Supreme Court of Justice (Austria)
The Supreme Court of Justice in Austria is the final court of appeal for criminal and civil lawsuits other than administrative. The court deals with service-related complaints by jurists against the judiciary and with disciplinary complaints against jurists. In addition to its adjudicative responsibilities, the court is charged with running the Republic's official public law library and with publishing appraisals of draft legislation presented to the National Council by the government. In spite of its name, the court is not a supreme court in the strict sense of the term: it has no powers of judicial review, does not adjudicate on liability claims against the Republic and its bureaucracy, does not handle impeachments of elected officials, does not resolve demarcation conflicts; the court does not have a fixed number of members. As of the early 21st century, there are between fifty and sixty justices on the court; the responsibility for appointing Supreme Court justices is vested in the President of Austria, but the President can and does delegate this task to the minister of justice.
The minister picks from a shortlist of three nominees provided by the court itself. The Supreme Court of Justice convenes in the Palace of Justice in Vienna; the Austrian judiciary is divided into general courts of public law. The courts of public law supervise the other two branches of government. One of its limbs, the administrative court system, reviews the legality of administrative acts, its other limb, the Constitutional Court, adjudicates on liability claims against the Republic, its provinces, its municipalities, demarcation conflicts between courts or between courts and bureaucrats, complaints regarding the constitutionality of statutes or the legality of ordinances, election complaints, complaints regarding the conduct of elected officials and political appointees in office. The general courts handle all remaining civil cases and all criminal trials as well as non-adversary proceedings such as inheritance cases or legal guardianship matters; the hierarchy of general courts has four levels: district, higher regional, supreme.
For most cases, original jurisdiction lies with one of the 115 district courts. Some cases are first tried before one of the 18 regional courts and can be appealed to the relevant higher regional court; the four higher regional courts and the Supreme Court of Justice do not have original jurisdiction. The constitutional right to an appeal is taken in Austria. Any party to any trial before a general court can file an appeal on facts and law. If the case is a civil case, the appellate court first checks whether the trial court has committed procedural errors. If no, or if the case is criminal, the appellate court conducts what is a retrial itself − the appellate trial does not review questions of law but questions of fact, assessing evidence and questioning witnesses. In addition to the appeal on facts and law against the verdict of the trial court, an appeal at law can be filed against the verdict of the appellate court. In criminal cases, appeals at law that are not frivolous are handled in public hearings.
A successful appeal at law not just overturns but complete erases the verdict of the appellate court, sending the case down the ladder again. Verdicts of trial courts − although not of appellate courts − that result from the trial court's application of an unconstitutional statute or an illegal ordinance can additionally be fought with extraordinary appeals at law to the Constitutional Court; the Supreme Court of Justice hears appeals at law against verdicts of lower appellate courts. In addition to its role in public trials, the court deals with some of the Austrian judiciary's internal disputes, it hears, as the court of original jurisdiction, complaints lodged by judges against the bureaucracy and disciplinary complaints against certain senior judges and prosecutors. It has appellate jurisdiction in disciplinary proceedings against lower-ranking judges and prosecutors and notaries. Decisions handed down by the court are final. In addition to its adjudicative functions, the court is charged with publishing appraisals of draft legislation presented to the National Council by the government.
The court does not have the authority to veto legislation and neither does it have the soft power to make draft bills politically untenable. Austria is a parliamentary democracy in which most bills originate not with individual legislators but with the cabinet. Formal expert opinions on draft bills offered by political lobbying groups, professional associations, regional governments, various arms of the national bureaucracy are a routine part
Vice-Chancellor of Austria
The Vice-Chancellor of Austria is a member of the Federal Government and the deputy of the Chancellor. The current Vice Chancellor of Austria is Heinz-Christian Strache, in office since 2017. Art. 69 of the Constitution of Austria states: The Vice-Chancellor stands in for the Federal Chancellor in his complete field of functions. If both Federal Chancellor and Vice Chancellor are hindered, the Federal President appoints a member of the government to represent the Federal Chancellor. In practice, the Vice-Chancellor is the leading member of the junior party within the current coalition government the party chairman. If only one party is represented in the government, the Vice Chancellor is the Chancellor's presumed successor. Austria annexed by Nazi Germany in 1938. Independence restored in 1945. Chancellor of Austria
Supreme Administrative Court (Austria)
In the Republic of Austria, the Supreme Administrative Court is the appellate court that decisions of the country's eleven administrative trial courts can be appealed to. The Supreme Administrative Court resolves demarcation disputes within the administrative court system and hears complaints about administrative trial courts that fail to issue verdicts required of them in a timely manner; the court does not have a fixed number of members. The theoretical minimum is seven. Members are appointed by the President of Austria on nomination of the cabinet. With respect to most appointments, the cabinet is limited to choosing from a shortlist of three candidates provided by the court; the court is subdivided into 21 panels of three to five members each, each panel handling cases in a specific area of law. The current president of the Supreme Administrative Court, appointed in January 2014, is Rudolf Thienel. Austrian general courts have no power of judicial review. Judicial review of Austrian legislation is provided by a specialized Constitutional Court.
