonomous institution:

        “The Permanent Electoral Authority is an autonomous administrative institution, being a legal entity with general competence, which ensures the integrated implementation, within the time lapse between two electoral periods, of the legal dispositions regarding the organization and conduct of elections, or of other consultations with national or local character. The Permanent Electoral Authority shall pursue and support the endowment of the polling stations with the necessary logistics, as well as the achievement of specific operations within the time lapse between two electoral periods.”

        Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) clearly stipulates in Art. 35 that the AEP us the public authority in charge of controls on party financing, while audits are carried out by the Court of Audit:

        “(1) The Permanent Electoral Authority is the public authority authorized to check the compliance with the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties, political or electoral alliances, independent candidates and electoral campaigns. (2) The control of the subsidies from the state budget shall be carried out simultaneously by the Court of Audit, according to the provisions of Law no. 94/1992 on the organization and operation of the Court of Audit, as republished, as subsequently amended and completed.”

        The same law includes details regarding the monitoring, control and investigation responsibilities of the oversight authority:

        Art. 23, par. 1): “Any donation or legacy received after the initiation of an electoral campaign from natural or legal persons shall be notified to the Permanent Electoral Authority by the financial agent within 5 working days from receiving the same.”

        Art. 26, par. 4), letter c): “to submit to the Permanent Electoral Authority a report on the compliance with the lawful terms regarding the financing of political parties during an electoral campaign.”

        Art. 26, par. 10) (not in the English version) “The Permanent Electoral Authority can request if it considers necessary, the financial agents to provide supplementary documents or explanations.”

        Art. 29, par. 4): “The political parties and alliances, as well as the independent candidates shall state to the Permanent Electoral Authority, through their financial agent, the number of electoral propaganda materials produced, according to categories.”

        Art. 36 summarizes the investigation powers: “(1) The Permanent Electoral Authority shall check annually and whenever notified the compliance of each party with the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties. (2) The Permanent Electoral Authority can be notified by any person providing evidence regarding the breach of the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties. (3) Any false statements made by the person stipulated under paragraph 2 regarding the breach of the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties shall represent a crime and it shall be punished with 1 to 3 year jail sentence. (4) The annual report shall be published in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I and on the web site of the Permanent Electoral Authority by 31 March of the following year. (5) The Permanent Electoral Authority can check the compliance with the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties in case of any suspicions of breach of such lawful provisions brought to its attention by any interested persons or by default. (6) The results of every control carried out shall be published in the Official Journal of Romania, Part I and on the web site of the Permanent Electoral Authority within 15 days from such control.”


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. The secondary legislation adopted with Government Decision no. 749/2007 contains implementing measures including, for instance, details on the standard formats (sample FD6 for donations, sample FC7 for membership fees, etc.), the mathematic formula to be used by the AEP for the calculation of the state subsidy (art. 18), the procedural steps for controls performed by the AEP (chapter 6) and the application of sanctions (chapter 7). Additional details are provided in the annex of the Government Decision no. 749/2007.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) an independent oversight authority is mandated to monitor political finance information, and 2) the authority has investigation and audit powers.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the independent oversight authority is mandated to monitor political finance information, but doesn't have investigation or audit powers.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 35/2008 Law no. 35/2008 for the election to the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate (version updated by the Permanent Electoral Authority until 10 September 2012) (Legea nr. 35/2008 pentru alegerea Camerei Deputa?ilor ?i a Senatului (variant? actualizat? de Autoritatea Electoral? Permanent? pân? la data de 10.09.2012)), Art. 63, http://www.becparlamentare2012.ro/DOCUMENTE/Legislatie/legea%2035%20(1).pdf

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 23, 26, 29, 35 and 36, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Reviewer's sources: Government Decision no. 749 of 11 July 2007 on approving the Methodological Norms for applying Law no. 334/2006 on financing activities of political parties and electoral campaigns (Hot?rârea Guvernului nr. 749/2007 pentru aprobarea Normelor metodologice de aplicare a Legii nr. 334/2006 privind finan?area activit??ii partidelor politice ?i a campaniilor electorale, cu modific?rile ?i complet?rile ulterioare. Text actualizat de Autoritatea electorala permanenta) , available at: http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Hot%C4%83r%C3%A2rea-nr.749-din-2007.pdf

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        MODERATE
        In law, high-level appointments to the oversight authority are based on merit.More about indicator

        The high level appointments in the AEP are partly based on merit (only for the position of president) and some minimum incompatibilities (non-membership in parties at the moment of appointment). This is stipulated in law. Art. 63 of Law 35/2008 regulates the conditions for appointment. According to par. 4) the president of the AEP should have legal or administrative education. These criteria are vague for two reasons: a) administrative studies can also mean expertise in the functioning of a post office or of a citizens’ office and does not imply knowledge on electoral matters and b) there are many low profile universities in Romania (usually the private ones) that provide such education on paper without even attending their courses.

        These minimal requirements do not even apply to vice-presidents in par. 5). At the same time, par. 6) stipulates a single incompatibility: neither the president nor the vice-presidents can be members of political parties. This does not prohibit the appointment of former party members. In the absence of clear criteria of merit, the appointment is may be partisan since the parliamentary majority appoints the president and one vice-president (the one appointed by prime minister):

        “(4) The president is appointed by decision adopted in a joint session of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate, at the proposal of parliamentary groups, from among the personalities educated and trained in the legal or administrative field. The candidate who meets the Deputies and Senators’ majority of votes shall be appointed president. (5) The president is seconded by two vice-presidents with a rank of state secretary, of which one is appointed by the President of Romania, and the other by the Prime Minister. (6) The president and vice presidents cannot be members of a political party.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) high-level appointments must be based on merit in a public appointment process; and 2) appointees must be free of conflicts of interest due to personal loyalties, family connections, political party affiliations, business partners or other biases.

