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Finland - Parliament Act 1928 Index Page Document Table of Contents

    { Adopted on: 13 Jan 1928 }
    { ICL Document Status: 22 Dec 1995 - repealed! }

    { Editor's Note
    This version of the document is no longer in force!  It has been repealed by Section 131 of the 1999 Constitution.  We only keep the old document for comparison with the new old.  The raw text is a translation by Martin Scheinin provided to ICL in 1996.  The ICL edition features additional article titles for better overview in the table of contents. }

 

Chapter 1  General Provisions

 

Section 1  [Representation]

The people of Finland are represented by Parliament, convened in session.
 

Section 2  [Unicameral Parliament]

Parliament shall be unicameral and shall comprise two hundred representatives.
 

Section 3  [Term, Elections]

(1) Parliamentary elections shall be held every fourth year at the same time throughout the country. Provisions on the participation of Finnish citizens abroad in parliamentary elections shall be prescribed by Act of Parliament.
(2) If the President of the Republic has ordered new elections pursuant to the Constitution Act, the next election shall be held when the regular electoral period ends four years thereafter, unless Parliament is dissolved again before that time.
(3) The authority of a representative shall begin when he is declared elected and shall continue until the next election has been held.
 

Section 4  [Direct and Proportional Ballot]

(1) The representatives shall be elected by a direct and proportional ballot, for which purpose the country shall be divided into no fewer than twelve and no more than eighteen electoral districts.
(2) However, if local conditions require an exception from electoral proportionality, one electoral district or several electoral districts may be formed, in addition to those referred to in Paragraph (1), for the election of one representative only.
(3) The suffrage of those enfranchised shall be equal in the elections.
(4) The right to vote may not be exercised by proxy.
(5) More detailed provisions on electoral districts and on the timing and manner of the elections shall be enacted in a special Act of Parliament.
 

Section 5  [Electoral Crimes]

The penalties for electoral crime, electoral bribery, fraudulent voting and falsification of electoral results are prescribed in Sections 1 to 4 of Chapter 14 of the Penal Code.
 

Section 6  [Right to Vote]

(1) Regardless of domicile, every citizen of Finland who has reached the age of eighteen years no later than on the day of the election shall be entitled to vote.
(2) Provisions on registers of those entitled to vote shall be prescribed by Act of Parliament.
 

Section 7  [Right to be Elected]

(1) Regardless of domicile, every person entitled to vote and not under guardianship shall be eligible for Parliament.
(2) However, a soldier may not be elected a representative, with the exception of a person serving his term of military conscription.
 

Section 8  [Loss of Eligibility]

(1) If an elected representative loses his eligibility for office, his parliamentary mandate shall expire.
(2) If an elected representative is elected President of the Republic, his parliamentary mandate shall expire on the date when he takes office as President. However, after having been elected he may not participate in parliamentary business.
(3) A parliamentary mandate shall not expire due to the conscription of the elected representative for service in the armed forces or for non-military service after the election.
(4) If, after the election, an elected representative has been sentenced to a term of imprisonment for an intentional offence or for an electoral crime, electoral bribery, fraudulent voting or falsification of electoral results in a parliamentary election, then Parliament shall have the authority to determine whether he may still be permitted to serve as a representative. When the nature of the offence or the manner of its commission indicates that the offender is not worthy of the trust and respect required by his parliamentary mandate, Parliament may, after having obtained a statement on the matter from the Committee for Constitutional Law, revoke his parliamentary mandate by a decision supported by not less than two thirds of the votes cast, unless the offender himself has petitioned Parliament for such a discharge. This provision shall be complied with after the Court of Appeal has issued its decision, though it be not yet final. However and notwithstanding the right of appeal, Parliament shall take up the matter for consideration following, and on the basis of the decision of the lower court, if the decision of Parliament to this effect is supported by not less than five sixths of the votes cast.
 

Section 8a  [Compatibility of European Parliament Membership]

The parliamentary mandate of a representative shall not expire on account of his election to the European Parliament. The exercise of the parliamentary mandate shall, however, be suspended for the period of attendance to the duties of the said office.  During this period the representative may not participate in parliamentary business but his personal deputy shall attend to the duties of his parliamentary mandate in his stead.
 

Section 9  [Incompatibilities]

The Chancellor of Justice, the Assistant Chancellor of Justice, a Justice of the Supreme Court or of the Supreme Administrative Court, the Parliamentary Ombudsman and the Assistant Parliamentary Ombudsman may not hold the office of representative. If a representative is appointed to one of the aforesaid offices or elected Parliamentary Ombudsman or As-
sistant Parliamentary Ombudsman, his parliamentary mandate shall expire.

Section 10  [Duty to Serve in Parliament]
(1) A person who has been declared an elected representative pursuant to the Elections Act shall not be discharged from his duties, unless he can show some lawful impediment or other reason approved by Parliament.
(2) The duties of a representative shall be suspended for the period he is in the service referred to in Section 8 (3). During this period he may not participate in parliamentary business.
 

Section 11  [Bound by Constitution]

In performing his duties a representative shall be bound to serve the interests of justice and truth. He shall be bound therein to comply with the Constitution, and shall not be bound by any other regulations.
 

Section 12  [Right to Enter Parliament]

A representative shall not be prevented from entering Parliament and attending to his duties there.
 

Section 13

No representative shall be indicted or deprived of his liberty on the grounds of the opinions which he has expressed in Parliament or of his conduct otherwise in the consideration of any business, unless Parliament has consented to this by a de-
cision supported by no fewer than five sixths of the votes cast.
 

Section 14  [Immunity]

(1) A representative may not be apprehended, detained or subjected to a travel ban without the consent of Parliament before the charges against him have been taken up for consideration, unless he has been caught in the act of committing an offence for which the minimum penalty is a period of imprisonment no shorter than six months.
(2) The Speaker shall be immediately informed of the apprehension and detention of a representative.
 

Section 15  [Abuse]

(1) If a person, either in the course of a parliamentary session or while a representative is travelling to or from Parliament, abuses the representative by word or by deed, in the knowledge that the person so abused is a representative, or if a person assaults a representative after a parliamentary session because of the manner in which he has carried out his duties, the fact that the victim of the offence was a representative shall be deemed to be a seriously aggravating  circumstance.
(2) The provisions of this section regarding representatives shall also apply to parliamentary secretaries and to other parliamentary officials and ancillary staff.
 

Section 16  [Salary]

(1) A representative shall receive a salary from State funds. In addition, he shall be reimbursed for the costs of his travel to and from Parliament.
(2) The bases for the salary and the reimbursement of travel costs shall be determined by law, the proposal for which shall be considered following the procedure prescribed in Section 70.
(3) {repealed on 18 June 1993}
(4) The right of a representative to a pension shall be prescribed by law.
 

Section 17  [Sanctions for Nonattendance]

(1) If a representative does not arrive in time for a parliamentary session or if, without the permission of Parliament, he fails to appear and has no acceptable excuse, Parliament may impose as a sanction the forfeiture of the whole or a part of his salary. If the representative does not thereafter amend his conduct, Parliament may revoke his mandate.
(2) If a representative is serving a sentence of imprisonment, he shall forfeit his salary for the same period.
 

Chapter 2  Opening and Closure of Parliamentary Sessions and the Dissolution of Parliament

 

Section 18  [Place of Convention]

Parliament shall convene in the capital city of the State, except where this is impossible or jeopardises the safety of Parliamentdue to enemy incursion or other special cause. In these cases the President of the Republic shall determine the place where Parliament shall convene.
 

