Barefoot Investor: Italy to slash political costs in new austerity

Italy vows to cut down its huge bureaucratic and political costs as part of austerity moves

The Italian government is vowing that a new austerity package will slash Italy's huge bureaucratic and political costs, with thousands of jobs and elected posts being gradually eliminated and a myriad of the country's tiny towns losing their administrations.

Premier Silvio Berlusconi acknowledged the cuts were in some cases "excessive," but said they were approved because of widespread discontent among citizens over the perks enjoyed by the ruling class at a time of belt-tightening.

The government approved the euro45.5 billion ($64.84 billion) emergency package Friday seeking to balance the budget by 2013 in response to demands from the European Central Bank.

Cabinet minister Roberto Calderoli vowed Saturday to cut the number of national lawmakers and eliminate local governments for some small towns and villages. (AP-Associated Press)


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