        A MODERATE score is earned where high-level appointments must be based on merit in a public appointment process, but the regulations don't forbid appointments involving conflicts of interest or other biases.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 35/2008 Law no. 35/2008 for the election to the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate (version updated by the Permanent Electoral Authority until 10 September 2012) (Legea nr. 35/2008 pentru alegerea Camerei Deputa?ilor ?i a Senatului (variant? actualizat? de Autoritatea Electoral? Permanent? pân? la data de 10.09.2012)), Art. 63, http://www.becparlamentare2012.ro/DOCUMENTE/Legislatie/legea%2035%20(1).pdf

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        In practice, to what extent are high-level appointments to the oversight authority based on merit?More about indicator

        Interviews with two representatives of civil society indicate the political appointment of high-level officials in the oversight authority (The Permanent Electoral Authority, AEP). Referring to the current situation. Arpad Todor, the electoral expert of Pro Democracy Association, said that the current president of the AEP, Ana Maria Patru, was unqualified for the job but one of the current vice-president was:

        “No, her appointment was political. She was appointed by Udrea… she was among Udrea’s acquaintances and she got appointed. She neither had academic studies nor worked in the field, but Udrea appointed her because she wanted to have a person of trust there. Initially, it was someone else favorite for the job, I worked with him at the electoral law, but… Instead, Muhulet, the guy who was appointed vice-president by the PNL, had experience, he worked on such issues”.

        Mihail Chiru, research fellow at Median Research Center, with extensive experience in electoral issues mentioned that Patru had little professional merit when appointed and started to learn only upon taking office:

        “I would not like to contest the professional capacity of anyone working in the AEP, but Ana Maria Patru or other people at the top level do not appear very competent. Or they do not appear to have some sort of career to recommend them for this job, neither academically nor practically. Those people seem to be learning while doing things there.”

        Some background information is helpful in better understanding the situation. AEP has a consultative council formed of 4 people: one president (with the position of minister), two vice-presidents (with the position of state secretaries), and one general secretary. The appointment procedure of vice-presidents – one vice-president is nominated by the president, and the other by prime-minister – reveals an important political factor in reaching decisions. The history of appointments shows little merit in them and a lot of political decision. Whenever an AEP president had to be appointed, there was a single candidate, being more a coronation than a competition for the position. For example, the AEP president is elected by the two Chambers of Parliament. The first president was Octavian Opris (2003-2011) who had no studies or experience in electoral matters to recommend him as a suitable candidate for the position. Instead, he was a social-democrat (PSD) Senator between 1990 and 2003 and social-democrats had majority in Parliament when the AEP president was elected. His successor, Ana Maria Patru (since 2012) was elected as president following a proposal of the Democrat Liberal Party (PDL). Her connections with the country president (Traian Basescu, former leader of the PDL) and Elena Udrea (former Minister of Tourism in the PDL government) are notorious and documented in the media. One of the articles cited in the sources section tells how she celebrated together with Basescu, Udrea and other PDL members in the evening of elections the victory of president’s daughter in the EP elections in 2009 although she was vice-president of the AEP back then.

        Patru was appointed as vice-president of the AEP in 2007 by Basescu following a career in his party (PDL) though she had no studies or experience related to elections. She graduated law in a private university (private universities in Romania are low profile) and had an internship in a local branch of the AEP before being appointed vice-president. Dan Vlaicu, the vice-president appointed in 2012 to replace Patru who became the president of the AEP, was politically appointed by the caretaker president (Basescu was imAEPched at the time). The caretaker was the president of the National Liberal Party (PNL) and he appointed Vlaicu who was president at the authority for consumer’s protection under the liberal government until 2008. All this evidence illustrates intertwined AEP career and political paths.

        In light of such evidence, it's clear that there are rare instances in which the high-level appointments in which merit plays role. Even when merit is taken into account, (e.g. Muhulet, one of the current AEP vice-presidents), according to the two experts/analysts interviewed and to the primary sources and secondary sources the political affiliation always plays an important/higher role. For example, Muhulet held two key positions in the PNL government between 2004 and 2008.


        Peer reviewer comment: Disagree.
        Cristian Preda, Romanian MEP and Professor of Political Science, states: “ From the very beginning appointments to the oversight authority have been rather political although this does not cancel the merit issue. If doubts were raised by Patru appointment, vice-presidents like Alexandru Radu (Professor of political science, expert in electoral studies – appointed by PSD) or Muhulet (solid background in political studies –appointed by PNL) met definitely more consensus”.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) there is an advertised competition and public vetting process, 2) candidates with the most merit and without conflicts of interest or other biases are appointed.

        A 50 score is earned where the public competition is usually advertised and the vetting process public, but exceptions exist. A 50 score is also earned where candidates with the most merit and without conflicts of interest or other biases are appointed but exceptions exist.