Section 19  [Regular Sessions]

(1) Regular parliamentary sessions shall convene annually on the first day of February, unless Parliament has, during the preceding regular session, specified another date on which to convene.
(2) A regular parliamentary session shall continue with or without interruptions until the following regular session is convened. However, the final session of a regular electoral period shall continue until the President of the Republic, after Parliament has decided to close its session, declares the business of Parliament concluded for the electoral period in question.
(3) The Speaker of Parliament shall have the right to convene Parliament for the continuation of an interrupted session.

Section 20  [Closing Regular Session]
If the President of the Republic orders a new election during a regular session, Parliament shall decide the date when it closes the session. After the election Parliament shall meet in a regular session on the first day of the next calendar month which follows a period of ninety days counted from the date of the election order, or on an earlier date as determined by the President.
 

Section 21  [Extraordinary Session]

(1) The President of the Republic shall have the right to convene an extraordinary parliamentary session, and to determine when such a session shall be closed.
(2) An extraordinary session may be ordered to convene at the earliest on the third day after the summons was issued. It may not continue beyond the last weekday before the beginning of a regular session.
(3) During an extraordinary session Parliament may consider only those matters for which it has been convened or which otherwise have been presented to Parliament by the government, as well as matters that are inseparably connected thereto.
 

Section 22  [Publication]

The orders of the President of the Republic referred to in Sections 20 and 21 shall be published in "The Statutes of Finland," following the procedure prescribed for the pub-
lication of Acts of Parliament and Decrees. An order referred to in Section 18 shall be published in "The Statutes of Finland," if the President so decides.
 

Section 23  [First Convention]

(1) On the day before the day when Parliament shall convene for the first time following an election, at noon, all of the representatives, in the order specified in an announcement, shall present their credentials to the person or persons whom the President of the Republic has appointed to inspect the credentials. In the inspection it shall be determined whether the credentials have been issued by the competent official and whether they are in the prescribed form.
(2) An alphabetical list of representatives who have shown themselves to be duly authorised shall be presented to Parliament before noon on the following day.
(3) Credentials presented later shall be inspected immediately, as provided in Paragraph (1), and following approval, shall be shown to the Speaker. This and the other changes in the composition of Parliament shall be entered in the list referred toin Paragraph (2).
 

Section 24  [Credential of a Representative]

(1) If the credentials of a representative have not been approved, Parliament shall have the right to determine whether he shall in any case serve as a representative by virtue of the credentials.
(2) If, during a parliamentary session, an objection concerning the eligibility of a representative is filed  pursuant to this Act, it shall also be investigated by Parliament, unless the same objection has been filed or may still be filed with the competent official as an electoral appeal.
(3) In no other case shall any question of the validity of a parliamentary election be considered by Parliament, unless the objection has been filed on the grounds that either in the election or in the election procedures there has been obvious criminal misconduct or a clear error in the determination of the election result. In such cases, if it is clear that the offence or the error may have affected the election result and rectification may no longer be obtained by any appeal route, Parliament shall have the right to rectify the election result so that it is consistent with the provisions of the Elections Act.
(4) A representative whose right to hold office has been questioned shall, however, remain in office until declared ineligible for office.
 

Section 25  [Roll Call]

(1) At noon on the first day of a session, Parliament shall assemble in a plenary sitting beginning with a roll call of the list referred to in Section 23. In this plenary sitting Parliament shall elect a Speaker and two Deputy Speakers from among its members. However, during an extraordinary session the Speaker and Deputy Speakers of the immediately preceding regular session shall serve as Speakers.
(2) The Speaker and Deputy Speakers shall be elected by secret ballot. In each election a representative who receives more than half of the votes cast shall be elected. Otherwise a new election shall be held immediately and if, nevertheless, no candidate receives an absolute majority, a further election shall be held in which the representative who receives the most votes shall be elected. Should the votes be divided equally, the election shall be decided by the drawing of lots.
(3) After the election the Speaker and Deputy Speakers shall, each in turn, make the following solemn affirmation before Parliament:
"I, ..., affirm that in my office as Speaker I will to the best of my ability defend the rights of the people, Parliament and the government of Finland according to the Constitution."
(4) Until these affirmations have been made the representative most senior in years shall serve as Speaker.
(5) The terms of the Speaker and Deputy Speakers shall last until the end of the parliamentary session. However, the terms of the Speaker and Deputy Speakers elected for the final session of an electoral period shall last until new elections have been held.
(6) If the Speaker or a Deputy Speaker dies or resigns from office during a parliamentary session, a new Speaker or Deputy Speaker shall be elected without delay.
 

Section 26  [Opening Time]

The President of the Republic shall cause the time of the opening of a parliamentary session to be announced. The opening shall be ordered no later than on the third weekday after Parliament has convened. At the said time, following a holy  service, the representatives shall assemble in the Par-
liament Building, where the President shall deliver a welcomingaddress to Parliament and declare the session open. The Speaker shall reply to the opening address on behalf of Parliament.
 

Section 27  [Conclusion of Electoral Period]

For the conclusion of parliamentary business, in the last session of a regular electoral period at a time determined by the President, following a holy service, the representatives shall assemble in the Parliament Building, where the Speaker shall bid the President welcome on behalf of Parliament. Thereafter the President shall declare the parliamentary business concluded for that electoral period.
 

Chapter 3  Initiation of Matters in Parliament

 

Section 28  [Initiative]

(1) Government proposals shall be submitted to Parliament by the President of the Republic.
(2) The President of the Republic may withdraw a government proposal when there are grounds for so doing.
(3) The Speaker shall notify Parliament of the receipt of government proposals, as well as of Decrees and of government resolutions or ministerial decisions presented for parliamentary inspection. He shall also notify Parliament of the withdrawal of a government proposal.
 

Section 29  [Report]

In all regular parliamentary sessions, within three months of the opening of the session, a report shall be presented to Parliament on the measures the government has undertaken on the basis of the decisions of Parliament, as well as on other matters of significance in State administration and relations with foreign powers.
 

Section 30  [State Budget]

(1) A proposal for the State budget for the following financial year shall be submitted to Parliament in all regular parliamentary sessions.
(2) A report on the management and condition of State finances shall also be presented to Parliament in all regular parliamentary sessions.
(3) The State auditors elected by Parliament shall submit a report to Parliament pursuant to the provisions governing such reports.
 

Section 31  [Consideration of Initiative]

(1) Parliament shall have the right to consider an initiative that has been duly submitted by a representative. Such an initiative may be:
1) A bill, containing a proposal in legislative form for the enactment of a new Act of Parliament or for the amendment, expounding or repeal of an existing Act of Parliament, or a proposal for an Act of Parliament regarding a matter that had previously been governed by administrative provisions;
2) A budget motion, containing a proposal for an  appropriation or other decision to be included in the budget or for a budget amendment immediately connected with a supplementary budget proposal by the government;
3) A petitionary motion, containing a proposal for Parliament to petition the government to undertake measures on a matter within its competence.
(2) Separate provisions shall apply to the enactment of the Church Code.
 