Judicial review of acts of the executive branch of the Austrian government, broadly speaking, is the responsibility of a system of specialized administrative courts. There are some exceptions to this general rule: Complaints regarding the legality of executive ordinances are handled not by the administrative courts but by the Constitutional Court. In the Austrian system of judicial review, only the Constitutional Court has the power to strike legislation. Since secondary legislation counts as legislation too, this applies to ordinances just as it applies to statutes. Misconduct by executive authorities acting in their capacity as regular economic operators is dealt with by the general court system. If the police fails to pay an invoice, for example, the claimant files a civil suit in the appropriate district court or regional court: the police has not done anything a private individual or business could not have done as well. If the police fails to refund an improperly imposed fine, on the other hand, the claimant files suit in an administrative court: the claim derives from a decision the police has made in its capacity as an arm of state power.
This exception has exceptions itself. In effect, the administrative court system hears complaints about decisions made by executive officials that involve their authority as parts of the executive branch; the constitution provides a taxative enumeration of the types of decisions that can be fought in an administrative court: written rulings and assessments. The administrative court system has two levels: administrative trial courts, which have original jurisdiction, the Supreme Administrative Court, which hears appeals against the verdicts of the lower courts and which supervises them in other respects as well; the international scholarly literature translates "Verwaltungsgerichtshof" as Supreme Administrative Court. Prior to 2014, a minority of authors used the literal translation, Administrative Court; the literal translation was reasonably unambiguous at the time because every other tribunal in the Austrian administrative judiciary was called not a "court" but a "senate". A 2014 reform of the administrative judiciary replaced the senates with Verwaltungsgerichte, singular Verwaltungsgericht, a word that translates to Administrative Court.
The reform thus rendered the literal translation unusable. The court itself uses Supreme Administrative Court in the English version of its website; the Supreme Administrative Court hears appeals against verdicts handed down by administrative trial courts. Appeals to the Supreme Administrative Court are appeals at law. There are no appeals on facts and law like there are in the general court system, appeals at law are more difficult to get accepted; the court has comparatively little latitude in deciding which to decline. It has to decline hearing the appeal if not; the court has to assume that a question of law is of wider importance if the verdict in question appears inconsistent with a decision the court has handed down in the past, if it has never dealt with the question before, or if it has dealt with the question multiple times and the relevant decisions appear to be inconsistent with each other. The court may decide that a question of law is of wider importance in the absence of any of these factors.
The court does not hear appeals of verdicts that uphold trivial administrative fines, in cases in which no significant fine and no imprisonment would have been possible in theory. If the offense at issue is finable but not jailable, the maximum fine does not exceed €750, the actual fine imposed does not exceed €400, the court is not permitted to take the case; the Supreme Administrative Court hears complaints about an administrative trial court's failure to issue a verdict in a timely manner. The righ
Walter Rosenkranz is an Austrian politician, a Member of the National Council for the Freedom Party of Austria since 2008
Federal Assembly (Austria)
The Federal Assembly is the name given to a formal joint session of the two houses of the bicameral Austrian Parliament, the National Council and the Federal Council. It is chaired by the presidents of the two parliamentary chambers taking turns presiding over its sessions. According to the Federal Constitutional Law, the Federal Assembly does not function as a legislative body. Since 1945, the assembly has only met to swear the elected President of Austria into office. While during the pre-war First Austrian Republic, the Assembly convened to elect the Austrian president, a direct election was implemented by a 1929 amendment; this provision however did not become effective until 1951, when Theodor Körner became the first president directly elected by the Austrian people. Since the principal responsibility is to convene for the ceremonial swearing-in of the president, it met at the inauguration of Alexander Van der Bellen's first term as Austrian President on 26 January 2017. In theory, the Federal Assembly functions as an instrument of checks and balances.
The assent of the Assembly would be required for the president's immunity against criminal prosecution to be withdrawn. Furthermore, it is responsible for declaring war. Neither of these powers, has so far been exercised. Official web site
Franz Vranitzky is an Austrian politician. A member of the Social Democratic Party of Austria, he was Chancellor of Austria from 1986 to 1997; as the son of a foundryman, Vranitzky was born into humble circumstances in Vienna's 17th district. He attended the Realgymnasium Geblergasse and studied economics, graduating in 1960, he financed his studies teaching English and as a construction worker. As a young man, Vranitzky played basketball and was a member of Austria's national team, which in 1960 unsuccessfully tried to qualify for the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome. In 1962 he joined the Social Democratic Party of Austria. In 1962, Vranitzky married Christine Christen. Vranitzky began his career in 1961 at Siemens-Schuckert, but within the year switched to the Oesterreichische Nationalbank, Austria’s central bank. In 1969, he received a doctorate in International business studies; the following year, Hannes Androsch, minister of finance under Chancellor Bruno Kreisky, appointed him economic and financial advisor.
