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Campaign for citizens-friendly European Citizens' Initiative

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  • Andrius Kulikauskas
    Hi John (Cyfranogi), Pamela (at Learning From Each Other), Franz (at Global Villages) and especially Maria Agnese Giraudo, I share a letter which I wrote about
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 24, 2010
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      Hi John (Cyfranogi), Pamela (at Learning From Each Other), Franz (at
      Global Villages) and especially Maria Agnese Giraudo,
      I share a letter which I wrote about a signature campaign for an
      important step in European Democracy. Andrius
      -------------------------------------------

      I learned from Avaaz.org
      http://www.avaaz.org/en/eu_citizens_initiative/
      about the Campaign for a citizens-friendly European Citizens' Initiative
      http://www.citizens-initiative.eu/?page_id=2
      My impression from COMMUNIA is that certain reforms on behalf of the
      Public Domain can take place within the existing system, but other
      reforms require reforming the European Union.

      The European Citizens' Initiative is an innovation included in the
      Treaty of Lisbon that enables 1,000,000 EU citizens to call directly on
      the EU Commision to bring forward an initiative of interest to them in
      an area of EU competence.

      The EU is negotiating a draft of the process. The Campaign seeks to
      make the process user-friendly by:
      * clarifying how the EU Commission is to follow up to successful initiatives
      * simplifying the signature form and not requiring collection of ID numbers
      * not requiring 100,000 signatures to collected before the EU does its
      legal admissibility check
      * allowing citizen initiatives to propose treaty amendments, just as the
      EU Commission may
      * extending the time period for collecting signatures from 12 months to
      18-24 months
      * reducing from 9 to 5 the number of member states from which the
      signatures must come
      * providing basic support to initiative organizers, such as legal
      advice, translation of the text into all 21 European official languages,
      travel vouchers and free meeting spaces
      http://www.citizens-initiative.eu/?p=272

      The EU provides itself with enormous resources to maintain its bureaucracy.

      It makes sense to me that requirements on citizen initiatives be neither
      too heavy nor too light. If they are too heavy, then only well funded
      corporate interests will use the process. If they are too light, then
      they will attract spurious, deceptive and confusing initiatives, which
      may also be driven by corporate interests, as happens at times in the
      California ballot process. But overall, I'd rather err on the
      requirements being too light than too heavy, and I think that currently
      they are too heavy.

      I'm glad that so many people care about the citizens' initiative
      process. Avaaz.org is collecting signatures at
      http://www.avaaz.org/en/eu_citizens_initiative/
      To all EU Member States, Members of the European Parliament and the
      President of the European Commission:
      As European citizens who want to engage in European politics, we call on
      you to adopt effective regulations for the European Citizens' Initiative
      (ECI). Initiatives should be given enough time (18 months), and they
      should not require signatures from more than one-fifth of the Member
      States. Demanding ID or passport numbers from signers is an unnecessary
      hurdle that should be avoided. Citizens must be able to present
      initiatives in a public hearing with the Commission. The ECI must
      encourage and facilitate citizen participation.

      I have signed and I encourage others in Europe to sign as well.

      Andrius

      Andrius Kulikauskas
      Minciu Sodas
      http://www.ms.lt
      ms@...
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