        A 0 score is earned where there's rarely or never a public competition, or appointees are rarely selected on merit or without conflicts of interest or other biases.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Arpad Todor, electoral expert, Pro Democracy Association, 24 July 2014. 2. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Jurnalul National, Crin Antonescu appointed Dan Vlaicu, former ANPC president, as vice-president of the AEP, 3 August 2012, http://jurnalul.ro/stiri/politica/antonescu-l-a-numit-pe-dan-vlaicu-fost-presedinte-anpc-in-functia-vicepresedinte-al-aep-620087.html

        Jurnalul National, Master of the Lists. Basescu’s Man rules the Permanent Electoral Authority. Who is Ana Maria Patru, 3 august 2012, http://jurnalul.ro/stiri/observator/stapana-listelor-omul-lui-basescu-conduce-autoritatea-electorala-permanenta-cine-este-ana-maria-patru-620095.html

        Secondary Sources: Virgil Burla, Permanent Electoral Authority wastes money, 6 February 2007, http://www.romanialibera.ro/special/investigatii/autoritatea-electorala-permanenta-toaca-banii-de-pomana-86310

        ziare.com, Ana Maria Patru: I am friend with everyone, I did nothing illegal, 11 June 2009, http://www.ziare.com/basescu/maria-basescu/ana-maria-patru-sunt-prietena-cu-toata-lumea-nu-am-facut-nimic-ilegal-783104

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Cristian Preda, Professor of Political Science, Romanian MEP (EEP Group), 19 September 2014.

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        MODERATE
        In law, the independence of high-level appointees is guaranteed.More about indicator

        Only two out of three criteria specified by this indicator are fulfilled. The first criterion fulfilled is that appointees have the authority or mandate to review cases and issue decisions. This is stipulated in Art. 63, par. 1) in Law 35/2008:

        “The Permanent Electoral Authority is an autonomous administrative institution, being a legal entity with general competence, which ensures the integrated implementation, within the time lapse between two electoral periods, of the legal dispositions regarding the organization and conduct of elections, or of other consultations with national or local character. The Permanent Electoral Authority shall pursue and support the endowment of the polling stations with the necessary logistics, as well as the achievement of specific operations within the time lapse between two electoral periods.”

        According to Art. 63, par. 7), the law establishes a security of tenure: “The mandate of the president and the mandates of the vice presidents of the Permanent Electoral Authority shall be of 8 years each and may be renewed only once”. However, this provision is weakened in the following paragraph where it is mentioned that the AEP president and vice-presidents can be removed by dismissal or demise:

        “The mandate of president and vice-presidents shall cease in the following instances: a) expiry of mandate; b) resignation; c) dismissal; d) demise.”

        The conditions for dismissal and demise are not objective as mentioned in par. 9): “The president and the vice presidents may be dismissed, on solid grounds, by the authorities that appointed them”. Consequently, the president can be removed by Parliament, while the two vice-presidents by the country president or prime-minister who appointed them. There is no process conducted by a peer panel or another institution.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) appointees have the authority or mandate to review cases and issue decisions, 2) the law establishes security of tenure, and 3) removal or disciplinary actions are based on due process conducted by a peer panel or independent oversight body.

        A MODERATE score is earned where appointees have the authority or mandate to review cases and issue decisions, BUT one of the second two conditions mentioned in the YES criteria is not met.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 35/2008 Law no. 35/2008 for the election to the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate (version updated by the Permanent Electoral Authority until 10 September 2012) (Legea nr. 35/2008 pentru alegerea Camerei Deputa?ilor ?i a Senatului (variant? actualizat? de Autoritatea Electoral? Permanent? pân? la data de 10.09.2012)), Art. 63, http://www.becparlamentare2012.ro/DOCUMENTE/Legislatie/legea%2035%20(1).pdf

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        50
        In practice, to what extent is the independence of high-level appointees guaranteed?More about indicator

        There is no possibility to observe the independence of AEP high-level appointees between January 2013 and July 2014. The main reason is that there were no removals, transfers, or important decisions to be taken by the AEP. There are no news reports regarding the activity of the AEP apart from the reports on party financing or its technical activities during electoral campaigns. The score is based on older behaviors and situations that are likely to be valid today because the same political parties are in Parliament and the same appointees are in office at AEP.

        Sergiu Miscoiu, political scientist and analyst, considers that it is very difficult to have an independent activity as long as the origins of high-level appointees are in political parties:

        “The president is clearly appointed after a political agreement because she has the rank of a minister. If the president is politically appointed, she cannot be independent. I remember that in previous legislative terms in office there was a political agreement between the political parties in parliament. For example, the president came from one of the government parties and one of the two vice-presidents came from one of the opposition parties. This is how parties tried to reflect in AEP the political fragmentation. The actual president is in a delicate position because she was appointed by the previous government that is now in opposition. It is very hard for me to believe that high-level appointees act independently from political parties because they come from political parties. On the one hand, they have their own sympathies and preferences. On the other hand, the technical aspect of the job determines them to limit the partisan decisions. With respect to the rest of staff working in the AEP, many of them are active in different political parties and this makes the whole process quite difficult”.

        Mihail Chiru, research fellow at Median Research Center, has the same opinion as Miscoiu but without many details: “The term in office is fixed, but since those people are brought from nowhere and appointed by one political party I do not know how independent they can be. I suspect the existence of influences, but I have no proofs in that direction”.

        Their opinions are strengthened by news reports from 2007. Gandul (2007) presents two situations. Marian Muhulet, one of the current vice-presidents was appointed by the PNL Prime Minister to replace Ionel Flescariu who acted as vice-president until then. This gesture had triggered by a decision taken one week before by the country president to replace the vice-president he appoints. In this sense, Alexandru Radu was removed and his place was taken by Ana Maria Patru. The latter became, in 2012, during the government led by the party belonging to the country president, president of the AEP. The 2007 consecutive removals and appointments had a clear political significance since the country president and prime minister were in direct conflict at the time. Through these appointments they both sought to control parts of the AEP. In both cases there was no security of tenure and the removals were decided by one person (prime-minister in one case and country president in another).