Section 32  [Form of Initiative]

(1) An initiative shall be submitted in writing. It shall includethe grounds on which the proposal is based. Disparate matters shall not be incorporated in the same initiative.
(2) A bill may be submitted when Parliament is in session.
(3) A budget motion may be submitted during the period beginning when Parliament has been notified of the arrival of the State budget proposal and ending at noon on the fourteenth day thereafter. A budget motion relating to a supplementary budget proposal may be submitted during the period beginning when Parliament has been notified of the arrival of the supplementary budget proposal and ending at noon on the third day thereafter.
(4) A petitionary motion may be submitted in regular parliamentary sessions during the period beginning at the opening of the session and ending at noon on the fourteenth day thereafter in the first regular session of an electoral period, or at noon on the seventh day thereafter in other regular sessions.
(5) An initiative may be withdrawn when there are grounds for so doing. All of those who signed the initiative must sign the letter of withdrawal.

Section 33  [Aaaland]
(1) The separate provisions of the Aaland Autonomy Act and of the Aaland Land Acquisition Act shall govern the order of enactment of the provisions of these Acts.
(2) Separate provisions shall govern the right of the Aaland Legislative Assembly to submit initiatives.
 

Section 34  [Statement From Parliament]

A statement from Parliament on a matter which the government may determine without the participation of Parliament may be requested in a government proposal.
 

Section 35  [Continuations of Matters]

If the consideration of a matter has not been concluded by the end of a regular parliamentary session, it shall be continued, with the exceptions referred to in Sections 36 and 37, in the following regular session, unless parliamentary elections have been held in the interim.
 

Section 36  [Unscheduled Statement]

(1) If the Council of State wishes to submit to Parliament an unscheduled statement on a matter of State administration or of relations with foreign powers, it shall be presented to Parliament and deferred to a later sitting. When debate on the matter has been formally concluded, the Speaker shall submit to Parliament a motion to proceed with the agenda, with the following wording:
"Having been informed, Parliament shall proceed with the agenda."
(2) Parliament may approve of proceeding with the agenda either in this ordinary manner, or with a statement of the reasons presented during the debate. It may also decide to send the matter to the competent committee. If the matter is sent to a committee, the committee shall propose that Parliament proceed with the agenda, giving a statement of reasons for this, the final content of which shall be decided by Parliament.
(3) The Council of State may submit an unscheduled report to Parliament on a matter referred to in Paragraph (1) above. The report shall be presented to Parliament and deferred to a later sitting. When the debate has ended, the report shall be sent to a committee for preparation, unless Parliament decides to proceed with the agenda without sending the report to a committee. Having considered the report the committee, in its report, shall propose the wording of the statement to be issued on the report of the Council of State. Parliament shall decide on the final content of the statement and shall proceed with the agenda.While a report is under consideration, no motion may be submitted nor decision made concerning the confidence that the Council of State or a member thereof enjoys.
(4) The consideration of a statement from the Council of State shall not be continued into the following parliamentary session. Neither shall the consideration of a report of the Council of State be continued into the following parliamentary session, unless otherwise decided by Parliament.
 

Section 36a  [Unscheduled Notification]

(1) At a time agreed with the Speaker, the Prime Minister may submit to Parliament an unscheduled notification concerning a matter falling within the competence of the Council of State. The notification may also be submitted by another member of the Council of State at the behest of  the Prime Minister.
(2) The Speaker shall decide whether a debate is to be permitted as a result of the notification. Notwithstanding the provisions of Sections 57 and 58, the speaker shall, at his discretion, give the floor to representatives. When the Speaker considers that sufficient debate has taken place, he shall formally conclude the debate.
(3) No decision of Parliament shall arise from a notification by the Prime Minister.
 

Section 36b  [Written Proposal of Debate]

(1) A representative shall have the right to submit a written proposal to the Speaker's Council that a debate be held in a plenary sitting on a topical matter of his choosing.
(2) The Speaker's Council shall decide on the arranging of the debate. The giving and taking of the floor may be governed by principles which are at variance with the provisions of Sections 57 and 59.
(3) No decision of Parliament shall arise from the debate on the matter.
 

Section 37  [Questioning Government]

(1) If a representative wishes to put a question to a member of the Council of State on a matter within the competence of the member, he shall submit the question in writing and worded in precise terms to the Speaker, who shall forward it to the member of the Council of State. A question may also be asked when the parliamentary session has been interrupted. The member of the Council of State shall respond to the question either orally or in writing at a time agreed upon with the Speaker. Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 93 (2), a response shall be given within twenty-one days of receipt of the question. If the parliamentary session has been interrupted, the response shall be issued in writing. No debate shall be permitted on such a matter.
(2) If a representative wishes to address an interpellation to a member of the Council of State on a matter within the competence of the member, for consideration in Parliament, the representative shall submit the interpellation to the Speaker observing the provisions of Paragraph (1) in respect of form and content. After the interpellation has been presented in Parliament and deferred to a later sitting, and if no fewer than twenty representatives, including the interpellators, have joined the interpellation in writing, the Speaker shall forward the interpellation to the competent member of the Council of  State without a debate in Parliament. The member of the Council of State shall respond to the interpellation within fifteen days of receipt thereof, at a time agreed upon with the Speaker, unless the Council of State within the same period notifies Parliament that due to the nature of the matter no response shall be given. In this case Parliament shall be notified of the reasons for the refusal. When a response has been given or Parliament hasbeen notified that none shall be given, and debate on the matter has been formally concluded, the Speaker shall submit to Parliament a motion to proceed with the agenda, with the following wording:
"Having heard the explanation that has been given, Parliament shall proceed with the agenda."
(3) Parliament may approve of proceeding with the agenda either in this ordinary manner, or with a statement of the reasons, presented during the debate. It may also decide to send the matter to the Committee for Constitutional Law or, if the nature of the matter so requires, to another committee. If the matter is sent to a committee, the committee shall propose that Parliament proceed with the agenda, giving a statement of reasons for this, the final content of which shall be decided by Parliament.
(4) The consideration of an interpellation may not be continued into the following parliamentary session.
 

Section 37a  [Oral Questions to Government]

The Speaker's Council may decide that a debate will be held in a plenary sitting in which the representatives will have the right to put short oral questions to the members of the Council of State. The giving and taking of the floor in the debate may be governed by principles which are at variance with the provisions of Sections 57 and 59. No decision of Parliament shall arise from the debate on the matter.
 

Section 37b  [Questioning Government on Foreign Relations]

(1) A question may be put in Parliament to the Council of State on a current issue in State administration or relations with foreign powers, provided that the matter is one of consequence and within the competence of the Council of State. The question shall be submitted to the Speaker in writing and signed by no fewer than four representatives.
(2) The Speakers' Council shall decide on the questions to be forwarded to the Council of State. All other questions shall lapse.
(3) At the next sitting at which time has been reserved for questions to the Council of State a response to the question shall be given on behalf of the Council of State by the Prime Minister, or at his behest, by the member of the Council of State within whose competence the matter lies, or by another member of the Council of State. The first signatory of the question shall have the first right to take the floor on the basis of the reply. At his own discretion the Speaker shall allow other representatives and the members of the Council of State to speak on the matter. No further debate on the matter shall be permitted. When all the requests for the floor have been granted or when the Speaker considers there has been sufficient debate, he shall formally conclude the debate. A response to a question to which no response has been given when the Speaker con-
cludes the sitting shall be given in a later sitting at which time has been reserved for questions.
(4) Parliament shall make no decision on matters provided for in this section.
(5) More detailed provisions on the asking of questions and on responses and other comments shall be enacted in the Procedure of Parliament.
 

Section 38  [Inspection of Legality of Official Acts]

Provisions on the right of Parliament to inspect the legality of the official acts of the members of the Council of State and of the Chancellor of Justice and on the consideration of such matters shall be prescribed in a special Act of Parliament.
 

