Lawmakers in Greece Approve Austerity Bill
Lawmakers in Greece approved a bill which contains new austerity measures and economic overhauls under its new bailout program. 155 members of Syriza (leftist party) that now runs the government under Alexis Tsipras (Prime Minister), and the Independent Anel Greeks voted in favor of the bill, and 140 other lawmakers voted against it.
The bill, which took a week-long debate, was passed and introduced a higher taxes for all taxpayers, as well as stricter penalties for those who try to skip paying them. The bill also contained provisions for a new pension system that will phase out early retirement and make other pension cuts. The Greeks were required to pass the bill in order to qualify for their next €2 billion (USD $2.3 billion) loan installment. The loan installment is part of the country’s third major bailout agreement with eurozone lenders, worth a total of €86 billion euros (USD $98 billion).