Minister gets tough on recalcitrant civil servants

Administrative Reform Minister Antonis Manitakis upped the pressure on civil service administrators resisting government efforts to streamline the public sector by passing a legislative act introducing stiff penalties for noncompliance.

The act – which does not require parliamentary approval – introduces monetary and disciplinary penalties against recalcitrant state employees.

According to the act, baulkers may see their state funding frozen, face disciplinary action or suffer a suspension of pay if they fail to incorporate all of their staff – including those on open contracts – in the across-the-board pay structure for civil servants. The measure is aimed at rooting out employees who do not have permanent status yet remain on the payroll when they should be among those considered for the labor reserve scheme, which puts employees on reduced wages for a year before their status is reviewed.

In a related development, municipal workers on Thursday clashed with police during a protest rally outside a hotel in northern Athens that was hosting a meeting of Greek and German local administrators.