Beijing Cracks Down on Deluxe Government Buildings – CCTV

 Dy C 2007-09-23 U660P1T1D13954178F21Dt20070923225855The central government is reining in out-of-budget deluxe government buildings and complexes. But the exposed cases are outrageous, especially given the poverty levels of localities. Translated from CCTV’s News Probe program:

“When you dress up and make yourself good-looking, there comes a lot of controversy,” complained Shi Yunlong (Âè≤‰∫ëÈæô), deputy governor of Yingquan District (È¢çÊ≥âÂå∫) of Anhui’s Fuyang City. He was referring to the White House-like government building the district leaders built from relocation proceeds and funds from a government-run business. Asked whether the project was too luxurious, Shi said, “the total budget was only 14 million.”

And he said the decision was based on the intention to promote the cultural background of two ancient poets, Ouyang Xiu (ʨßÈò≥‰øÆ) and Su Dongpo (Ëãè‰∏úÂù°), both of whom had experiences at Fuyang. Ou Su, referring to the names of the poets, sound similar to “Europe.”

This is just one of many out-of-budget government building spending cases as Beijing tries to rein in local corruption. Prime Minister Wen Jiabao stressed in his report that “we should strictly control new buildings or extension projects for governments, luxurious offices should be prohibited, and we should try to reduce administrative costs and build a frugal government.”

A list of exposed illegitimate projects include:

A Tiananmen tower-like government compound at Caoji Township (ÊõπÈõ܉π°) of Henan’s Xiayi County (§èÈÇëÂéø);

Chengda Hotel (成大酒店) built by Zhaotong City (昭通市) Taxation Bureau of Yunnan, some of which became the location of a prostitution business;

A 50-million yuan tower with a variety of entertainment facilities built by Shanxi provincial civil affairs bureau, stealing disaster-relief funds;

A deluxe office building for Ninghua County (宁化县) forestry bureau of Fujian, built with illegal proceeds from selling timber logging permits;

Office, hotel and residential buildings by Honghe Prefecture (红河州) civil affairs bureau out of rural pension funds;

A 100-million-yuan administration services center built by Yizhou City (宜州市) of Guangxi, with inflated number of employees to dilute office space per head.

[Full Text in Chinese]

[Image: the “grain god palace” built by Shanxi provincial bureau of grain to promote grain education with calligraphic works from officials at various local grain bureaus, via]


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