        In 2012 Patru became president of the AEP and before the 2012 legislative elections there were news reports showing the strong ties between her, the country president and his party PDL (see primary sources). After Patru became president of the AEP, the caretaker president and PNL leader, appointed one of his party collaborators as vice-president at AEP (see primary sources).


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. Cristian Preda, Romanian MEP (EPP group) concurs: “Considering that political issues de facto influence high-level appointments to the oversight authority, scandals can arise like when Alexandru Radu was removed and replaced with Ana Maria Patru.”

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where all of the following conditions are met: 1) appointees review cases and issue decisions without fear or favor from other branches of government, and 2) appointees are granted security of tenure and 3) no appointees are removed, disciplined or transferred without due process by a peer panel or independent oversight body.

        A 50 score is earned where any of the following conditions apply: 1) appointees generally operate without fear or favor from other branches of government but exceptions exist, or 2) some but not all appointees are granted security of tenure, or 3) appointees are occasionally removed, disciplined or transferred without due process by a peer panel or independent oversight body.

        A 0 score is earned where at least one of the following conditions apply: 1) appointees operate with fear or favor from other branches of government, or 2) are not granted security of tenure, or 3) are usually removed, disciplined or transferred without observing due process by a peer panel or independent oversight body.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014. 2. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Jurnalul National, Crin Antonescu appointed Dan Vlaicu, former ANPC president, as vice-president of the AEP, 3 August 2012, http://jurnalul.ro/stiri/politica/antonescu-l-a-numit-pe-dan-vlaicu-fost-presedinte-anpc-in-functia-vicepresedinte-al-aep-620087.html

        Jurnalul National, Master of the Lists. Basescu’s Man rules the Permanent Electoral Authority. Who is Ana Maria Patru, 3 august 2012, http://jurnalul.ro/stiri/observator/stapana-listelor-omul-lui-basescu-conduce-autoritatea-electorala-permanenta-cine-este-ana-maria-patru-620095.html

        Secondary sources: Gandul, “In AEP only Opris kept his position”, 9 March 2007, http://www.gandul.info/politica/la-aep-si-a-mai-pastrat-functia-doar-opris-282956

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Cristian Preda, Professor of Political Science, Romanian MEP (EEP Group), 19 September 2014.

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        --
        Open Question: How does decision-making work in the oversight authority?More about indicator

        The AEP makes decisions within the framework of consensual decisions that take place within a Consultative College.

        According to Art. 63 in Law 35/2008, the AEP decision body consists of one president, two vice-presidents (par. 5) and one general secretary (par. 12). These four persons form the Consultative College (Art. 5 from the Regulation of the Organization and Functioning of the AEP). This Council meets on a monthly basis or whenever summoned by the AEP president. Art. 5 par. 5 and 6 refer to College’s activities:

        “(5) To fulfil the AEP’s tasks the Consultative College discusses decisions, instructions, and statements that are signed by the president and counter-signed by vice-presidents. (6) The Consultative College can discuss other problems of significance for the Romanian electoral system and for the good functioning of the institution.”

        Marian Muhulet, vice-president of the AEP, explained that decisions within the Consultative College are always taken by consensus, there is no voting involved.

        Scoring Criteria

        Please describe: 1) the composition of the decision-making body within the oversight authority, 2) the type of decisions it's allowed to make and makes in practice, and 3) in which cases majority is required. If there have been well substantiated complaints about the decision-making process being ineffective or politicized please explain.

        Sources
        1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014.
        2. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014

        Primary sources: Law no. 35/2008 Law no. 35/2008 for the election to the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate (version updated by the Permanent Electoral Authority until 10 September 2012) (Legea nr. 35/2008 pentru alegerea Camerei Deputa?ilor ?i a Senatului (variant? actualizat? de Autoritatea Electoral? Permanent? pân? la data de 10.09.2012)), Art. 63, http://www.becparlamentare2012.ro/DOCUMENTE/Legislatie/legea%2035%20(1).pdf Regulation of the Organization and Functioning of the AEP, last accessed 29 July 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/prezentare/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/index12.html

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        44
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        50
        In practice, to what extent does the authority have sufficient capacity to monitor political finance regulations?More about indicator

        In an interview from November 2013, Ana Maria Patru, the AEP president complained that the AEP is under-staffed. According to her, “We are a small institution. We have officially 250 positions but for more than 5 years we have to function with only half of the staff. Our presence at national level is affected because we cannot create county offices to coordinate and administer elections in every county” (Badea 2013).

        In the interview conducted for this study, Muhulet, the AEP vice-president mentioned the same problem. From what he says that current staff works more than it should, but that the under-staffing problem does not affect their activity to a great extent:

        “We need more staff. When it comes to the budget, I would say it is OK relative to the staff we have at the moment. I would prefer to have at least one-two persons to conduct our activities in every county. Consequently, the budget allocated to human resources should increase for this category of staff. At the moment we have a central structure that investigates this issue – The Department for the Control of Political Party Financing and Electoral Campaigns – and two people working on this issue in each of our eight regional branches. And those persons have to move around in all the counties belonging to that regional branch.” There are 41 counties plus Bucharest, there is an average of 5 counties/regional branch.

