China's National Health and Family Planning Commission has urged authorities in seven provincial-level regions to release data on birth control fines after they failed to respond to requests.


Family planning fines, or "social compensation fees," are paid to local family planning departments by parents who violate China's one-child policy. Fines can amount to tens of thousands of yuan for each extra child.


Suspecting some departments of misconduct in the management of such funds, a lawyer filed a petition for 31 provincial-level regions on the Chinese mainland to reveal the total amount of fines each received last year. Authorities in 19 regions failed to provide data.


Friday's announcement was made after the same lawyer appealed to the commission to launch an administrative reconsideration procedure on how to deal with the 19 regions.


The seven regions under pressure to release information on birth control fines include the provinces of Liaoning, Anhui, Jiangxi, Shandong, Hainan and Gansu as well as Chongqing municipality.


The commission said another seven provincial-level regions have already responded and cases concerning the remaining five are still being dealt with.


In September, the National Audit Office released its auditing results on fines collected in 45 counties and cities in nine provincial-level regions from the beginning of 2009 to May 2012.


The office revealed various problems in the handling of fines, including inaccurate reports relating to the number of extra children parents had, fees not successfully collected and local officials handing out higher fines than what they should have.


According to the commission, administrative reconsideration is a key channel to solve administrative disputes, correct mistakes of government departments and protect citizens' legal interests.




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