ALDE Party welcomes landmark vote for a single seat for the European Parliament
The ALDE Party has welcomed today’s landmark vote in the European Parliament where MEPs decided categorically in favour of treaty change that would allow them to decide where to meet.
483 MEPS opted for treaty change while 141 voted against.
The monthly Brussels-Strasbourg shuttle has been condemned as unsustainable and many think the Parliament would be more effective, cost-efficient and environmentally-friendly if it were located in a single place. The ALDE Party has long advocated the need for the European Parliament to have one seat, rather than two: Brussels and Strasbourg.
Liberal Democrat MEP Edward McMillan-Scott is at the forefront of the campaign to end the monthly move. He said: “This is the first time the vote on whether to change the treaty and let Parliament and not governments decide where the assembly sits has come before a plenary session.”
“At a time when the call for EU reform cannot be ignored, and particularly given the economic crisis Europe has been weathering for a number of years now, the expense of shuttling the assembly between Brussels and Strasbourg cannot be justified.”
The obligation for the European Parliament to meet 12 times per year in Strasbourg is written in the European Treaties. Over the last few years MEPs have voted in favour of the Parliament having a single seat, but only a unanimous decision of EU member states can change the Treaty.