“I have come to the conclusion that it is not possible”, Rutte said today in the debate on the budget of the royal house, after the insistence of D66, GroenLinks PvdA, SP and DENK to provide insight. He expressed his regret that he had said earlier that he would.
The parties who want clarity want to be sure that the amount is sufficient or that it may be too much.
Expenses royal house
King Willem-Alexander will receive a total of more than 6.1 million euros. For the first time, his personal income is slightly above 1 million euros: that rises by 9,000 euros from 998,000 this year to 1,007,000 euros in 2022. The other 5.1 million, the B component, is for his direct staff. and intended for material private expenses that are related to his function.
The estimated total expenditure for the royal family will increase from 45.7 million euros to 48.2 million euros next year. This is mainly due to higher royalties and the inflation adjustment of costs. The benefit that the members of the royal family receive amounts to a total of 10.5 million euros. That is 1.6 million euros more than the almost 8.9 million euros that was reserved for it in 2021.
The money that Princess Amalia returns to the state treasury will be processed in the following budgets.
Rutte acknowledged that his commitment a year ago had been made too generously. “I was too excited about that at the time.” According to the prime minister, it is not possible to make a distinction between expenses for the function of king and those that affect the private sphere. And that privacy is legally protected, says Rutte. “After all, the king is king 24 hours a day,” Rutte said.
D66 MP Joost Sneller wants the amount to be reviewed every five years. “The Prime Minister says it can never be evaluated. How can that be?” He pointed out that, for example, it could be looked at by a special committee. Just like the commission that oversees the secret services.
Functions of ministers
Rutte was also questioned about the new positions of ministers Van Veldhoven and Van Nieuwenhuijzen. The SP and DENK, among others, wanted to know whether, according to Rutte, it is ethical that the ministers had been present at budget discussions during their application.
Rutte pointed out that he thinks it is good that ministers also look for a new job when their term ends. He denied that he had acted with integrity. “I really think this went right.”
Frist Wester: ‘Discussion keeps returning’
Political commentator Frits Wester followed the debate today. “For the time being, Rutte has managed to suppress the discussion about the King’s income again. But the stocking is not finished. You can bet it will continue to flare up as long as the obscurity surrounding the expenditure in the so-called B component persists.”