The Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania (SACL) has decided to file a petition with the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania for an investigation into the compliance of some provisions of the decision of the Government of the Republic of Lithuania, concerning the procedure for the allocation of budget funds for research, experimental development and artistic activities carried out by universities and research institutes, with the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania.
In the proceeding concerned, the SACL was examining the legitimacy of the orders of the Minister of Education and Science, which set forth the annual formal evaluations of research and experimental development and artistic activities of universities and institutes, as well as comparative expert assessments of research and experimental development activities of universities and institutes every five years. These regulatory administrative acts were adopted in the context of implementing inter alia the afore-mentioned decision of the Government.
While hearing this case the SACL has stated that the provisions of the decision of the Government and the provisions of the Guidance approved by it, imperatively oblige the Minister of Education and Science to adopt new criteria for the evaluation of research and experimental development and artistic activities by means of normative administrative acts, which would be applied when evaluating the activities of universities and research institutes prior to the adoption of these normative administrative acts. This may breach the legitimate expectations of universities and research institutes to evaluate their activities in accordance with then-existing rules. Therefore, the SACL found that there were grounds to doubt whether the act of the Government and the Guidance approved by it are compatible with the constitutional principle of the nonretroactivity of legal acts (lex retro non agit).
Administrative case No. I-9-502/2019