Russia Postpones Budget Vote
Oct. 20, 1999
MOSCOW (AP) _ Russia's lower house of parliament on Wednesday put off a vote on the draft 2000 budget after it became clear that the document wouldn't get enough support to pass.
The Communist Party, which dominates the State Duma together with its allies, said it would vote against the draft budget. Hard-liners said the budget wouldn't boost industry or agriculture and left little money for social programs.
The document needs a majority of 226 votes to be approved, and it appeared unlikely that the Duma would muster the necessary votes without support from the Communists.
The Duma decided to put off the vote until Friday, after some lawmakers suggested revising the document so it isn't rejected.
The Duma turned down the draft budget when it was first submitted by the government last month, with lawmakers complaining that it gave too much money to the federal government and not enough to the regions and the military.
Officials said that if the Duma doesn't pass the budget draft soon, the document is unlikely to be approved before the new year.
The revised draft budget envisaged revenues of $25 billion, an increase of about 6 percent in comparison with the initial draft. Planned expenditures have been increased to $27 billion.
By comparison, the U.S. government takes in and spends more in an average week.