D O C U M E N T S
According to sources familiar with the negotiations, the following is the mutually accepted English text of the property restitution/compensation law passed by the Lithuanian Parliament on 21 June 2011, subsequently signed by the president, and coming into effect today, 1 December 2011. It is also available on the website of the Lithuanian parliament, in Lithuanian and in English (a Word doc version is also provided). [Update of 2012:Nina Bruskina’s paper in Lithuanian; in the event of future URL changes, the law can be searched via “Lietuvos Respublikos geros valios kompensacijos už žydų religinių bendruomenių nekilnojamąjį turtą įstatymas. Valstybės žinios, 2011, nr. 803897”.
LAW TEXT (translation)
Draft -XIP -968(4)
LAW OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
ON THE GOOD WILL COMPENSATION FOR THE IMMOVABLE PROPERTY OF JEWISH RELIGIOUS COMMUNITIES
The Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania,
Recognizing large contribution by the Lithuanian Jewish community to the Lithuanian culture, and progress of the society before the Second World War, Lithuania’s occupation, and holocaust as the beginning of the overall annihilation of the existence of Jews;
Taking into account the fact that Jewish religious communities, which existed historically in different Lithuanian locations, were exterminated during the holocaust, therefore, in the absence of heirs of the rights, the restitution of their property is not possible, taking into account other valid legislation of the Republic of Lithuania,
In order to restore historical justice and to compensate by good will for the immovable property of Lithuanian Jewish religious communities, illegally expropriated by the totalitarian regimes during the occupation period,
In order for the compensation to contribute to preservation of the cultural heritage of the Lithuanian Jewish community in Lithuania, and satisfaction of its current needs,
Taking into account the provisions of Terezin declaration, adopted by 46 countries, including Lithuania, in 2009;
Shall pass the following law on the Good Will Compensation for the Immovable Property of Jewish Religious Communities.
Article 1. Purpose of the Law
1. The Law shall provide for the size, payment time frames, procedure and the purpose of use of the compensation for the immovable property of the Lithuanian Jewish Religious Communities.
2. For the purposes of payment of the compensation provided for in this Law, immovable property of Jewish religious communities shall be considered to be the remaining immovable property of Jewish religious communities, which was expropriated illegally by the totalitarian regimes during the occupation period, with the exception of the land.
3. This law does not affect restitution of property rights to the remaining immovable property in accordance with the Law on the Procedure for the Restitution of Rights of Religious Communities to the Remaining Immovable Property.
Article 2. The Size, Payment Time Frames, and Procedure of the Compensation
1. The amount of the payable monetary compensation is 128 million litas.
2. The compensation shall be paid from the State budget of the Republic of Lithuania to the Foundation assigned by the Government of the Republic of Lithuania for the purpose of disposal of compensations. The Foundation shall be a non-profit public legal entity of limited civil liability, which is established according to this law, and the Law on Public Establishments. The main goals of activities of the foundation shall be the following: to satisfy public interests by means of implementing activities in the areas of education, teaching, religion, science, culture, health care, and other publicly beneficial areas.
3. The collegiate management body of the Foundation specified in paragraph 2 of this article shall represent the Jewish Community of Lithuania, Lithuanian Jewish Religious Community, and other organizations and institutions promoting Jewish religion, health care, culture, and education in Lithuania, if they express such a wish.
4. The compensation amount, provided for in paragraph 1, shall be final, claims may not be raised, and the established compensation amount for the property of Jewish religious communities and Jewish communities may not be changed in the future.
5. The statutes of the Foundation shall provide for clear procedure for the use of the compensation funds, and Government audit, and annual financial reporting to the Government and the Seimas.
6. In case the audit report states that the Foundation has used the compensation funds not in accordance with the aims specified in Article 3 of the Law, the Government shall have the right to temporally stop payment of the compensation and use of it, and to make a decision on the assignment of another Foundation.
7. Compensation for the immovable property of Lithuanian religious Jewish communities may be provided by the decision of the Government of the Republic of Lithuania to transfer property rights of State-owned property – buildings or parts of them – to the ownership of the Foundation, specified in paragraph 2, if it makes a decision to ask to transfer such property for a specific purpose, complying with the condition set forth in paragraph 2 of Article 3. In such a way, the size of the monetary compensation, provided for in paragraph 1 of this article, shall be reduced by the value of the transferable immovable property, calculated in accordance with the mass evaluation data of the Public Entity ‘Center of Registers’ on the day of the property transfer.
8. With the exception of the amount provided for in paragraph 9 of this Article, payment of the monetary compensation in accordance with this Law shall begin on January 1, 2013 and end on March 1, 2023. The monetary compensation shall be paid out by installments, and shall be approved in the annual State budget, taking into account financial possibilities of the State, and shall be paid by March 1stof every year.
9. For the purpose specified in point 2, paragraph 1 of Article 3, a lump sum of 3 million litas shall be allocated. This amount is a portion of the monetary compensation specified in paragraph 1 of the Law. It shall be paid to the Foundation, specified in Paragraph 2, in 2012, not later than within three months after the assignment of the Foundation.
10. In accordance with paragraph 7 of this Article, State-owned property may be transferred to the Foundation, specified in paragraph 2, starting from January 1, 2012.
Article 3. Purpose of the Use of the Compensation
1. Monetary compensation, paid out in accordance with this Law, may be used only for the following purposes:
1) Religious, cultural, health care, sports, educational, and scientific purposes of Lithuanian Jews in Lithuania. When disposing the funds allocated for the purpose, the Foundation shall fund targeted projects in the above mentioned areas;
2) To support persons of Jewish nationality who resided in Lithuania during the Second World War and suffered from occupation of totalitarian regimes during this period. Amount of the compensation specified in paragraph 9 of Article 2 shall be allocated for the purpose.
2. Immovable property transferred in accordance with this Law shall be used only for religious, cultural, educational and scientific purposes of Lithuanian Jews.
Article 4. Enforcement and Implementation of the Law
1. This Law shall come into force on December 1, 2011.
2. The Government of the Republic of Lithuania or its authorized institution shall adopt legal acts implementing the Law by December 1, 2011.
I promulgate this law passed by the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania.
PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA