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European Citizens' Initiative (ECI)
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Upon request of the AFCO and PETI Committees, this study identifies difficulties faced by organisers when setting up and running a European Citizens' Initiative (ECI). It analyses possible solutions and proposes recommendations to improve the ECI as an effective tool for participatory democracy in the EU. The aim is to propose measures to ensure a straightforward ECI process with less costs and burdens for EU citizens. The ultimate goal is to define concrete actions to empower EU citizens to actively participate in shaping the future of Europe.
The European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) is an important instrument of participatory democracy in the European Union, allowing one million EU citizens residing in at least one quarter of the Member States to invite the Commission to submit a proposal for a legal act to implement the EU Treaties. Since the application of Regulation (EU) No 211/2011 establishing detailed procedures and conditions for the ECI, four initiatives have been successfully submitted to the Commission.
Transparency register for organisations and self-employed individuals engaged in EU policy-making and policy implementation. Parliament/Commission agreement.
When the Commission has published a citizens' initiative in the relevant register pursuant to point (a) of Article 10(1) of Regulation (EU) No 211/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 February 2011 on the citizens' initiative, the President of the European Parliament, on a proposal from the Chair of the Conference of Committee Chairs:(a) shall task a legislative committee responsible for the subject-matter according to Annex VII with organising the public hearing provided for in Article 11 of Regulation (EU) No 211/2011; the committee responsible for petitions shall be automatically associated with the legislative committee under Rule 50;(b) may, where two or more citizens' initiatives published in the relevant register pursuant to point (a) of Article 10(1) of Regulation (EU) No 211/2011 have a similar subject-matter, decide, after consulting the organisers, that a joint public hearing is to be organised at which all of the citizens' initiatives involved shall be dealt with on an equal footing.2. The committee responsible:(a) shall ascertain whether the Commission has received the organisers at an appropriate level in accordance with point (b) of Article 10(1) of Regulation (EU) No 211/2011;(b) shall ensure, if necessary with the support of the Conference of Committee Chairs, that the Commission is properly involved in organising the public hearing and that it is represented at an appropriate level at the hearing.3. The chair of the committee responsible shall convene the public hearing at an appropriate date within three months of the submission of the initiative to the Commission pursuant to Article 9 of Regulation (EU) No 211/2011.4. The committee responsible shall organise the public hearing at Parliament, if appropriate together with such other institutions and bodies of the Union as may wish to participate. It may invite other stakeholders to attend.The committee responsible shall invite a representative group of organisers, including at least one of the contact persons referred to in the second subparagraph of Article 3(2) of Regulation (EU) No 211/2011, to present the initiative at the hearing.5. The Bureau shall, in accordance with the arrangements agreed with the Commission, adopt rules concerning the reimbursement of incurred costs.6. The President of Parliament and the Chair of the Conference of Committee Chairs may delegate their powers under this Rule to a Vice-President and another committee chair respectively.7. If the conditions laid down in Rule 50 or Rule 51 are met, those provisions shall also apply, mutatis mutandis, to other committees. Rule 188 shall also apply.Rule 23(9) shall not apply to public hearings on citizens' initiatives.
The citizens' committee presents the initiative to the European Parliament (full length, original language without translation).
Les acteurs de la campagne "l'eau, un droit humain" ont demandé à la Commission de garantir l'accès à l'eau et à l'assainissement comme un droit humain, et de s'engager contre la libéralisation des services liés à l'eau dans l'UE, lors du 1er débat organisé au Parlement dans le cadre d'une initiative citoyenne européenne. Selon les députés, l'accès à l'eau est un droit humain fondamental mais certains soulignent que l'approvisionnement en eau potable relève de la compétence des États membres.
A public hearing on the first ever European citizens' initiative will be held by the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, in association with the Committee on Petitions, the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection, and the Committee on Development.The organisers of the 'Right2Water' initiative invite the European Commission to propose legislation implementing the human right to water and sanitation as recognised by the United Nations, and promoting the provision of water and sanitation as essential public services for all. Following the reception of the initiative by the Commission on 20 December 2013, the European Parliament will hold a public hearing at which the organisers will present their 3 key goals: "guaranteed water and sanitation for all in the EU", "global access to water and sanitation for all" and "no liberalisation of water services".They will also answer questions asked by Members of the European Parliament.The public hearing aims to provide a platform for debate with Members of the European Parliament, the organisers of the 'Right2Water' initiative and representatives from the European Commission.A European citizens' initiative is an invitation to the European Commission to propose legislation on matters where the EU has competence to legislate. The Commission has three months from the initiative's official submission to inform the citizens on the steps it intends to take. 'Right2Water' is the very first successful European citizens' initiative since it was introduced in April 2012.
The European Parliament is holding a public hearing on Monday 17 February on the universal right to clean water, the first such hearing under the European Citizens' Initiative, which enables the public to ask the EU authorities to table new legislation, provided the initiative is backed by one million people across seven member states.
This month (April 2013) has seen the first birthday of the European Citizens' Initiative (ECI). The aim of the ECI was participative democracy by allowing European citizens to formally propose EU legislation if they receive 1 million signatures from at least seven member states. Right from the outset civil society groups were concerned at the prohibitive administrative and security procedures of filing a Citizens' Initiative, Greenpeace saying the rules were too restrictive, to the point of discouraging participation. Complaints about the ECI have continued, including inadequate technical solutions, unnecessary bureaucracy and lack of information and support, and in certain cases, obstructive practice in Member States.
One year of European Citizens' Initiative in practice: evaluating experience and tackling obstacles. Zita Gurmai's speech at the plenary session of the European Parliament on 18 April 2013.
Nearly one year after the launch of the European Citizens' Initiative (ECI), organisers of such initiatives are reporting numerous technical and legal problems that are preventing citizens from signing an ECI...
A EuroparlTV report explaining how European Citizens' Initiatives work.
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