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Pres. Lee Signs School Impact Fees Refund Act

Posted March. 12, 2008 08:10,   


On Tuesday, President Lee Myung-bak signed the School Impact Fees Refund Special Act, which had earlier been vetoed by former President Roh Moo-hyun.

Some 250,000 Korean households, that already paid the fees, will get back a total of 450 billion won.

Since the act will be effective six months after its promulgation, people can apply for a refund in September.

Presidential spokesperson Lee Dong-kwan said, in a briefing immediately after the cabinet meeting, “There were disagreements over whether the president should veto the bill or not, but he decided not to veto it.”

The National Assembly passed a similar bill on Feb.12, but then-President Roh vetoed it, saying, “Retroactive legislation is not right whenever it turns out the law is unconstitutional.”

On Feb. 22, the Assembly passed a revised bill under which refund burdens are the local governments’ but the central government financially supports the school impact fees in shared taxes.

The spokesman said, “If the financial burden and similar cases are taken into consideration, it can be a problem. But after the Grand National Party said in the government-party negotiation that it would not legislate similar laws in the future. It agreed to accept the decision but with much public reluctance.”

As for funding, Strategy and Finance Minister Kang Man-soo said he would finance the refund from the national treasury, shared local revenue, and the local treasury.

mhpark@donga.com ceric@donga.com