Ministers' Deputies / Rapporteur Groups
Rapporteur Group on Administrative and Budgetary Questions
GR-AB(2005)23 8 July 20051
Draft annotated agenda
Meeting of 12 July 2005
1. Human Resources Policy - Reform of contractual policy and appointment procedures
(CM(2005)46 and Corrigendum, CM(2005)112 and DD(2005)469)
1.1. Following preliminary examination of the reform of contractual policy and appointment procedures in the GR-AB in the Spring of 2004 and in September 2004 (as far as the reform of appointment procedures was concerned) and further consultations with the Staff Committee, the Secretary General presented proposals in document CM(2005)46. The Secretary General outlined the main focus of the reform which aimed at increased transparency, flexibility and clarity in the management of human resources and improved social cover for staff members employed for a fixed term.
1.2. The GR-AB examined the proposals contained in document CM(2005)46 at its meeting on 31 March 2005. Summing up at that meeting, the Chair of the GR-AB noted that a vast majority of delegations which spoke:
- supported the reform of contractual policy and appointment procedures on the understanding that the measures under consideration were a part of the overall process of reform, and that other issues raised by delegations would be addressed at a later stage;
- supported the Secretary General's proposal to limit fixed term employment to five years;
- did not support the measure to provide an indemnity at the expiration of fixed term contracts.
1.3. The draft texts were then amended in the light of the Chair's conclusions at the March meeting, i.e. the measure to provide an indemnity at the expiration of fixed term contracts has been removed from the draft texts to be adopted (see the Corrigendum to CM(2005)46).
1.4. The group examined the proposals once more at its meeting of 3 June 2005. It was recalled at that meeting that the main orientations of the human resources policy reform were set out in document
GR-AB(2001)12 and amended by document GR-AB(2001)24 and on that basis, the Deputies had instructed the Secretariat to prepare the statutory and regulatory provisions required for its implementation (759th meeting (4 July 2001) item 11.3).
1.5. During the 3 June discussion, one delegation informed the group that it maintained its position expressed at the March meeting and again in writing to the Secretariat that appointments should be made after an internal competition and to bypass this mechanism would not be consistent with the Secretary General's wishes to achieve openness and transparency. In response, the Director General of Administration and Logistics suggested including the word “exceptionally” in Article 5 – Staff movements, A. Transfers, (on page 30), as follows:
“2. When vacancies occur, the Secretary General may decide exceptionally that they should be filled by transfer without an internal competition. In such cases, he or she shall approach the staff members considered for transfer and invite them to express their views.”
1.6. Summing up at that meeting, the Chair fixed a deadline for other written comments and possible proposals for amendments at 30 June 2005, i.e. two weeks after the presentation by the Secretary General of his proposals for the implementation of the Action Plan. He requested delegations to prioritise their comments and questions, and to consult with the Secretariat beforehand to clear up points of detail. He also invited the Secretariat to follow-up in an appropriate way the detailed questions and comments raised at this meeting. The Group would then come back to this item at its July meeting with a view to finalising discussions. Subsequently, the Secretariat has held bilateral discussions with the delegations of Italy the Russian Federation.
1.7. During the GR-AB meeting of 30 June 2005, the Russian delegation presented to the group its comments and proposals for amending the staff regulations on issues of contractual policy and appointment procedures which were also distributed (DD(2005)469). The Chair also informed the group that one other delegation had contacted the Secretariat with proposed amendments. There then followed a discussion on procedure for examining these, and other proposals received or to be received by the end of business that day (deadline set by Chair for submitting proposals to the reform of contractual policy and appointment procedures). Summing up, the Chair invited the Secretariat to prepare a revised document taking into account the amendments and outlining why some of them were not taken on board. This document would form the basis of the discussion on 12 July 2005, with a view to a decision. Those proposals requiring further discussions would be examined on the same occasion in the GR-AB. The Chair also informed the group that he would undertake informal consultations before 12 July to help prepare that meeting more effectively.
1.8. The Staff Committee wishes to take the floor under this item (requested by letter addressed to the Chair dated 22 June 2005).
1.9. In the light of the foregoing, the GR-AB is invited to examine this item with a view to recommending the following draft decisions to the Deputies:
1. adopted Resolution Res(2005).. on the Staff Regulations (Part I: General provisions and Part II: Appointments and assessment – termination of contract), as it appears at Appendix .. to the present volume of Decisions <Appendix A to CM(2005)46, pages 6 to 9, as amended by Part 1 of CM(2005)112>;
2. adopted Resolution Res(2005).. on Appendix II to the Staff Regulations (Regulations on Appointments), as it appears at Appendix .. to the present volume of Decisions <Appendix A to CM(2005)46, pages 10 to 20, as amended by Part 1 of CM(2005)112>;
3. adopted Resolution Res(2005).. on Appendix III to the Staff Regulations (Regulations on Table of Posts), as it appears at Appendix .. to the present volume of Decisions <Appendix A to CM(2005)46, pages 21 to 22, as amended by Part 1 of CM(2005)112>;
4. adopted Resolution Res(2005).. on Appendix VI to the Staff Regulations (Regulations on indemnity for loss of job), as it appears at Appendix .. to the present volume of Decisions <CM(2005)46 Corrigendum>;
5. decided that the above-mentioned Resolutions would enter into force on the day on which they were adopted and invited the Secretary General to inform Council of Europe staff of the relevant amendments to the Staff Regulations.
[6. possible follow-up to other proposals …]
2. Daily allowances paid to experts: information document on the current system and rates
(GR-AB(2005)22, CM/Del/Dec(2000)696/11.2 Appendix 8: current rules)
2.1. The group has been invited to examine this question during 2005 with a view to simplifying the system and reducing expenditures as necessary (909/11.3 Part 12 and 905/11.1 Part 83).
2.2. Following the request from a delegation, the Secretariat has issued an overview of the current rates, together with historical background, in document GR-AB(2005)22. It is recalled in that document that the system was last reviewed in 1999 by the Special ad hoc Working Party to look into the system of reimbursement of persons travelling at the charge of the Council of Europe budgets, and the payment of other allowances
(GT-INDEM). In the wake of the report by GT-INDEM (reproduced in document GR-AB (2005)22), the Deputies adopted revised rules at their 696th meeting. The current rules can be found in Appendix 8 to the volume of decisions of the 696th meeting (3 February 2000).
2.2. The Chair invites delegations to use this opportunity to ask for further clarifications if necessary. He also intends to fix a deadline for submitting proposals.
3. Any other business
4. Date of the next meeting
Tuesday, 20 September 2005 at 10 a.m.
Note 1 This document has been classified restricted at the date of issue. Unless the Committee of Ministers decides otherwise, it will be declassified according to the rules set up in Resolution Res(2001)6 on access to Council of Europe documents.
Note 2 The Deputies “approved the amounts for the rates of the various retainers, honoraria and daily allowances with effect from 1 January 2005, […] with the understanding that the issue will be additionally examined during 2005 with a view to simplifying the system and reducing expenditures as necessary.”
Note 3 The Deputies (restricted to the members states of the Pompidou Group) “noted that the GR-AB would examine the general question of reimbursement of subsistence and travelling costs of Experts and report back to the Committee of Ministers, and noted that, in this context, the Pompidou Group might make ad hoc arrangements during the course of 2005, subject to the agreement of the States members of the Partial Agreement.”