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会計検査院報告 不適切な予算執行に猛省を

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Nov. 7, 2012)
Govt offices lack awareness of critical fiscal conditions
会計検査院報告 不適切な予算執行に猛省を(11月6日付・読売社説)

Central government offices, it appears, are unaware that state finances are in a critical situation.
 中央省庁には、財政が危機的な状況にあるという認識が欠如しているのではないか。

This is the only deduction that can be made from an annual Board of Audit report on government accounts for fiscal 2011, which lists inappropriate government spending. A total of 529.6 billion yen in state funds were misused, the second-highest on record.
 会計検査院がまとめた2011年度の決算検査報告書には、そう思うしかない不適切な予算執行が列挙されている。指摘された無駄遣いの総額は、過去2番目に多い5296億円に上った。

The report found 89 sewage treatment plants across the country were being poorly operated after being built with subsidies from the Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry. An excessive number of the plants were constructed due to erroneous demographic forecasts, causing spending of 25.7 billion yen to literally go down the drain.
 国土交通省からの補助を受けて自治体が整備する下水処理場で、稼働実績の乏しい施設が全国で89か所あった。人口予測を誤り、施設を造り過ぎたためで、国費257億円が無駄になった。

Due to a failure in a screening system development project, the Patent Office suffered a loss of 5.4 billion yen that was paid to contractors. The board blamed this on the Patent Office's inadequate supervision and a lack of technical expertise on the part of the contractors.
 特許庁は、審査システム開発事業の失敗で、請負業者に支払った開発費54億円が損失となる。業者の技術力不足に加え、特許庁の管理態勢が不十分だったことが原因と、報告書は指摘する。

Wasteful spending was also found in the income compensation system for individual farming households, which the Democratic Party of Japan-led administration trumpeted as one of its centerpiece policies. The Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry was found to have provided subsidies to farming families ineligible for the money due to their poor handling of fertilizers.
 民主党政権が目玉政策の一つとする農家への戸別所得補償制度でも、農林水産省は肥料の管理が劣悪で補償対象にならない農家にまで交付金を支払っていた。

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Soul-searching urged

Government ministries and agencies must take seriously what has been pointed out by the board and ensure they spend their budgets properly.
 各省庁は検査院の指摘を重く受けとめ、適切な予算執行に努めなければならない。

It has once again been brought to light that not enough financial support has reached disaster-stricken areas to promote projects for reconstruction from the Great East Japan Earthquake.
 東日本大震災の復興事業では、被災地に支援が十分行き渡らない実態も改めて浮かび上がった。

Of about 14.9 trillion yen earmarked in the fiscal 2011 budget for reconstruction projects, just 54 percent was spent.
 11年度に計上された約14兆9000億円の復興予算のうち、使われたのは54%にとどまった。

Even allowing for the urgent need to secure budgets for reconstruction, in many cases budgets were formulated without confirming the actual needs of disaster-affected areas and their ability to put this money to work. A classic example was evident in projects for restoring agricultural facilities. Applications for financial support were sluggish because subsidies were limited to projects that would restore these facilities to their original condition.
 緊急に予算を確保する必要があったとはいえ、被災地のニーズと対処する能力を把握しないまま、予算を組んだケースも少なくない。その典型例が農業施設復旧事業だ。原状復旧だけを対象としたため、申し込みが低調だった。

The board called for the Reconstruction Agency and other government offices to work out fiscal assistance measures by assessing correctly the conditions of disaster-affected municipalities. This is a natural course of action.
 検査院が復興庁などに対し、被災自治体の状況を踏まえた支援を求めたのは当然と言えよう。

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Meet local needs

A questionnaire survey conducted by the board of 58 affected cities, towns and villages showed they wanted government officials with expertise in civil engineering and construction dispatched to help and long-term personnel support. They also demanded that complicated paperwork be simplified.
 被災した58市町村を対象に検査院が実施したアンケートでは、土木・建築分野の専門職員の派遣や長期的な人材支援、さらに、煩雑な事務手続きの簡略化などを求める声が寄せられている。

There is no doubt that increased burdens placed on local governments due to a shortage of employees are hampering the progress of reconstruction. The government must establish an assistance system that can meet the needs of affected local governments.
 自治体職員の不足に伴う負担の増大が、復興の足かせになっていることは間違いない。政府はこうした現地の要望に応える支援態勢を整える必要がある。

Some central government offices were found to have used reconstruction budgets for projects that did not directly help disaster-damaged areas. That the board in the first place never suspected reconstruction budgets might be diverted for other purposes and stopped short of pointing this out is just not good enough.
 復興予算を巡っては、各省庁が被災地支援に直接結びつかない事業に「転用」した問題も判明している。検査院に当初、転用を疑問とする視点がなく、指摘に至らなかったのは物足りない。

We want the Board of Audit to check exhaustively whether national spending has been used effectively for reconstruction in affected areas, and scrutinize budgetary appropriations themselves.
 予算の内容精査とともに、被災地で使われた国費が復興に有効活用されたかどうかも、検査院はしっかりチェックしてほしい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Nov. 6, 2012)
(2012年11月6日01時32分 読売新聞)
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by kiyoshimat | 2012-11-08 03:55 | 英字新聞

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