More room for maneuver for debtors, less plastic

More room for maneuver for debtors, less plastic

Not just corona: the bundesrat has passed a series of resolutions – on electoral reform for the bundestag and tougher sanctions for deputies. But there will also be relief for pandemic-stricken citizens, as the state chamber decided at its meeting on friday in berlin.

Disposable plastic: from july 2021, disposable plastic articles will no longer be allowed to be sold. This applies, for example, to drinking straws, cutlery, plates, watch sticks, balloon holders and cotton swabs. The bundesrat cleared the way for the implementation of the EU-wide ban in germany as well. From july 2021, beverage cups and food containers made of styrofoam will also be taboo. The goal is to avoid unnecessary plastic waste.

Pawn protection: indebted consumers are given more opportunities to save money in a so-called pawn protection account. For example, the deadline for transferring unused, non-deposited credit balances was extended from one month to three months. The aim is to enable those affected to save more money than before. Bank customers can convert their checking account into a garnishment protection account, on which a credit balance of just under 1,200 euros per month may not be pawned in principle.

Sanctions for deputies: if deputies violate rules of conduct, they will face harsher sanctions in the future. You can be fined if you fail to declare donations or violate the ban on accepting unauthorized donations. In addition, members of parliament can be penalized in the future if they use employees for tasks that have nothing to do with the bundestag, i.E. In particular for election campaign activities. Here now a particularly sharp order money of up to the height of the half annual delegate diat threatens.

Electoral law reform: a reform of electoral law is intended to slow down the growth of the bundestag, which currently has 709 members. However, there are doubts about the effectiveness. It is foreseen that the number of 299 constituencies will remain at the election in a year’s time. Overhang mandates of a party are to be partially offset against its list mandates. And if the regular size of 598 seats is exceeded, up to three overhang mandates are not to be compensated for by compensatory mandates.

SHORT-TERM PAYMENT: the federal government’s plan to extend the period during which short-time allowances can be drawn in the corona crisis meets with approval in the bundesrat. Normally, the regulations would expire at the end of the year. The period of entitlement to short-time allowance is to be extended to up to 24 months, at the most until the end of 2021 – the state chamber in berlin also spoke out in favor of this on friday. The extension is to apply to all companies with short-time work starting by the end of 2020.

PENALTIES FOR SPEEDERS: once again, the bundesrat (upper house of parliament) failed to find a compromise on fines and driving bans. The issue is a reform of the catalog of traffic fines, which has actually been in force since the end of april – but due to a formal error, the old penalties continue to apply. This also weakens new regulations for the protection of cyclists, since violations are not punished so far. Federal transport minister andreas scheuer (CSU) and the union and FDP in the states also want to weaken the stricter penalties for speeders as part of the correction, as they consider them to be disproportionate.

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