Esther Happacher - University of Innsbruck, Institut für Italienisches Recht

Maria Bertel - University of Innsbruck, Institut für Öffentliches Recht, Staats- und Verwaltungslehre

Name of the act/s*

Bundesgesetz, mit dem das Epidemiegesetz 1950, das Tuberkulosegesetz und das COVID-19-Maßnahmengesetz geändert werden

Subject area

Covid-19; free movement of individuals

Brief description of the contents of the act

The Federal law creates the legal basis for the Corona «Traffic light» system permitting a regional assessment of the epidemiological situation to avoid a nationwide lockdown and for the regulations restricting movements of people due to measures against the Coronavirus. Latter rules were necessary due to a ruling by the Constitutional Court in July 2020 declaring the existing regulations inconstitutional for lack of an appropriate legal basis. The law introduces a binding consultation by the Federal Government of the Hauptausschuss of the National Council on said regulations. Furthermore, their duration can not exceed 4 weeks in the case of prohibitions of entry into a certain area and 10 days if they regard the leaving of a private living area. In general,  the duration of the COVID-19-Maßnahmengesetz is extended by one year until the end of 2021.

*Act citation /year and number

BGBl I Nr. 104/2020

Enacted by

Federation

Official link to the text of the act

https://www.ris.bka.gv.at/eli/bgbl/I/2020/104/20200925

Name of the act/s*

Bundesgesetz, mit dem das Polizeiliche Staatsschutzgesetz geändert wird

Subject area

Domestic intelligence

Brief description of the contents of the act

The Federal law introduces an obligatory education for people working for the domestic intelligence service (Bundesamt für Verfassungschutz und Terrorismusbekämpfung) and a thrusworthiness check for all persons working in the domestic intelligence sector.

*Act citation /year and number

BGBl. I Nr. 102/2020

Enacted by

Federation

Official link to the text of the act

https://www.ris.bka.gv.at/eli/bgbl/I/2020/102/20200916

Name of the act/s*

Bundesgesetz, mit dem das Bundesgesetz über hochschulrechtliche und studienförderungsrechtliche Sondervorschriften an Universitäten, Pädagogischen Hochschulen, Einrichtungen zur Durchführung von Fachhochschul-Studiengängen und Fachhochschulen aufgrund von COVID-19 (COVID-19-Hochschulgesetz – C-HG) geändert wird

Subject area

Covid-19

Brief description of the contents of the act

The Federal law introduces among others the possibility to extend fixed-term employment contracts at Universities up to a maximum of 12 months if projects, publications and the like have been delayed due to Covid-19, this will be possible until September 30th, 2021.

*Act citation /year and number

BGBl. I Nr. 79/2020

Enacted by

Federation

Official link to the text of the act

https://www.ris.bka.gv.at/eli/bgbl/I/2020/79/20200724

Name of the act/s*

Bundesgesetz, mit dem das Einkommensteuergesetz 1988, das Umsatzsteuergesetz 1994 und das Schaumweinsteuergesetz 1995 geändert werden (19. COVID-19-Gesetz)

Subject area

Covid-19

Brief description of the contents of the act

The Federal law contains a bundle of measures aiming at sustaining the tourism sector by introducing a 75% tax-deductibility of business lunches and by reducing the VAT on non-alcoholic beverages at 10%.

*Act citation /year and number

BGBl. I Nr. 48/2020

Enacted by

Federation

Official link to the text of the act

https://www.ris.bka.gv.at/eli/bgbl/I/2020/48/20200617

Name of the act/s*

Administrative High Court 28th February 2020; Ra 2018/01/0159 (EU 2020/0001) of 13th February 2020, C-118/20 (Preliminary reference)

Subject area

Citizenship law

Brief description of the contents of the act

 A national of the Republic of Estonia applied for the Austrian Citizenship. The Government of Lower Austria ensured to grant her the Austrian citizenship in case she could prove within two years that she had given up the Estonian citizenship. The originally Estonian applicant gave up her Estonian citizenship and is since then stateless and no longer a citizen of the EU.

In the meanwhile, the applicant had moved to Vienna and the competent government of Vienna revoked the assurance of Lower Austria and rejected the application to become an Austrian citizen. The decision was based on the fact, that the applicant had committed two serious administrative offenses since the application and was therefore not fulfilling the prerequisites for Austrian citizenship (laid down in the Austrian Citizenship Act [StBG]) anymore. The applicant filed a complaint at the Vienna Administrative Court, which was rejected.

The Administrative High Court, the applicant then appealed to, decided to refer (amongst others) the following question to the ECJ: Does the situation of a person who has renounced the nationality of a member state of the EU and thus the citizenship of the EU to acquire the nationality of another member state and whose possibility of recovering citizenship of the Union is removed as a consequence fall within the scope of EU law, so EU law must be observed when revoking the assurance of granting the citizenship?

Comment

The Vienna Administrative Court found, that the case was not falling into the scope of EU law, because the applicant had already renounced the Estonian citizenship (and therefore her EU citizenship). Since the Vienna Administrative Court had carried out a proportionality analysis based on Austrian law and not on EU law, the Administrative High Court asked the ECJ whether the case fell into the scope of EU law (to find out whether a proportionality analysis based on EU law as well was necessary in the concrete case).

*Act citation /year and number

Administrative High Court 28th February 2020; Ra 2018/01/0159 (EU 2020/0001) of 13th February 2020, C-118/20

Enacted by

Administrative High Court

Official link to the text of the act

https://www.vwgh.gv.at/rechtsprechung/vorabentscheidungsantraege_an_den_eugh/ra_2018010159.pdf?7qkupl

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