Rome

Griffi calls for 'surgery' on fiscal federalism laws

Pressure growing for stricter corruption checks

Griffi calls for 'surgery' on fiscal federalism laws

(ANSA) - Rome, October 3 - Italy's Minister of Public Administration says his government is considering "surgery" on the laws giving fiscal power to regional governments. "The government is considering surgery on Title V of the Constitution with regard to the functions of the provinces and local authorities," Filippo Patroni Griffi told hearings of the House's constitutional affairs committee Wednesday. The Italian constitution gives a great deal of legislative and financial authority to regional governments. Many of these bodies, however, have recently been caught up in a string of political scandals. Pressure has been growing on the regions to impose stricter checks on corruption in politics since the center-right People of Freedom (PdL) party, headed by former premier Silvio Berlusconi, was hit by a scandal that led to the arrest on Monday of Franco Fiorito. The disgraced former caucus leader of the party in the Lazio was arrested on accusations of embezzlement and taken to prison after judges found there was a risk he could re-offend or tamper with evidence. Investigators are said to looking at over 800,000 euros of financial transactions linked to Fiorito. Other scandals have reached the regions of Lombardy, Campania, Puglia, and Sicily.

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