        Mihail Chiru, the research fellow from Median Research Center, considers that the low number of employees in the AEP has a negative effect on the monitoring activity. When asked about violations of laws regarding the political financing he answered, “I believe that in general it is quite difficult to identify such a situation because the AEP is under-staffed, it has very few people to check all candidates. And then it is very hard to believe they are very efficient in discovering such cases (… ) It is probably a problem with the budget since they do not afford to hire new people to check things. An effective authority should have more employees to be able to check all these reports, to make systematic investigations at parties – I know they make them, but there are only a few.”


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree. Alexandra Iancu, political scientist and analyst, agrees: “First the authority has too many functions: drafting proposals and new regulations, disseminating information, policy briefs, training, oversight functions, organizing electoral events etc. The overall structure of the institution is overcrowded with administrative personnel, whereas experts remain underrepresented. It is difficult to presume that the authority could actually function as an efficient monitoring agency unveiling the parties' hidden funds, the accurate sums of money spent during the electoral campaigns, etc. AEP lacks the authority, the administrative capacity, and the know-how for conducting substantial investigations on the main challenges to campaign and party financing good practices (in terms of identifying criminal offences - such as electoral bribes or financial engineering)."

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) the authority has sufficient budget to monitor all incoming reports, and 2) it has sufficient staff to review all incoming reports.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) the authority has insufficient budget to monitor all incoming reports, or 2) its staff can only review half of all incoming reports.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) the authority can't fulfill most of its essential functions due to budget constraints, or 2) its staff only has the capacity to review 25% or less of all incoming reports.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 2. Mihail Chiru, research fellow, Median Research Center, 24 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Camelia Badea, “Ana Maria Patru (AEP): We have to introduce IT equipment at the polls”, 4 Nov. 2013, http://www.ziare.com/alegeri/alegeri-europarlamentare-2014/ana-maria-patru-aep-trebuie-sa-informatizam-sectiile-de-votare-interviu-1265914

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September 2014.

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        45
        Score
        100
        In practice, to what extent does the authority conduct investigations or audits when necessary?More about indicator

        The AEP cannot conduct audits because this is a task that belong to the Romanian Court of Audit. The two institutions work together to establish the extent to which political parties comply with existing regulations. The AEP conducts investigations on a yearly basis. During electoral campaigns they make investigations only on demand as explained by vice-president Muhulet during the interview. He said that investigations and controls are made whenever AEP receives complaints about various aspects related to electoral processes or party financing. The reason for acting only after receiving a complaint is related to the low number of staff in the territory. When asked about the investigations during the electoral campaign for European elections his answer was :

        “Usually, we do not receive too many complaints in this type of elections. Political parties either do not want to report anything about their competitors or do not have anything to report. Usually the complaints we get are related to electoral posters and the mandatory printing of certain issues on the electoral posters according to the legal provisions: publishing house, the name of the electoral competitor for which they were printed etc. (…) Investigations about the party financing take place both at central and local level where our regional staff undertakes them”. Bogdanel (2012, see list of sources) explains in detail how the AEP acted in the 2012 local elections when they investigated the printing of campaign materials that did not comply with the legal requirements.

        Sergiu Miscoiu said that the number of controls and investigations became systematic in the recent period. According to him the AEP organizes an increasing number of events with a critical attitude towards the electoral law or transparency of financing for political parties.

        In May 2014, together with the European elections, in some districts there were organized early parliamentary elections for the Chamber of Deputies and Senate. During the latter the AEP conducted investigations to check the correctness of accounts and the legality of payments made during campaign. The investigation targeted all nine electoral competitors and the report is mentioned in the field for sources. The report found no problems. A similar control was made for 22 competitors in the European elections (see sources) and the conclusion was that accounts and payments were correct and legal. Regular controls are made at the local branches of political parties and the reports are summarized on the AEP website (see the last entry in the primary sources).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where the authority conducted at least three investigations or audits during the most recent electoral campaign.

        A 50 score is earned where the authority conducted at least one investigation or audit during the most recent electoral campaign.

        A 0 score is earned where the authority didn't conduct any investigation or audit during the most recent electoral campaign.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 2. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014.

        Primary sources: AEP, Decision regarding the correctness of accounts and the legality of payments during the electoral campaign for early elections for the Chamber of Deputies and Senate in 25 May 2014, 21 July 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Hotarare-partiale-parlamentare.pdf AEP, Decision regarding the correctness of accounts and the legality of payments during the electoral campaign for European elections in 25 May 2014, 21 July 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Hotarare-europarlamentare.pdf AEP, “Summary of the reports about the controls made at political parties in March 2014, 19 May 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/articole-control/extrase-ale-rapoartelor-privind-rezultatele-controalelor-efectuate-la-partidele-politice-in-luna-martie-2014/

        Secondary sources: Lucian Bogdanel, “AEP checks the financing sources from Stavarache’s campaign”, Desteptarea, 24 July 2012, http://www.desteptarea.ro/autoritatea-electorala-permanenta-verifica-sursele-de-finantare-din-campania-lui-stavarache/

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        46
        Score
        75
        In practice, to what extent does the authority publish the results of investigations or audits?More about indicator

        AEP publishes the results of its investigations either in the form of a report or in the form of a press release. It is difficult to estimate if these are published in less than a month after conclusion because we hardly know when they are concluded. Using the example of documents from item 45 (the investigations for correctness and legality of accounts and payments for the 25 May 2014 elections), they were published on 21 July 2014. Given the large amount of competitors (9 + 22) it is likely that investigations were concluded not earlier than end of June and thus the report is available in less than a month. Also, AEP published on 30 April the results of investigations of political parties conducted in March (all included on the website mentioned in the resources field).

