Tuesday 14 July 2020

10 hours a week in the senate, so what else do senators do?

The 75 new members of the senate have 319 other jobs between them, some paid, some voluntary, the NRC said on Tuesday.

The paper bases its claims on an analysis of senators’ online profiles, trade registers and the senate website but notes that the list is not complete because not all other roles are registered.

The job of senator is not considered to be full time and on paper is said to take 10 hours a week.

New senators have far fewer other jobs than those who have been in the upper house of parliament for several years – three compared with and average of six for old-timers, the NRC said. The CDA’s nine senators top the list, with 71 ‘other’ jobs between them.

This year’s senators will have to comply with a new integrity code in which they will have to detail the work they actually do for third parties. In addition, their interests in a particular subject will have to be recorded when draft legislation is being debated.

Conflicts of interest have led to several senators leaving the upper house – most recently VVD senator Anne-Wil Duthler who was removed from the party after voting in favour of legislation advised on by a company she owned.

In 2015, VVD senator Loek Hermans resigned after a home nursing company he was president of went bust and the court partly blamed Hermans for being too busy to do his job properly.

Three of the new senators – two from the anti-immigration PVV and one from the nationalist Forum voor Democratie – have two other jobs. They both serve on city and provincial councils as well as the senate, the NRC said.

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