Constitution

Finland 1999 Constitution (reviewed 2011)

Table of Contents

Chapter 7. State finances

Section 81. State taxes and charges

The state tax is governed by an Act, which shall contain provisions on the grounds for tax liability and the amount of the tax, as well as on the legal remedies available to the persons or entities liable to taxation.

The general criteria governing the charges to be levied on the official functions, services and other activities of State authorities and on the amount of the charges are laid down by an Act.

Section 82. State debt and guarantees

The incurrence of State debt shall be based on the consent of the Parliament, which indicates the maximum level of new debt or the total level of State debt.

A State security and a State guarantee may be given on the basis of the consent of the Parliament.

Section 83. State budget

The Parliament decides on the State budget for one budgetary year at a time. It is published in the Statute Book of Finland.

The government proposal concerning the State budget and the other proposals pertaining to it shall be submitted to the Parliament well in advance of the next budgetary year. The provisions in section 71 apply to the supplementation and withdrawal of the budget proposal.

A Representative may, on the basis of the budget proposal, through a budgetary motion initiate a proposal for an appropriation or other decision to be included in the State budget.

Once the pertinent report of the Finance Committee of the Parliament has been issued, the budget is adopted in a single reading in a plenary session of the Parliament. More detailed provisions on the consideration of the budget proposal in the Parliament are laid down in the Parliament’s Rules of Procedure.

If the publication of the State budget is delayed beyond the new budgetary year, the budget proposal of the Government shall be applied as a provisional budget in a manner decided by the Parliament.

Section 84. Contents of the budget

Estimates of the annual revenues and appropriations for the annual expenditures of the State, the reasons for the appropriations and other justifications of the budget shall be included in the State budget. It may be provided by an Act that, for certain revenues and expenditures immediately linked one to another, a revenue forecast or appropriation corresponding to their difference may be included in the budget.

The revenue forecasts in the budget shall cover the appropriations included in it. When covering the appropriations, the surplus or deficit in the State’s final accounts may be taken into account, as provided by an Act.

The revenue forecasts or appropriations pertaining to linked revenues and expenditures may be included in the budget for several budgetary years, as provided by an Act.

The general principles on the functions and finances of state enterprises are laid down by an Act. As regards state enterprises, revenue forecasts or appropriations are taken into the budget only in so far as they are provided by an Act. When considering the budget, the Parliament approves the most important service objectives and other objectives of state enterprises.

Section 85. Appropriations in the budget

The appropriations are taken up in the budget as fixed appropriations, estimated appropriations or transferable appropriations. An estimated appropriation may be exceeded and a transferable appropriation transferred to be used in later budgetary years, as provided by an Act. A fixed appropriation and a transferable appropriation shall not be exceeded nor a fixed appropriation transferred, unless this has been allowed by an Act.

An appropriation shall not be moved from one budget item to another, unless this has been allowed in the budget. However, the transfer of an appropriation to a budget item to which its use is closely linked may be allowed by an Act.

An authorisation, limited in its amount and purpose, may be given in the budget for the incurrence of expenditure, the appropriations for which are to be taken from budgets of following budgetary years.

Section 86. Supplementary budget

A proposal of the Government for a supplementary budget shall be submitted to the Parliament, if there is a justified reason for amending the budget.

A Representative may submit budgetary motions for a budget amendment immediately linked to the supplementary budget.

Section 87. Extra-budgetary funds

An extra-budgetary fund may be created by an Act, if the performance of a permanent duty of the State requires this in an essential manner. However, the decision of the Parliament to adopt a legislative proposal for the creation of an extra-budgetary fund or the extension of such a fund or its purpose must be supported by at least two thirds of the votes cast.

Section 88. Legitimate receivables from the State to private parties

Regardless of the budget, everyone has the right to collect his or her legitimate receivables from the State.

Section 89. Approval of the terms of service of State officials and employees

The appropriate Committee of the Parliament accepts, in the name of the Parliament, agreements on the terms of service of State officials and employees, in so far as this requires the consent of the Parliament.

Section 90. Supervision and audit of State finances

The Parliament supervises State finances and compliance with the State budget. For this purpose, the Parliament shall have an Audit Committee. The Audit Committee shall report any significant supervisory findings to the Parliament. (596/2007, entry into force 1.6.2007)

For the purpose of auditing State finances and compliance with the State budget, there shall be an independent National Audit Office in connection with the Parliament. More detailed provisions on the status and duties of the National Audit Office are laid down by an Act.

The Audit Committee and the National Audit Office have the right to receive information needed for the performance of their duties from public authorities and other entities that are subject to their control. (596/2007, entry into force 1.6.2007)

Section 91. The Bank of Finland

The Bank of Finland operates under the guarantee and supervision of the Parliament, as provided by an Act. For the purpose of supervising the operations of the Bank of Finland, the Parliament elects its governors.

The appropriate Committee of the Parliament and the governors have the right to receive the information needed for the supervision of the operations of the Bank of Finland.

Section 92. State assets

Provisions on the competence and procedure in the use of shareholder authority in companies effectively controlled by the State are laid down by an Act. Provisions on the necessity for the consent of the Parliament for the acquisition or relinquishment of effective control by the State in a company are likewise laid down by an Act.

State real estate may be conveyed only with the consent of the Parliament or as provided by an Act.

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