        Marian Muhulet explained that the results of investigations “are communicate to both sides involved in the process – the one that required and the one that was investigated – and they are included in the general report that the Department makes after each electoral campaign. This report is released on a yearly basis, at the end of the year. All reports are available on the website”. Also, Muhulet mentioned that results of controls and investigations are published in the Official Gazette, Part I, as soon as the investigation is completed, but this was not confirmed by any other source.

        Sergiu Miscoiu pointed at the review published by the AEP (Expert Electoral, see sources) as a place where reports are also made available to the public. The review has a section called “Reports, Syntheses and Briefings” that includes some of their findings. Due to the quarterly appearance of the review, findings are usually reported more than one month after the conclusion of investigation (unless the investigation was finalized around the publication date).

        In light of this information, it results that some reports of investigations are published in less than a month, while others are included in the annual report that is published several months after elections organized in spring (but immediately after the legislative and presidential that are at the end of the fall). Also, some findings are presented in the AEP’s review published on a quarterly basis (see sources).

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where the authority publishes reports of all its investigations or audits a month or less after their conclusion.

        A 50 score is earned where reports are available to the public more than a month after the conclusion of the investigation or audit.

        A 0 score is earned where reports are not available to the public or they become available after six months or more after conclusion of the investigation or audit. A 0 score is also earned where only summaries of the reports are publicly available.

        Sources

        Interviews: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014. 2. Sergiu Miscoiu, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj, 23 July 2014.

        Primary sources Website AEP, 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/.

        Expert Electoral, the review published by AEP (quarterly since 2013), http://www.roaep.ro/prezentare/en/stire/expert-electoral-revista-de-studii-analize-si-cercetari-electorale-editata-de-aep/

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      Enforcement Capabilities
      More about category
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        47
        Score
        YES
        In law, there are sanctions in response to political finance violations.More about indicator

        Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) clearly defines violations and sanctions for each of these violations. In this sense, Art. 41 is exhaustive:

        “ (1) The infringement of the provisions of the articles below represents an offence, unless committed in such a way as to constitute a crime, according to the criminal law, and they shall be sanctioned by fines between RON 5,000 ($1, 506 USD) and RON 25,000 ($7, 534 USD): art. 3, paragraphs 2 and 3, art. 4, paragraphs 3 and 4, art. 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, art. 10, paragraphs 2 and 3, art. 11, paragraphs 1 and 3, art. 12, paragraphs 1 and 3, art. 13, paragraphs 1 and 2, art. 20, paragraph 2, art. 23, art. 24, paragraph 1, art. 25, paragraphs 1 and 2, art. 26, paragraphs 1, 2 and 7, art. 29, paragraphs 2-4 and 6, art. 30, paragraphs 2 and 3, art. 31, 38 and art. 39, paragraph 2. (2) The sanctions can be applied, if case be, to the political party, independent candidate, financial agent and/ or donor in breach of the provisions stipulated under paragraph 1.

        Also, art. 36, par. 3) complements these sanctions and refers to more severe punishments in the form of jail sentence (the first two paragraphs are also copied to better understand the context of punishment):

        “(1) The Permanent Electoral Authority shall check annually and whenever notified the compliance of each party with the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties. (2) The Permanent Electoral Authority can be notified by any person providing evidence regarding the breach of the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties. (3) Any false statements made by the person stipulated under paragraph 2 regarding the breach of the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties shall represent a crime and it shall be punished with 1 to 3 year jail sentence.”

        Government Decision no. 749/2007 on approving the Methodological Norms for applying Law no. 334/2006 on financing activities of political parties and electoral campaigns includes the procedural steps for sanctions’ application (chapter 7).

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) the law clearly defines violations of political finance laws, and 2) there are clearly defined sanctions for specific violations.

        A MODERATE score is earned where violations are clearly defined but sanctions for specific violations are not.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 36 and 41, http://www.euroavocatura.ro/print2.php?print2=lege&idItem=756

        Government Decision no. 749/2007 on approving the Methodological Norms for applying Law no. 334/2006 on financing activities of political parties and electoral campaigns (Hot?rârea Guvernului nr. 749/2007 pentru aprobarea Normelor metodologice de aplicare a Legii nr. 334/2006 privind finan?area activit??ii partidelor politice ?i a campaniilor electorale, cu modific?rile ?i complet?rile ulterioare. Text actualizat de Autoritatea electorala permanenta) . Relevant articles: chapter 7,available at: http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Hot%C4%83r%C3%A2rea-nr.749-din-2007.pdf

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        48
        Score
        YES
        In law, the oversight authority has the power to impose sanctions.More about indicator

        Law 334/2006 (applicable to all national level elections) gives the oversight authority (AEP) the power to impose sanctions. Art. 42, par. 1) and Art. 43, par. 1 and 2) read as follows:

        “(1) In the cases indicated under art. 41, paragraph 1, the offender shall pay to the state budget the amounts of money and/ or the equivalent value of the goods and services which represented the object of the offence in case, based on the decision of the Permanent Electoral Authority.”

        Art. 43: “(1) The offences stipulated under art. 41 shall be established by the representatives of the Permanent Electoral Authority and the sanction shall be applied by decision of the same. (2) The decision of the Permanent Electoral Authority can be appealed against before the competent court, according to the lawful provisions.”

