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  • Despite some 5,000 amendments proposed by Sen. Roberto Calderoli of the Northern League, on Feb. 10 the Italian Senate began the voting process on the government's highly controversial bill that would recognize civil unions for gay couples. As tough back room negotiations among governing partners and the opposition continue, the final vote is due by Feb. 23.
  • Italian economists and business leaders are finally beginning to look on the bright side. During the first quarter this year the GNP surged upward by 0.3%, the same as Germany’s. The news gave the stock market a pleasant jolt. Most importantly, a report May 13 by the national statistics-gathering agency ISTAT, says that Italy has finally emerged from recession.
  • During the vote on Premier Matteo Renzi’s controversial election reform bill nicknamed the “Italicum,” the leftist MPs from Nichi Vendola’s Sinistra Ecologica Liberta’ party wore black mourning bands. But the Renzi bill sailed through the Chamber of Deputies with a comfortable margin, leaving Italy itself more victor than funeral parlor. “Not everyone is on board, but the ship is sailing forward,” said an obviously relieved Renzi.
  • Italy has radically simplified divorce proceedings. From three years of separation before a fractured couple could face a judge, the Chamber of Deputies this week dropped the waiting period to just six months if consensual and one year if not. The vote was overwhelmingly in favor, 398 ayes versus only 28 nays.
  • Former President Giorgio Napolitano left office definitively Jan. 14, returning to his home in Rome’s colorful, ancient Monti quarter, a stone’s throw from Trajan’s Forum. His departure after nine turbulent years in office was moving to watch as, in the great courtyard of the Quirinal Palace, he received the formal farewell salute of a horseback brigade in full regalia. Now, with that ritual behind, the less elegant horse trading to elect a successor begins in earnest. Two years ago Napolitano agreed to succeed himself only to break a long political stalemate. The question is whether that stalemate will be repeated, without a Giorgio Napolitano to smooth over a difficult transition
  • In a turbulent session late Wednesday Premier Matteo Renzi’s labor reform bill known as the “Jobs Act” was passed in the Senate. Accompanying that passage was a successful confidence vote, 165-111, for his harried government. Although Jobs Act ratification is yet to come in the Chamber of Deputies, EU leaders were already congratulating Renzi for the success of the bill, whose aim is to introduce flexibility into the Italian labor market.
  • Facts & Stories
    N. L.(September 26, 2014)
    Despite his pressing calendar, Italy's PM Matteo Renzi found the time to address the Italian community at a presentation held at the Consulate General of Italy that followed a private meeting with New York City's mayor Bill DeBlasio. Introduced by Consul General Natalia Quintavalle, who was accompanied by the Governor of the State of New York, Andrew Cuomo, the premier touched several hot topics in a speech directed specifically to the community.
  • A united Europe is an irreversible process.Perhaps what we call the European message is best summed up in the expression “the United States of Europe,” which may also be easier to understand for people on this side of the Atlantic, including many of Italian origin, who are proud to be citizens of the United States of America.