Section 38a  [Supplementary Budget]

The provisions on the consideration of the State budget shall apply to a supplementary budget, unless specifically otherwise prescribed.
 

Section 38b  [Statement Regarding Incompatibilities]

The Council of State shall without delay submit to Parliament a communication containing the details of the commitments of its members referred to in Section 36c of the Constitution Act. A debate shall be held on the matter in a plenary sitting. No decision of Parliament shall arise from the communication.
 

Chapter 4  Preparation of Matters

 

Section 39  [Electors]

(1) Within five days of the opening of the first session of an electoral period Parliament shall appoint no fewer than forty-
five electors, and deputies for them numbering no fewer than one third of the number of electors, for the election of the committees and the other organs of Parliament.
(2) Parliament shall elect the electors by proportional ballot, unless the appointments can be determined by agreement. The term of the electors shall last for the electoral period, unless on the proposal of the Speakers' Council Parliament decides that the electors shall be re-appointed.
 

Section 40  [Committees]

(1) In the first session of an electoral period, within seven days of the opening of Parliament, the Committee for Constitutional Law, the Committee for Ordinary Law, the Foreign Affairs Committee, the Finance Committee and the other standing committees provided for in the Procedure of Parliament shall be appointed.
(2) The Committee for Constitutional Law, the Committee for Ordinary Law and the Foreign Affairs Committee shall have no fewer than seventeen members, the Finance Committee shall have no fewer than twenty-one members and other standing committees shall have no fewer than eleven members. A standing committee shall also have deputy members, who shall number no fewer than one fourth of the number of members.
(3) Parliament may appoint a temporary committee for the preparation of a specific matter. A temporary committee shall have no fewer than eleven members. It shall also have deputy members, who shall number no fewer than one fourth of the number of members.
(4) If a committee perceives a need to increase the number of its members or deputy members, it shall submit to Parliament a motion to this effect.
 

Section 41  [Committee Elections]

(1) If Parliament is unanimous on the election, it shall elect the members and deputy members of the standing and temporary committees. If no consensus can be reached, the election shall be performed by the electors.
(2) If the electors do not reach a consensus on the election of the members and deputy members of a committee, it shall be conducted by proportional ballot.
(3) The term of the members of a standing committee shall last for the electoral period, unless Parliament, on the proposal of the Speakers' Council, decides that the committee shall be re-
appointed.
(4) The term of the members of a temporary committee shall last until the committee has fulfilled its task. Such a committee may also be re-appointed during an electoral period.
 

Section 42  [Grand Committee]

In the first session of an electoral period, within seven days ofthe opening of Parliament, it shall appoint a Grand Committee. The Committee shall have no fewer than twenty-five members. It shall also have deputy members, who shall number no fewer than one third of the number of members. The provisions on the election and term of the members of a standing committee shall apply to the election and term of the members of the Grand Committee.

Section 42a  [Revisors]
In the first regular session of an electoral period, within seven days of the opening of Parliament, it shall elect from among its members five revisors and a deputy revisor for each revisor. If Parliament is unable to agree on those elected, then the election shall be conducted by proportional ballot. The term of office of the revisors shall begin immediately following the election and shall continue until new revisors have been elected unless, on the proposal of the Speaker's Council, Parliament decides that the revisors must be renominated.
 

Section 43

(1) Regardless of any interruption in, or of the closure of the parliamentary session, the Foreign Affairs Committee shall convene at the request of the government and the Grand Committee at the request of the Council of State, or on the initiative of the chairman of the committee, or if no fewer than one third of the members of the committee so request of the chairman in writing.
(2) Other committees shall meet during an interruption of the parliamentary session on the initiative of the chairman of the committee, or if no fewer than one third of the members of the committee so request of the chairman in writing.
 

Section 44  [Incompatibilities]

(1) A member of the Council of State may not serve as a member of a Committee.
(2) A person, whose official acts are being inspected in a committee or who has a personal interest in the matter, may not participate in the consideration of the matter in the committee.
 

Section 45  [Chairmen]

(1) The electors, the committees and the revisors shall each elect from among themselves a chairman and a deputy chairman for the duration of their terms.
(2) The first meeting shall be convened by that member of the electors, of each committee, and of the revisors who is most senior in years. He shall serve as chairman of the meeting until a chairman has been elected.
(3) For the purpose of a specific matter a committee may elect one or more presenting members from among its members to present the necessary information when the matter is under consideration in a plenary sitting of Parliament or in the Grand Committee.
 

Section 46  [Committee for Constitutional Law]

(1) The Committee for Constitutional Law shall prepare the matters sent to it relating to the enactment, amendment, expounding or repeal of a Constitutional Act or to legislation that is in close substantive connection with a Constitutional Act. It shall be the task of the Committee to deliver an opinion on the conformity with Constitutional Acts and the relation to international human rights agreements of the legislative proposals and other matters under its consideration.
(2) The Committee shall also examine the proposals sent to it relating to the enactment of the Procedure of Parliament, the Election Rules of Parliament and the regulations for the Parliamentary Ombudsman.
(3) The Committee shall likewise examine the government report referred to in Section 29, and submit the motions warranted thereby.
(4) The matters arising from the fact that Parliament has the right to inspect the legality of the official acts of the members of the Council of State and of the Chancellor of Justice shall also be prepared by the Committee for Constitutional Law.
(5) The Committee for Constitutional Law shall settle differences between Parliament and the Speaker, when the Speaker has refused to take up a proposed matter for consideration or to present a matter for voting.
 

Section 47  [Committee for Ordinary Law]

The Committee for Ordinary Law shall prepare the proposals sent to it relating to the enactment, amendment, expounding or repeal of a general Act of Parliament.
 

Section 48  [Foreign Affairs Committee]

(1) The Foreign Affairs Committee shall prepare matters relating to the approval or entry into force of treaties which are significant from the point of view of Finland's international relations, as well as the matters sent to it otherwise relating to the conduct of foreign affairs.
(2) The Committee shall, on request and otherwise when circumstances warrant, receive a report from the government on relations with foreign powers and information on matters concerning the common foreign and security policy of the European Union. When necessary, the  Committee may issue a statement to the government on the basis of the report and of the information which it has received.
(3) The Committee shall also examine the report referred to in Section 29 if it pertains to relations with foreign powers, and submit the motions warranted thereby.
(4) The members of the Committee shall observe whatever secrecy the government deems necessary in view of the nature of each matter.
 

Section 49  [Finance Committee]

(1) The Finance Committee shall have access to all the accounts and documents relating to State finances. In its report on the condition of State finances and on the report of the State auditors the Committee shall express its opinion as to how the State budget has been complied with and the State finances managed, and submit the motions warranted thereby.
(2) The government proposal on the State budget, the other Government proposals relating to State finances and the budget motions shall also be sent to the Finance Committee. In its report on the budget proposal the Committee shall consider all of the issues to be decided in the budget. In the same report the Committee shall propose the means to collect the funds needed to defray the expenses.
(3) The Finance Committee shall serve as the committee referred to in Section 65 (3) of the Constitution Act, and may submit its decision for confirmation by Parliament. After debating the matter Parliament shall either accept or reject the decision.
(4) The Finance Committee shall, through the competent member of the Council of State, monitor negotiations on the conditions of service referred to in Section 65 (3) of the Constitution Act, and the preparation of decisions relating to  these conditions. The Council of State shall submit for the approval of the Finance Committee collective bargaining agreements on official salaries, as well as decisions of the Council of State or of the Commission for Local Authority Employers concerning conditions of public service.
(5) The Committee shall also examine the proposals sent to itrelating to the issuing, amendment or repeal of the regulations for the State auditors.
 