        The law does not explicitly stipulate that the AEP can directly prosecute violators before the courts or can send cases to public prosecution. However, in light of Art. 36, the crimes identified by the AEP are punishable with jail sentence (par. 3)). Since this provision is made in strong connection with other prerogatives of the AEP and no other institution is mentioned, it is safe to assume that the AEP can send cases to public prosecution:

        “(1) The Permanent Electoral Authority shall check annually and whenever notified the compliance of each party with the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties. (2) The Permanent Electoral Authority can be notified by any person providing evidence regarding the breach of the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties. (3) Any false statements made by the person stipulated under paragraph 2 regarding the breach of the lawful provisions on the financing of political parties shall represent a crime and it shall be punished with 1 to 3 year jail sentence.”


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree - The law does not explicitly stipulate that the AEP can directly prosecute violators before the courts, but like the Court of Account, the AEP can notify the police or the prosecutor’s office on possible breaches of the law.

        Scoring Criteria

        A YES score is earned where: 1) the oversight authority has the power to impose sanctions, and 2) it can directly prosecute violators before the courts or is independent to send cases to public prosecution.

        A MODERATE score is earned where the oversight authority has the power to impose sanctions, but it can't directly prosecute violators before the courts or is not independent to send cases to public prosecution.

        A NO score is earned where no such law exists.

        Sources

        Law no. 334/2006 on the financing of electoral campaigns and the activity of political parties. Republished in the Official Gazette, Part 1 from 22 July 2007 (Legea nr. 334/2006 privind finantarea activitatii partidelor politice si a campaniilor electorale Republicata in Monitorul Oficial, Partea I nr. 510 din 22/07/2010), Art. 36, 42 and 43, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/articole-legislatie/item-2-legislatie/

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        49
        Score
        50
        In practice, to what extent do offenders comply with sanctions imposed?More about indicator

        There is scarce information about the compliance of offenders with the sanctions imposed by AEP. There is no news story or report reflecting these issues, as all reports are about the sanctions imposed (not about what happens after). Statements made by the AEP vice president were double-checked with legal sources and the conclusion is that offenders comply with all but a small share of sanctions; at the same time, there are many repeat offenders. The sanctions to which political parties do not comply, usually the ones involving fines, are contested in Court. If the decision rules against the offender, they will pay. Muhulet said:

        “The sanctions we applied until now range between warning and financial sanctions. The highest financial sanctions was 25,000 RON (i.e. 7,500 USD) together with the confiscation of an amount of approximately 50,000 EUR (…) Sanctions are complied with to a very large extent with the exception of those contested in Court. Usually the financial sanctions are contested in Court. But that is only 10% of all sanctions”.

        Following this interview, the existence of proofs for compliance or against compliance was investigated. In the absence of any references, contestations against the AEP sanctions were analyzed. In this sense, Decision no. 2888/2013 and Decision no. 1007/2014 (see sources) confirm what the AEP vice-president said – they contest the financial aspect of the sanction. The absence of similar contestations strengthens the idea expressed by Muhulet that only a small share are contested.

        The repeat offenders can be illustrated with an example. The political party is the offender and its territorial organizations are the instances of offense. Antoniu (2013) shows that financial sanctions (5,000 RON ($1,506 USD)) were repeatedly applied to the PDL Galati and PDL Cluj organizations.

        Scoring Criteria

        A 100 score is earned where: 1) offenders comply with the sanctions imposed without exception, and 2) they are not repeat offenders.

        A 50 score is earned where: 1) offenders usually comply with the sanctions imposed but exceptions exist, or 2) most are not repeat offenders but some exceptions exist.

        A 0 score is earned where: 1) offenders rarely comply with the sanctions imposed, or 2) most are repeat offenders.

        Sources

        Interview: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Gabriela Antoniu, “AEP sanctioned two PDL organizations with 5,000 RON for breaking the law on party financing”, 18 April 2013, http://rnews.ro/aep-a-amendat-doua-organizatii-ale-pdl-cu-5000-de-lei-pentru-incalcarea-legislatiei-privind-finantarea_19103.html

        High Court of Justice and Cassation, Contestation against the AEP Sanction, Decision no. 2888/27 May 2013, http://www.scj.ro/SC%20rezumate%202013/SC%20I%20dec%20r%202888%202013.htm

        High Court of Justice and Cassation, Decision no. 1007/ 27 Feb. 2014, http://legeaz.net/spete-contencios-inalta-curte-iccj-2014/decizia-1007-2014

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        50
        Score
        --
        Open Question: How strong is enforcement, and what impedes more effective enforcement?More about indicator

        Enforcement appears to be effective and efficient in the majority of cases.

        Marian Muhulet, vice-president of the AEP, argues that the enforcement is strong, effective and efficient:

        “I do not know if this question about strong enforcement is appropriate. Political parties got used to controls, they are aware about the existence of well-defined controls in law. Also, the GRECO assessment did not have much to say about the Romanian legal framework. Political parties have become aware that if they break the law they will be immediately sanctioned both in terms of sanctions or even crime. In this sense political parties understood that they should hire professionals in charge with financial management. This strengthens the idea that rule enforcement is high. The Department of Control started its activity in 2007 and since then we were positioned on an ascendant slope in our relationship with political parties. We overcome the phase in which basic education was required and the dialogue we currently have with party representatives on issues related to financing is very advanced. The process of enforcement is both effective and efficient. The efficiency is due to the existence of the same legislation for almost eight years. The marginal amendments of legislation made it easy for political parties and individual candidates to obey the rules. The things we discover and sanction are more exceptions than rules.”

