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Mexico: Federal Senators Seek Transparency of Allocated Financial Resources

(Feb. 18, 2014) Senators of Mexico’s Institutional Revolutionary Party (Partido Revolucionario Institucional, PRI), National Action Party (Partido Acción Nacional, PAN), Party of the Democratic Revolution (Partido de la Revolución Democrática, PRD), and Ecological Green Party of Mexico (Partido Verde Ecologista de Mexico, PVEM) will propose a new regulation on transparency of the Senate aimed at forcing the Senate to make public twice a year the funding it provides to parliamentary groups. (Claudia Guerrero & Leslie Gómez, Busca Senado Exhibir Gasto Cada Semestre [The Senate Seeks to Disclose Expenses Each Semester], REFORMA (Feb. 12, 2014), available online by subscription.)

According to the draft legislation, new obligations of transparency would be imposed on the Senate’s Board (Mesa Directiva), Political Coordination Board (Junta de Coordinación Política), and parliamentary groups, which must make public on their websites the allocation of their resources and keep that information up to date. Lawmakers have not made public the allocation of their resources despite an agreement they had approved and signed in August 2013. (Id.)

Under the proposal, Senate bodies and parliamentary groups will also be required to disclose the names of staff working for them and their salaries, service contracts, the purpose of the contracts, and their duration. Because there have been scandals involving the hiring of certain advisers, the legislators would also have to make public the value of personal services provided.

The proposal sets forth sanctions for breach of the obligations imposed by the regulation; recurrent violations would be considered a serious breach. The penalties for violation of the regulation would be applied by the Senate’s Internal Comptroller. (Id.)