Section 50  [Bank of Finland Inspection by Standing Committee]

(1) The management and condition of the Bank of Finland, the actions of the Governors and the Board of the Bank of Finland and the condition and management of the funds under the supervision of Parliament shall be inspected by the standing committee to which these duties are assigned by the Procedure of Parliament. The committee shall submit a report on these matters to Parliament.
(2) The committee shall submit the necessary motions on the enactment, amendment or repeal of the Act on the Bank of Finland and the regulations for the Governors, as well as on the issuing of other regulations and orders relating to the Bank of Finland. It shall prepare all the government proposals and other motions relating to these matters. A decision on the use of the profits of the Bank of Finland may not be made before the committee has issued a statement on the matter.
(3) The committee shall likewise prepare the matters sent to it relating to the banking and monetary system of Finland.
 

Section 51  [First Committee Meeting]

(1) Each committee shall meet within two days of its appointment. As soon as a matter is prepared a report warranted by the nature of the matter shall be submitted to a plenary sitting of Parliament.
(2) If a member of a committee is prevented from attending the consideration of a matter, a deputy member shall be summoned to take his place. A committee shall not constitute a quorum unless no fewer than two thirds of the members are present.
(3) If a member of a committee, with neither valid excuse nor special permission, fails to attend a meeting of the Committee, Parliament may impose as a sanction the forfeiture of his salary, either in whole or in part, as provided in Section 17, and, if the failure occurs more frequently, may declare him to have forfeited his position as a member of the committee.
(4) A member who disagrees with the decision of a committee shall have the right to append a written protest to the report provided that he does not thereby delay the report.
 

Section 52  [Government in Committees]

(1) The members of the Council of State shall have the right to participate in the meetings and discussions of the committees, unless a committee otherwise decides in a specific instance.
(2) The Speaker and the Deputy Speakers shall have the right to attend the meetings of the committees.
(3) Except when a matter referred to in Chapter 4a is being considered, all of the members of Parliament, the secretary-
general of Parliament and other parliamentary officials appointed by the Speaker shall have the right to attend the meetings of the Grand Committee. The representative elected from the electoral district of Aaland shall, however, always have the right to attend meetings of the Committee.
(4) A committee may declare its proceedings open to the public to the extent that is necessary for collecting information for the preparation of a matter.
 

Section 52a  [Sámi Rights]

The Sámi shall be heard in a matter of special consequence to them, as further provided in the Procedure of Parliament.
 

Section 53  [Grand Committee Information]

(1) If, for the preparation of a matter, a committee, or for the consideration of a matter referred to in Sections 54b to54d the Grand Committee requires access to documents gathered by an official or a public service not subject to par-
liamentary control, or needs to receive oral or written information from them, then the Prime Minister or the competent Minister shall, at the request of the committee, take steps to have the required documents or information presented to the committee without delay.
(2) The competent Ministry shall present a committee with an account of any matter within the competence of the committee requested thereby. If necessary, the committee may provide the Ministry with a statement arising from the account received.
(3) {repealed on 31 Dec 1994}
(4) {repealed on 31 Dec 1994}
 

Section 54  [Speaker's Council]

(1) The Speaker of Parliament, the Deputy Speakers and the Chairmen of the committees shall form the Speakers' Council.
(2) The Speakers' Council shall submit proposals on the organisation of parliamentary business. If necessary, the Speakers' Council shall also submit motions to Parliament relating to the enactment of legislation on parliamentary officials, the Procedure of Parliament, the Election Rules of Parliament and the regulations for parliamentary officials.
 

Chapter 4a  Consideration of the Affairs of the European Union

 

Section 54a  [Prime Minister Information]

(1) The Prime Minister shall inform the Grand Committee, and in respect of the common foreign and security policy of the European Union, the Foreign Affairs Committee with information in advance on matters that will be considered in a meeting of the European Council.
(2) The Prime Minister shall without delay inform Parliament or the competent committee with information on matters that have been discussed at meetings of the European Council.
(3) When necessary, the competent committee deliver an opinion to the Council of State on tha basis of the information received.
 

Section 54b  [Council of State Information]

(1) The Council of State shall without delay send to the Speaker  a communication on any proposal which has come to its notice for an act, agreement or other measure to be decided by the Council of the European Union and which otherwise pursuant to the constitution would fall within the competence of Parliament. Unless special constitutional provisions  provide otherwise, such matter shall be considered in Parliament as hereinafter prescribed in this chapter and in the Procedure of Parliament.
(2) Paragraph (1) shall also apply to any matter referred to in Paragraph (1) upon which the  Commission or another organ decides in the European Union pursuant to powers delegated to it by the Council, or on the basis of an agreement with a third state or with an international organisation.
 

Section 54c  [Debate]

The Speaker's Council may decide on the taking up of a matter referred to in Section 54b for debate in a plenary sitting at which, however, Parliament shall make no decision on the matter.
 

Section 54d  [Submission of Communication]

(1) The Speaker shall submit a communication received from the Council of State and the proposal referred therein for consideration by the Grand Committee and generally by one ormore specialized committees which shall deliver an opinion to it. If the matter concerns the Common Foreign and Security Policy of the European Union, then the communication with the proposal shall be submitted for consideration by the Foreign Affairs Committee instead of the Grand Committee. The consideration may also be continued, regardless of parliamentary elections held meanwhile, until the matter has been decided in the European Union.
(2) The Council of State shall inform  the committees participating in the consideration with information on the stage of consideration of the matter in the European Union. The Grand Committee or the Foreign Affairs Committee shall also be notified of the position of the Council of State on the matter. When necessary the Grand Committee or the Foreign Affairs Committee may deliver an opinion to the Council of State.
 

Section 54e  [Council of State Report]

With the exception of those matters referred to in Paragraph (2) of Section 48, the Grand Committee shall, on request and otherwise when circumstances warrant, receive a report from the Council of State concerning the preparation of matters in the European Union. When necessary the Committee may deliver an opinion to the Council of State. The Speaker's Council may decide on the taking up of the report for debate in a plenary sitting at which, however, Parliament shall make no decision on the matter.
 

Section 54f  [Confidentiality]

Members of the committees participating in the consideration of  the European Union matters shall observe the confidentiality which the Committee, after hearing the Council of State, deems to be required by the nature of the matter. The provisions of Section 48 (4) shall apply in respect of members of the Foreign Affairs Committee.
 

Section 54g  [Treaty Amendment]

The provisions of Sections 54a and 54f shall correspondingly apply to matters that will be considered and that have been discussed at conferences of the representatives of the Member States of the European Union considering the amendment of the Treaties on which the European Union is founded.
 

Chapter 5  Consideration of Matters in Plenary Sitting and in the Grand Committee

 

Section 55  [Summons to Plenary Sittings]

(1) The Speaker shall issue the summons to plenary sittings, present the matters and preside over the debates therein, submit proposals for decision, maintain order in sittings and otherwise oversee that nothing contrary to a Constitutional Act is taken up for consideration. The Speaker shall also conclude a sitting.
(2) The Speaker shall not participate in a debate or a vote. Neither shall he propose anything other than what is necessary for the enforcement of the Constitutional Acts, the decisions of Parliament or the Procedure of Parliament.
(3) When the Speaker is prevented from attending to his duties, then the first Deputy Speaker shall take his place. If the first Deputy Speaker is also prevented, then the second Deputy Speaker shall attend to the duties of Speaker.
(4) If the Speaker and Deputy Speakers are prevented from attending to the duties of Speaker, then the plenary sitting shall be chaired by that member of the Speakers' Council most senior in years present in the sitting. In this case only no tices shall be considered and the time of the next plenary sitting announced in the sitting. Decisions relating to other matters shall not be made, unless especially compelling reasons otherwise warrant.
 

