The government has called for the public to propose the means which would help to reduce corruption in the country. It invites all Lithuanian citizens, social partners and representatives of business and other organizations as well to make proposals to clean up the country. One of the priorities of the 16th government is the fight against corruption, reports ELTA. Recently, the government’s renewed 2011-2014 program in the National Fight against Corruption was approved by the Seimas. As soon as the program is renewed and measures are implemented, the incidence of corruptions is expected to be reduced. Nevertheless, none of the institutions can reduce the level of corruption without society’s understanding and support. There is a need to unify efforts and to create an atmosphere of intolerance to corruption.
Since Jan. 1 it is prohibited to smoke at Vilnius’ public transport stops, reports ELTA. Vilnius City Municipality supported the proposal, which was raised by bus and trolleybus passengers in social networks. Since Jan. 1 it is also prohibited to smoke in Vincas Kudirka Square and the Bernardine Garden. The latter proposal was raised by the Vilnius Municipality Council members’ group For Cultured Vilnius, which is led by Zydrunas Savickas. Vilnius residents or guests of the city who ignore the ban face a warning or fine ranging from 20 - 50 litas (6 – 15 euros). Vilnius’ government plans to establish more non-smoking zones in the future.
According to waste-processing and contracting authority VSA Vilnius, in 2013 the residents of Vilnius city recycled 15 percent more waste than they did last year, reports ELTA. “Last year, we collected record amounts of garbage - more than 1.3 million kilograms. The residents of apartment blocks in Lithuania’s capital recycled 12 percent more waste. The residents of private houses also contributed to the growth of recycled waste,” said representative of VSA Vilnius Martynas Surplys. According to Surplys, the responsibility and understanding of the necessity to recycle encouraged residents to participate.
Minister of the Economy Evaldas Gustas has allocated 22.5 million litas (6.5 million euros) from the European Union Structural Funds for the establishment of three art incubators, reports ELTA. These will be in Alytus, Utena and Kaunas. The goal is to create favorable conditions for artists to operate, to introduce their work and develop businesses related to art. Funds for the incubators will be used for items including renovation of buildings, creating recording studios and exhibition halls. New modern equipment will be bought, to be rented to artists under preferential prices. Other services will also be offered, such as creation of business plans and assistance in implementing them, training, event organizing and the presentation of work. It is hoped to reduce unemployment, encourage entrepreneurship and provide closer cooperation between business and art. Currently other incubator projects are underway in Vilnius, Raudondvaris, Anyksciai, Klaipeda, Siauliai and Telsiai. A total of 76 million litas will be distributed.