Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The true costs

Democracy is not worth a bean in the European Parliament, but the President of the Parliament, Hans Gert Pottering has just told MEPs who voted for more transparency on the EU Constitution which has just been approved by MEPs that their parents should be ashamed of them.

Well, I'd rather a child of mine was a traffic warden than a Pro EU, anti democracy MEP.

Anyway, further to moans and whining from MEPs like Archbishop Richard Corbett, smuggly sitting in the hemicycle at the moment having played his part in handing over yet more of our sovereignty, here is why Roll Call Votes cost money:

1. Figures provided by the Printing Unit (printing of provisional version in hard copy):
Cost of paper plus cost of printing (one double-sided sheet (= two pages)):
€15.02 / 1000 sheets, i.e. €0.015 for a single copy
Printing: 935 copies
Total per roll-call vote: €0.015 x 935 = €14.025

2. Figures provided by the Official Journal Unit (publication in the OJ):
Total publishing costs (CD ROM, EurLex database, etc.)
1 page: €12
1 roll-call vote: 12 x 1.5 = €18 / 12 x 2 = €24. Reasonable average: €20
In 22 languages: 20 x 22, i.e. €440 per roll-call vote

3. Approximate total cost of a roll-call vote:
€440 + €14 = ± €454

So the cost, as I said before, comes from bits of paper being printed when they don't need to be. Just another excuse to avoid the people at home knowing what you're up to, eh, Richard? And by 'home' I mean where you are elected from, not where you actually live.

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