Photo: Getty / Brendan Hoffman
In keeping with his attempts to ensure transparency, austerity, and better fiscal practices, Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti has asked that his government makes ministers’ previous tax records available on the government website in a move dubbed ‘Operation Transparency’. And it seems like not everyone has been affected by the long-running fiscal crisis and austerity measures in Europe, especially in Italy.
Italians were shocked to learn how many of their ministers owned villas, town houses, and expensive cars and yachts, to say nothing of the amount of money they used to make before being sworn into the cabinet (all ministers now get 200,000 euros, or $265,000 on an average every year). So much so, that the site temporarily crashed because of increased traffic, The Telegraph reports.
However, the ministers themselves were unfazed by the attention. “The most important thing is explaining that those who earn and pay their taxes must be judged positively, while those who generate off-the-books income must be judged negatively,” Justice Minister Severino told reporters, according to Italymag.
Position: Minister for Economic Development, Infrastructure, and Transportation
Former profession: Head of Italian bank Intesa San Paolo
Income in 2010: 3.5 million euros ($4.6 million)
Other assets: Properties in Casale Marittimo and Parigi
Position: Prime Minister, Minister for Economy and Finance
Former profession: President of Bocconi University
Income in 2010: 1 million euros ($1.3 million)
Other assets: Sixteen properties, including apartments in Milan and Varese, and a 50 per cent share in a flat in Brussels
Position: Minister for Labour and Social Affairs with responsibility for Equal Opportunities
Former profession: Vice-Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Intesa San Paolo, Director of Buzzi Unicem (a cement manufacturing company), and Professor of Art, University of Turin
Income in 2010: 402,000 euros ($533,000)
Other assets: Properties, and second and third homes in Turin, Courmayeur, and San Carlo Canavese
Position: Minister for Regional Affairs, Tourism, and Sports
Former profession: Founder of Studio Gnudi (a tax consultancy firm), Director of Unicredit (a multinational bank), among other things
Income in 2010: 1.72 million euros ($2.3 million)
Other assets: A 'Gozzo Apreamare 10' (a small-ish yacht)
Position: Minister for Relations with Parliament
Former profession: Among other things, Chairman, President, and Vice President of various companies; Professor at the University of Calabria, and the Catholic University of Milan
Income in 2010: 262,000 euros ($347,000)
Other assets: Four stone and wood hamlets in the Alps, farmland in Cassina Valsassina, and an apartment and garage in Milan
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