        The AEP controls appears to be quite effective. For example, the excerpts from their controls in March 2014 (see sources) indicate that many sanctions were applied after controls. These sanctions were applied to various political parties, including to those that appointed the AEP president and vice-presidents. Controls were made at county organizations and sanctions were applied, for example, to PDL Bucharest, PNL Teleorman, PNL Valcea, PSD Dolj, Conservative Party Bucharest etc. News reports confirm the statement of Muhulet. Adevarul (2014) presents the sanctions given by AEP to five political parties at the beginning of this year after the controls made at the end of 2013. It apAEPrs that the AEP is effective in enforcing the law since it sanctioned the main governing party (PSD) and the party that appointed Patru as president of the AEP (PDL). Regarding the latter, Antoniu (2013) presents the case of two PDL county organizations sanctioned by the AEP in 2013 with fines for breaking the law on party financing.

        With respect to areas of reform in the Romanian finance system, Muhulet considers that the 13 recommendations formulated by GRECO should be included in a new law. With respect to the law on party financing these recommendations include: harsher sanctions of parties that break the law, better regulation of in-kind donations, regulation of third-party actors, and regulation of loans during electoral campaign. All these measures are likely to increase the effectiveness of enforcement.


        Peer reviewer comment: Agree -The AEP exerts an increasingly meaningful and effective supervision of enforcement of political finance regulation.

        Cristian Preda, Romanian MEP (EPP group) shares this opinion: “Romanian politicians and parties got used to controls, reports and audits. There are still weaknesses to be solved in relation to the differences between the real budgets candidates and party and what they officially spend in the financial statements pertaining to election campaigns”.

        Moreover, as Alexandra Iancu rightly stressed at a previous point: " the authority has too many functions: drafting proposals and new regulations, disseminating information, policy briefs, training, oversight functions, organizing electoral events etc.” In order to guarantee a stronger enforcement, PEA should reduce the exclusive competencies and increase others, in particular the administrative capacity for investigating campaign financing and party financing beyond the formal screening. Specific prosecutorial competencies could be a solution."

        Scoring Criteria

        Please provide a general explanation of the effectiveness of enforcement, describing: 1) any conditions that may prevent effective enforcement, and 2) explain what are the most urgent areas of reform in the country's political finance system.

        Sources

        Interview: 1. Marian Muhulet, vice-president, Permanent Electoral Authority, 24 July 2014.

        Primary sources: Adevarul, “PDL, PSD, PPDD, PER, PRM: Sanctioned with fines for breaking the party law financing, 28 January 2014, http://adevarul.ro/news/politica/pdl-psd-ppdd-per-prm-amendate-incalcarea-legii-finantarii-partidelor-152e7d3a8c7b855ff56e0159f/index.html AEP, “Excerpts of reports about the results of controls made at political parties in march 2014, 19 May 2014, http://www.roaep.ro/finantare/articole-control/extrase-ale-rapoartelor-privind-rezultatele-controalelor-efectuate-la-partidele-politice-in-luna-martie-2014/ Gabriela Antoniu, “AEP sanctioned two PDL organizations with 5,000 RON for breaking the law on party financing”, 18 April 2013, http://rnews.ro/aep-a-amendat-doua-organizatii-ale-pdl-cu-5000-de-lei-pentru-incalcarea-legislatiei-privind-finantarea19103.html

        Reviewer's sources: Interview with Cristian Preda, Professor of Political Science, Romanian MEP (EEP Group), 19 September 2014. Interview with Alexandra Iancu, Lecturer of Comparative Politics, University of Bucharest, 18-19 September 2014.

Romania has a semi-presidential, bicameral parliamentary system. In 2008, the closed-list proportional system for both chambers of the Parliament in 42 constituencies was changed. Members of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate are currently elected by direct popular vote in single-member electoral districts on the basis of mixed member proportional representation (Law no. 35/2008). The 42 counties of Romania (41 administrative counties and one for Bucharest metropolitan area) represent the electoral constituencies and are further divided into single-member districts with the ratio of 70.000 inhabitants for every Deputy and 160.000 inhabitants for every Senator. In 2008, a 43rd constituency was added for the representation of Romanians living abroad.

There are currently 176 Senators and 412 Deputies, but the total numbers of each fluctuate at each new election. According to the Constitution of Romania (art. 62, par. 2) and the law 35/2008 (art. 9 par.1) the organizations of citizens belonging to national minorities, which fail to obtain the number of votes for representation in Parliament, have the right to 1 seat each in the Chamber of Deputies. Citizens of a national minority are entitled to be represented by one organization only. The representation of minorities has been granted since 1990.

The head of state is the President, who is elected for a five year term in a two round system (after a change from four-year terms after the 2004 election). If the leading candidate does not receive 50% of the vote +1 during the first round of an election, there is a run-off between the top two vote-getters (Constitution of Romania, art.81, par. 2, 3, law no 370/2004 for the election of the President, art. 1, par. 2, 3, 4). Art 81.4 of the Constitution (art. 81, par. 4) limits an elected president to two terms in office. In all types of elections, campaign funds are typically controlled by the parties.

The most recent legislative elections in Romania took place in 2012. The Social Liberal Union (USL) won both houses of Parliament, followed by the Right Romania Alliance (ARD) and the People's Party (PP-DD). Presidential elections occurred in November 2014, but these elections fall outside of the period of study for this report.