Section 56  [Publicity]

The consideration of matters in plenary sittings of Parliament shall be open to the public, unless Parliament otherwise decides in a specific instance.
 

Section 57  [Right to Take the Floor]

(1) In a plenary sitting each representative shall have the right, subject to the exceptions referred to in Sections 59 and 60, to take the floor in the order in which he has requested it. However, a representative may be given the floor in a dif-
ferent order in order to give a short reply to a comment made by another representative, as further provided in the Procedure of Parliament.
(2) However, when the State budget, a statement or report from the Council of State, an interpellation or another matter of consequence is under consideration, the representatives may be given the floor notwithstanding the provisions of Paragraph (1) in the order provided in the Procedure of Parliament. The provisions of Sections 59 and 60 on giving the floor shall also apply in these cases.
(3) Each representative shall have the right to speak freely and express his opinion, to be recorded in the minutes, on all matters under consideration at the time and on the legality of everything taking place in the parliamentary session.
(4) No one shall speak before being given the floor, nor without being recorded in the minutes.
 

Section 58  [Conduct of Representatives]

A representative shall conduct himself seriously and with dignity. No one shall use offensive, derisive or otherwise improper language about the government or private persons. If someone infringes this provision, the Speaker shall call him to order, and if he fails to heed the call, the Speaker shall deny him the floor. Otherwise it shall be for Parliament to investigate whether a representative who has contravened the order is to be admonished and warned by the Speaker or banned from attending the sittings of Parliament for a fixed period not exceeding two weeks, or whether charges are to be brought against him in a court of law, or whether the matter shall be allowed to lapse.
 

Section 59  [Government in Parliament]

The members of the Council of State and the Chancellor of Justice, as well as the Parliamentary Ombudsman, shall have the right to attend the sittings of Parliament and to participate in the debates. They shall not have the right to participate in the decisions, unless they are Members of Parliament. If one of them requests the floor, it shall be given to him before anyone else.
 

Section 60  [Presentation of Committee Reports]

The chairman of a committee or, when the committee has  elected the presenting member referred to in Section 45, the presenting member shall have the right to be given the floor before the other representatives, in order to present a report.
 

Section 61 {repealed on 15 July 1994}

 

Section 62  [Personal Interest Matters]

A representative may participate in the debate of a matter in which he has a personal interest, but may not participate in the decision on such a matter.
 

Section 63  [Matters to be Prepared in a Committee]

Before their final consideration in plenary sitting the following matters shall be prepared in a committee:
1) Government proposals;
2) Bills;
3) Budget proposals and petitionary proposals, unless they are dismissed immediately;
4) Decrees, government resolutions and ministerial decisions which have been submitted for the approval of Parliament;
5) Reports; and
6) Matters relating to parliamentary decisions conditionally entered into the budget and not ratified by the President of the Republic.
 

Section 64

Unless a matter referred to in Section 63, when presented for sending to a committee, is unanimously sent thereto, it shall be deferred until a closely following sitting. In such a sitting the matter may not be deferred again. However, a matter relating to a budget motion or a petitionary motion may be deferred, if Parliament so decides.
 

Section 65

(1) When first presented, the report of a special committee shall be deferred. When it is presented again for the first reading, it shall be deferred again, either following or without a debate, if two members so request. When a matter is again taken up after deferral in the first reading, it may no longer be deferred.
(2) The provisions of Paragraph (1) shall not apply in the second reading. However, when first presented, a report of the Grand Committee shall be deferred if two representatives so request.
 

Section 66  [Three Separate Readings]

(1) If the report of a committee pertains to the approval or dismissal of a legislative proposal, the matter shall be taken up in plenary sitting for three separate readings.
(2) In the first reading the report of the special committee shall be presented and the Members of Parliament shall be given an opportunity to express their opinions on the matter. When the debate on the matter has been formally concluded Parliament may, without making any further decision, send the matter to the Grand Committee. In its report the Grand Committee shall submit the proposals it deems necessary.
(3) In the second reading the report of the special committee or, if such has been submitted, the report of the Grand Committee shall be presented (again). Parliament shall examine the legislative proposal and make a decision on each of its various points. If the proposal of the Committee is approved in full, the second reading shall be formally concluded. Otherwise the legislative proposal shall be sent to the Grand Committee in the verbal form that Parliament has approved for it. The Grand Committee may recommend that the proposal be approved as it stands or with amendments, or that it be dismissed. If the Grand Committee has proposed alterations, Parliament shall decide whether they shall be approved or rejected, after which the second reading shall be formally concluded.
(4) If the committee report includes a legislative proposal, no motion to dismiss the proposal may be submitted in the second reading.
(5) During the second reading of a matter Parliament may request a new statement from the special committee that has prepared the matter, or from another special committee. The Grand Committee shall have the same right.
(6) In the third reading, which may take place no sooner than on the third day after the conclusion of the second reading, the matter shall be presented for a final decision. At that time Parliament may either approve the legislative proposal in the unamended form decided in the second reading, or dismiss it.
(7) {repealed on 17 July 1995}
(8) {repealed on 28 Aug 1992}

Section 66a {repealed on 28 Aug 1992}
 

Section 67  [Constitutional Amendment]

(1) In order to be adopted as a decision of Parliament, a proposal on the enactment, amendment, expounding or repeal of a Constitutional Act shall, after following the procedure laid down in Section 66, be approved by a majority of the votes cast in the third reading to be left in postponement until the first regular parliamentary session following an election. In the said session the proposal shall be approved in an unamended form by a decision that has received the support of no fewer than two thirds of the votes cast.
(2) However, if a proposal relating to a Constitutional Act is declared urgent by a decision made in a plenary sitting that has received the support of no fewer than five sixths of the votes cast, then the matter shall be resolved and a decision on the adoption of the proposal made, as provided in Paragraph (1), without leaving the matter in postponement.
(3) {repealed on 17 July 1995}
 

Section 67a  [Urgent Matters]

The proposal for an Act of Parliament containing provisions essential for the alleviation of an imminent severe disturbance in the national economy by the supervision and regulation of foreign trade, foreign payments, prices, rents, wages, interest rates and dividends, where the Act shall remain in force for no longer than two years, shall, if the matter concerns a Constitutional Act, be approved in the third reading by a decision that has received the support of two thirds of the votes cast without being declared urgent.
 

Section 68 {repealed on 28 Aug 1992}

 

Section 69  [Treaties]

(1) A legislative proposal relating to the approval of legislative provisions contained in a peace treaty or any other treaty between Finland and a foreign state shall be considered according to the provisions of Section 66. If the matter concerns a Constitutional Act, then the legislative proposal shall be approved in the third reading by a decision that has received the support of two thirds of the votes cast without being declared urgent.
(2) A proposal that Parliament approve a treaty provision whereby the State undertakes to maintain certain legislation for a fixed period, as well as a proposal that Parliament approve a non-legislative treaty or treaty provision that, according to a Constitutional Act or otherwise on the request of the government, is to be approved by Parliament, shall be considered without heed to the procedure provided for in Section 66, and a decision on the matter shall be made by a majority of votes. However, a proposal on a boundary change including a reduction in the territory of the State shall be deemed to have been approved by Parliament only if it has received the support of no fewer than two thirds of the votes cast.

