After 4 months of work the Georgian Parliament’s Permanent Council on Open and Transparent Governance and its Consultative Group finished developing draft amendments to the Parliamentary Rules of Procedure. The draft law was developed based on the Open Parliament Georgia Action Plan for 2015-2016 and aims to promote citizen participation in parliamentary activities and enhance the Parliament’s transparency and accountability.
Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI), as chairman of the Consultative Group, was actively involved in the process. The amendments developed by IDFI were based on three commitments of the Open Parliament Action Plan:
1. Ability to comment on draft laws electronically and / or in writing (commitment 1.1.)
2. Creating a mechanism for electronically submitting and voting on legislative proposals and initiatives on the Parliament website (commitment 1.2.)
3. Uploading documents in easy to use formats to the Parliament website (for commitment 3.1.)
These commitments, as well as the idea to set up the Permanent Parliamentary Council on Open and Transparent Governance, were initiated by IDFI.
The amendments proposed by IDFI aim to promote citizen participation in the parliamentary activities and the legislative process by allowing them to electronically submit and sign legislative initiatives and proposals.
The amendments also involve improving the formats of documents uploaded to the Parliament website and creating an option for registered users of the website to leave comments on the electronically submitted legislative initiatives and proposals.
The draft law is aimed at introducing e-governance and e-participation standards in the Georgian Parliament, increasing the popularity of its website, introducing electronic resources as an alternative in the legislative process and providing more information about parliamentary activities to interested persons.
The draft amendments to the Parliamentary Rules of Procedure were developed as part of the Supporting the Parliament of Georgia in Implementation of the Open Parliament Georgia Action Plan project, implemented by the Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI) and funded by the UNDP and the EU.