Vranitzky served as deputy director of the Creditanstalt-Bankverein as its director general and as director general of the Österreichische Länderbank. In 1984, Vranitzky joined the SPÖ-Freedom Party government coalition under Chancellor Fred Sinowatz as minister of finance, he was criticized for receiving multiple compensations from his various functions in government-run businesses. In the presidential elections of 1986, Chancellor Sinowatz vociferously opposed Kurt Waldheim, the candidate of the Austrian People's Party opposition; the former UN Secretary General's campaign for office caused international controversy due to allegations about his role as a German army officer in World War II. When Waldheim was elected on 8 June, Sinowatz resigned from the government, proposing Vranitzky as his successor. Vranitzky entered his new office on 16 June 1986. At first he continued the government coalition with the Freedom Party. On 13 September 1986, radical FPÖ politician Jörg Haider was elected chairman of his party, ousting the moderate Vice Chancellor Norbert Steger.
Vranitzky had parliament dissolved. In the subsequent elections on 23 November 1986, the SPÖ remained the strongest party. In January 1987, Vranitzky formed a government, based on a grand coalition with the second-largest party, the Christian democrat ÖVP, with Alois Mock serving as vice-chancellor and foreign minister. In 1988, Vranitzky succeeded Fred Sinowatz as chairman of his party; until 1992, Austria's foreign policy had to deal with the repercussions of the Waldheim controversy, as the Austrian president was shunned in some diplomatic circles. The United States regarded Waldheim as a persona non grata, thereby barring him from entering the country in 1987, while Israel had recalled its ambassador after Waldheim's election. Vranitzky managed to normalise Austria's relations with both countries and stepped in to perform diplomatic duties assigned to the president. On 8 July 1991, in a speech in parliament, Vranitzky acknowledged a share in the responsibility for the pain brought, not by Austria as a state, but by citizens of this country, upon other people and peoples", thereby departing from the hitherto official portrayal of Austria as "Hitler's first victim."
After the end of the Cold War, Vranitzky focused on furthering relations with the nations of Eastern Europe and membership in the European Union, of which Vranitzky and his foreign minister, Alois Mock, were strong advocates. After a referendum on 12 June 1994 resulted in 66% in favour of EU membership, Austria joined the European Union in January 1995. Austria's military neutrality, espoused during the Cold War, was reaffirmed in the process. In party politics, Vranitzky kept his distance from Jörg Haider's Freedom Party - a stance the latter decried as a "policy of exclusion." In the election of 1990, Vranitzky's coalition government was confirmed when the Social Democrat vote remained stable while the ÖVP lost 17 seats to the FPÖ. The 1994 election saw heavy losses by both coalition parties, which nonetheless remained the two largest parties, while FPÖ and others made further gains. Vranitzky renewed the coalition with the ÖVP, which after May 1995 was led by foreign minister Wolfgang Schüssel.
In the year, the grand coalition broke apart over budget policy, leading to the elections of December 1995, which however only saw slight changes in favor of SPÖ and ÖVP. Vranitzky and Schüssel resumed their coalition in March 1996. In January 1997, Vranitzky resigned as party chairman, he was succeeded in both positions by his minister of Viktor Klima. After leaving office, Vranitzky served as Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe representative for Albania from March to October 1997, before returning into the banking sector, as political consultant to the WestLB bank. In December, he was elected to the board of governors of automotive supplier Magna, he occupied the same position for the tourism company TUI and Magic Life hotels. In June 2005, he donated one of his kidneys to his wife Christine, who suffered from chronic kidney failure, he supported his party's frontrunner Alfred Gusenbauer in the 2006 elections. During the campaign it was revealed, that in 1999, Vranitzky had received a million Austrian schillings as a consultant to the BAWAG bank, under public scrutiny.
It was alleged that the payment was made without any service in return and that it constituted an "indirect party funding". Vranitzky denounced the allegations. Vranitzky chairs the quarterly Vranitzky colloquia, organised by the study group WiWiPol, which discusses economic topics and their
Johannes Voggenhuber is an Austrian politician and former Member of the European Parliament for the Austrian Green Party, part of the European Greens. He was vice president of the Parliament's Constitutional Affairs Committee. From 1982 to 1987, he was member of the city council in Salzburg. From 1988 to 1992, he was federal spokesman for the Austrian Greens, between 1990 and 1996, Member of the National Council of Austria. From 1995 to 2009 he was Member of the European Parliament, he has two children. "Johannes Voggenhuber". Aeiou Encyclopedia