Section 70  [Salary Bill]
A legislative proposal relating to the salaries of the representatives shall be considered according to the provisions of Section 66. The proposal shall, however, be deemed to have lapsed unless it has received the support of two thirds of the votes cast in the third reading.
 

Section 71  [Other Matters]

(1) Parliament may also send to the Grand Committee matters not referred to in Sections 66 and 67, Section 69 (1), and section 70. In such cases the provisions of Section 66 shall apply in such a way that the matter is considered in only two readings and decided in the second reading.
(2) Parliament may decide that a matter which has not been sent to the Grand Committee shall be considered in two readings and that the decision on the matter shall be made in the second reading. In such a case the second reading may take place no sooner than on the third day after the first reading.
(3) {repealed on 28 Aug 1992}
 

Section 72 {repealed on 28 Aug 1992}

 

Section 73  [Postponement]

(1) A legislative proposal approved to be left in postponement shall be taken up for consideration in the parliamentary session until which the proposal was left in postponement.
(2) After the competent committee has submitted a report on the matter the legislative proposal shall be either approved or dismissed without substantive amendment. However, a proposal for an Act of Parliament requiring the consent or approval of the Aaland Legislative Assembly may only be approved in an unamended form.
(3) {repealed on 17 July 1995}
 

Section 73a  [Refusal of Ratification]

An Act of Parliament which the President of the Republic has failed to ratify shall be taken up for consideration in the next regular parliamentary session after the Act was presented for ratification. After the competent committee has submitted a re-
port on the matter the Act shall be approved in a substantively unamended form or dismissed. This decision shall be made by a majority of votes. However, an Act requiring the consent or approval of the Aaland Legislative Assembly may only be approved in an unamended form.
 

Section 73b  [Matter Returned to Committee]

(1) If Parliament has not approved in an unamended form the report of a committee referred to in Section 73 (2) or Section 73a, then the matter shall be returned to the committee, which shall issue a report containing a statement on the decision made by Parliament.
(2) If the committee has concurred with the decision of Parliament, the decision shall be adopted as the final decision of Parliament on the matter. If the committee has proposed amendments, Parliament shall either approve these or shall hold to its prior decision.
 

Section 74  [Repeated Proposal]

The approval of a legislative proposal to be left in postponement or the failure to ratify an Act of Parliament do not preclude the submission of a government proposal or of a private member's bill on the matter to which the legislative proposal or the Act of Parliament relates. If a new Act on the matter is enacted on the basis of such a proposal or bill, then the legislative proposal in postponement and the unratified Act that has been returned to Parliament shall be deemed to have lapsed.
 

Section 75  [Tax Bills]

(1) A proposal relating to the levying of a new State tax, the alteration of an existing tax or the extension of a fixed-period tax shall be considered in Parliament as a special item evenwhen it is a part of the statements in the State budget proposal.
(2) A proposal to authorise the government to take out a loan and for the approval of the conveyance of real property, the issuing of a State surety or a State guarantee and the acquisition or relinquishing of a controlling interest of the State in a corporation shall be considered following the same procedure as the State budget proposal even when the proposal is not included in the budget proposal. A proposal for a decision of Parliament on the provisional application of the budget proposal shall also be considered following the same procedure.
(3) A proposal made by a representative concerning the inclusion in the budget of an appropriation or another decision not included in the government proposal may be considered when determining the budget only if the matter has been initiated with a duly submitted budget motion.
 

Section 76  [Matter Returned to Finance Committee]

(1) Unless Parliament has approved in an unamended form a report of the Finance Committee relating to a proposal for the State budget, the matter shall be returned to the Finance Committee. In its report the Committee shall issue a statement on the decision made by Parliament.
(2) If the Finance Committee has concurred with the decision of Parliament, the decision shall be adopted as the final decision of Parliament on the matter. If the Committee has proposed amendments, Parliament shall either approve these or hold to its prior decision.
(3) If the President of the Republic does not ratify a decision of Parliament that has been conditionally included in the budget, Parliament shall be immediately informed of the return of the matter. After the Finance Committee has submitted its report on the matter, the conditional decision of Parliament shall be approved in an unamended form or dismissed. If no decision on the matter has been made before the end of the financial year, then the matter shall be deemed to have lapsed.
 

Section 76a  [Provisional Budget]

If the publication of the State budget is delayed beyond the beginning of the financial year, the Finance Committee shall in its report propose to Parliament how the government proposal for the State budget is to apply as a provisional budget. Where applicable, the proposal of the Committee shall be considered following the same procedure as the budget proposal.
 

Section 77  [No Decision Without Debate]

No matter under debate may be presented for decision before Parliament, on the proposal of the Speaker, has formally concluded the debate.
 

Section 78  [Voting]

(1) When the debate has been formally concluded, the Speaker shall present a summary of the proposals submitted. If an objection is offered to the summary and the Speaker considers the objection justified, he shall rectify the summary. If, in the opinion of the Speaker, the objection does not warrant a change in the summary, Parliament shall decide the matter.
(2) After the summary the Speaker shall present a proposal for the voting order of the proposals. If a change in the voting order is demanded and the Speaker does not consider that the demand is justified, Parliament shall determine the voting order.
(3) After the voting order has been approved, the Speaker shall present the matter for voting in such a manner that the reply "yea" or "nay" expresses the decision of Parliament. If there are several proposals for the decision, one shall be presented for voting against another, until all of the proposals have been thus voted on.
(4) No further debate on the matters referred to in this section shall be permitted. Also, a vote on whether a vote should be taken shall not be permitted.
 

Section 79  [Dissenting Opinion]

Anyone who does not concur with a decision shall have the right to enter his dissenting opinion in the minutes. However, no further debate on such an opinion shall be permitted.
 

Section 80  [Exclusion of Matters]

(1) The Speaker shall not refuse to take up a matter that has been presented for consideration nor to present a matter for voting, unless he considers it to be contrary to a Constitutional Act, to an ordinary Act or to an existing  decision of Parliament. In such a case the Speaker shall state the grounds for his refusal.
(2) If Parliament is not satisfied with the action of the Speaker, the matter shall be submitted to the Committee for Constitutional Law. The Committee shall without delay deliver an opinion, including grounds, on whether the consideration of the matter or its presentation for voting is contrary to a Constitutional Act, to an ordinary Act or to an existing decision of Parliament. The opinion of the Committee on the matter shall be complied with.
 

Section 81  [Minutes]

(1) A decision shall not be changed in the process of examination.
(2) The remarks of a representative and the debate ensuing from these remarks can, with the consent of the representative and of Parliament, be deleted from the minutes during the examination thereof, unless a decision has clearly been based on the remarks.
 

Section 82  [Protocol About Absence]

A representative who was not present when the decision on a matter was made shall have the right to enter into the minutes afterwards that he has not participated in the making of the decision, but shall not have the right to object to the decision.
 

Chapter 6  Bank of Finland, Social Insurance Institution, Library of Parliament

 

Section 83  [Governors of the Bank of Finland]

(1) Parliament shall appoint nine Governors to supervise the administration and activities of the Bank of Finland and the administration of the funds for which Parliament is responsible. Parliament shall issue regulations for the Governors.
(2) Three Governors shall constitute the ordinary Governors' Committee, which shall consider all the matters that according to the regulations are not to be considered by the nine-member extended Governors' Committee. Six Governors shall constitute a quorum of the extended Governors' Committee.
(3) If a member of the ordinary Governors' Committee is prevented from attending to his duties or resigns, a Governor from the enlarged Governors' Committee shall take his place.
(4) The Governors shall be elected in the first session of an electoral period. Their term shall begin as soon as they have been elected and shall continue until new Governors have been elected. The election shall be performed by Parliament if the decision is unanimous. In the election it shall be determined which three Governors shall constitute the ordinary Governors' Committee and which two Governors, and in which order, shall if necessary replace each member of the ordinary Governors' Committee. If Parliament is unable to reach a consensus on the election, then it shall be conducted by the electors. If the electors are not unanimous in the election, then it shall beconducted by proportional ballot. (17 March 1995/338)
(5) In the same manner as provided in Paragraph (4) for the election of the Governors, in a regular parliamentary session Parliament shall annually elect five auditors to perform the audit of the accounts for the current financial year regarding the management of the Bank and  the aforesaid funds, which is to be performed after the end of the year. The electors shall also elect one deputy for each auditor. (17 March 1995/338)
 

Section 83a  [Trustees]

(1) Parliament shall appoint twelve trustees to supervise the administration and activities of the Social Insurance Institution and shall issue regulations for the trustees.
(2) The trustees shall be elected in the first regular parliamentary session following a parliamentary election. Their term shall begin as soon as they have been elected and shall continue until Parliament has performed a new election. Two deputies shall be elected for each trustee.
(3) The election shall be performed by Parliament if it is unanimous. If Parliament is unable to reach a consensus on the election, then it shall be performed by the electors. If the electors are not unanimous in the election, then it shall be conducted by proportional ballot.
 

Section 83b  [Library of Parliament]

Provisions on the Library of Parliament, which shall be a public service under the maintenance and supervision of Parliament for which Parliament shall also issue regulations, shall be prescribed by Act of Parliament.
 

Chapter 7  Measures Ensuing from the Decisions of Parliament. Parliamentary Session

 

Section 84  [Ratification]

An Act approved by Parliament shall be presented to the President of the Republic for ratification and issuing as an Act of Parliament. If the President does not ratify an Act, Parliament shall be notified of the return of the Act within four months of the date when it was presented to the President. If Parliament is not in session at the time, it shall be notified after it has convened in session.
 

Section 85  [Parliamentary Reply]

(1) The decision of Parliament on a government proposal shall be issued in a parliamentary reply. However, the decision of Parliament on the State budget shall be given in a communication of Parliament. The same shall apply to other decisions of Parliament and to notifications by Parliament.
(2) A reply of Parliament and a communication of Parliament intended for the government shall be delivered to the Council of State for presentation to the President of the Republic.
(3) A summation shall be compiled for each parliamentary session. The summation shall contain a list of the decisions that Parliament has made during the session. The summation  compiled for the last session of an electoral period, as well as for an extraordinary session, shall also contain a list of those government proposals, Decrees, government resolutions and reports, as well as ministerial decisions and reports, the consideration of which has not yet been concluded.
(4) The government shall be informed by a communication of Parliament of those matters in the summation referred to in Paragraph (3) above which have lapsed. If a report has been submitted by an authority other than the government, that authority shall be similarly informed.
 

Section 86  [Drafting Communications]

(1) The replies, communications and summations of Parliamentin the Finnish and Swedish languages shall be drafted by the office of Parliament under the supervision of the revisors.
(2) Parliament shall approve the communication which pertains to the election of the Speaker and the Deputy Speakers.
(3) The replies and communications of Parliament shall be signed by the Speaker and the Secretary-General of Parliament. The summation shall be signed by the Speaker and the Deputy Speakers.
(4) Parliament shall decide on the publication of the State budget in "The Statutes of Finland."
 

Chapter 8  Miscellaneous Provisions

 

Section 87  [Priority of Government Proposals]

Government proposals shall be given priority both in plenary sittings and in the committees.
 

Section 88  [Languages for Discussion]

(1) The Finnish or Swedish languages shall be used when matters are under consideration in Parliament.
(2) The reports and opinions of the committees, as well as the written proposals of the Speakers' Council and the office commission, shall be prepared in both of these languages.
(3) The written notifications from the government to Parliament shall also be drafted in both Finnish and Swedish.
 

Section 88a  [State Auditors]

In the first session of an electoral period Parliament shall appoint no fewer than five State auditors from among its members. The State auditors shall be elected by Parliament if it is unanimous on the election. If Parliament is unable to reach a consensus on the election, then it shall be conducted by the electors. If the electors are not unanimous on the election, then it shall be conducted by proportional ballot. An equal number of deputies shall be elected following the same procedure. Parliament shall confirm the regulations for the State auditors.
 

Section 88b  [International Delegates]

Provisions on the election of representatives of Parliament to international organs established by international treaties or otherwise shall be prescribed by Act of Parliament or in the Procedure of Parliament.
 

Section 89  [Office of Parliament]

(1) The office of Parliament shall function under the supervision of the office commission. The office commission shall consist of the Speaker and Deputy Speakers, as well as four representatives, who shall be elected by Parliament by  proportional ballot, unless a consensus can be reached on the election.
(2) The term of the representatives elected to the office commission shall continue for the electoral period.
(3) If necessary, the office commission may convene during an interruption of the parliamentary session, or after the session has been formally concluded, or after the dissolution of Parliament.
(4) {repealed on 31 Dec 1987}
 

Section 90  [Organizational Provisions]

(1) Parliament shall issue its own Procedure and electoral rules, as well as regulations for the parliamentary officials.
(2) Further provisions on the number of the electors and of the members and deputy members of the committees, as well as on the work of Parliament, shall be issued in the Procedure of Parliament.
 

Section 91  [Publication of Minutes]

The minutes of the plenary sittings of Parliament and the parliamentary documents referred to in the Procedure of Parliament shall be published in print.
 

Section 92  [Parliamentary Expenses]

All parliamentary expenses shall be met from State funds.
 

Section 93  [Calculation of Dates]

(1) Should any fixed day or the last day of any fixed period provided in this Act fall on a holiday, Independence Day, May Day, Christmas Eve or Midsummer Eve, or on a Saturday, the following weekday shall be considered to be the fixed day or the last day of the fixed period.
(2) The fixed period provided in this Act for a measure to be performed in Parliament shall not include any period while Parliament is not in session. When a parliamentary session is interrupted, the remainder of any such fixed period shall be counted from the date when Parliament reconvenes.
 

Chapter 9  Concluding Provision

 

Section 94  [Repeal]

(1) This Parliament Act shall repeal the Parliament Act of 20 July 1906, as amended by the Acts of 31 Dec 1917, 29 May 1918, 22 Oct 1918 and 17 April 1919. This Act shall in all respects enter into force as a Constitutional Act, and may not be amended, expounded or repealed, nor may exceptions from it be made, otherwise than following the prescribed procedure for Constitutional Acts in general.
(2) The legal provisions governing the Estates of Finland shall, unless otherwise provided in this Parliament Act, apply to Parliament as composed according to this Constitutional Act.

For methodology see: Comparing Constitutions and International Constitutional Law.
© 1994 - May 29th, 2010 / Translation provided by M. Scheinin.
For corrections please contact A. Tschentscher.