State Council (Austria)

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The Council of State was at times the cabinet of the Austrian monarch in the Habsburg monarchy . Later, this term was used to describe government or legislative bodies in Austria as state institutions in various forms.

State Councilor with Maria Theresa

In 1760 a Council of State was first established under Maria Theresa . He was the supreme advisory body of the monarch for the entire area of ​​the Habsburg monarchy. It consisted of three ministers of state, including the state chancellor , and three other nobles. The Council of State also existed under Maria Theresa's successors, from 1804 Emperor of Austria until 1848, when it was replaced in Cisleithanien by the Imperial and Royal Government.

Reichsrat / Staatsrat 1848–1868

The Kremsier draft constitution of 1848 and the October constitution of 1849 envisaged the Reichsrat as a new advisory body, the emperor's cabinet ; it was established in 1851 and existed in this form until the February patent in 1861. The "younger" Council of State re-established in the same year (from 1867 Reichsrat was the name for the parliament of the kingdoms and countries represented in the Reichsrat ) was repealed in 1868 ( December constitution 1867) without replacement . Its role was taken over by the Ministry , the Council of Ministers for Common Affairs of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy .

German Austria 1918/19

State Council as a government and executive power

In the last days of the First World War , a Council of State was installed in German Austria on October 30, 1918 as the governing and executive power of the Provisional National Assembly . The collegial body consisted of Franz Dinghofer , Johann Nepomuk Hauser (he had replaced Jodok Fink , who had resigned as President on the same day ) and Karl Seitz , the three presidents of the National Assembly with equal rights, who represented the three leading political parties , and 20 others from the National Assembly elected members.

As a state notary, one member had to certify the copies of the State Council. However, it only had to certify the proper execution of the respective state act, not to provide a countersignature that could be refused for political reasons.

The three Presidents of the National Assembly, the Head of the Chancellery ( State Chancellor Karl Renner ) and the State Notary made up the Executive Directorate of the State Council .

On October 30, 1918, the State Council elected the Renner I state government . On November 12, 1918, he provisionally assumed all of the emperor's functions under constitutional law. On March 3, 1919, after its resignation, he entrusted the state government with the continuation of the business until the election of the Renner II state government by the Constituent National Assembly on March 15, 1919. a. the first President of the Constitutional Court , newly established on January 25, 1919 , Paul Vittorelli , and the first President of the German-Austrian Administrative Court , newly created on February 6, 1919 , Karl Grabmayr .

State government

The State Council exercised its executive powers through agents who together formed the state government, carried the title of State Secretary and were coordinated by the State Chancellor. They headed the state offices (= ministries), often in direct succession to ministries of the monarchy. The State Office of Foreign Affairs had z. B. to take over the agendas of the Austro-Hungarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (the first State Secretary was Victor Adler , who died on November 11, 1918 ), the State Office for Army the agendas of the Austro-Hungarian Ministry of War and the Imperial and Royal Defense Ministry , the State Office for Transport the agendas of the Imperial and Royal Railway Ministry (see state government Renner I ).

Undersecretaries could be assigned to the state secretaries (= ministers) as political assistants.

End of the State Council

With the entry into force of the State Government Act of March 14, 1919, the State Council and State Council Directorate were abolished on March 15, 1919, as was the state notary. The functions of the head of state passed to the President of the Constituent National Assembly , Karl Seitz , until December 9, 1920 . The other functions of the State Council were taken over by the state government or by the newly established, permanent main committee of the National Assembly.

On December 9, 1920, the functions of Head of State were taken over by the first Federal President of Austria, Michael Hainisch , who was elected by the Federal Assembly ( National Council and Federal Council ) on October 1, 1920 on the basis of the Federal Constitutional Act passed by the National Assembly .

Corporate state

During the dictatorial corporate state” , 1934–1938, 40 to 50 people, who were appointed by the Federal President , formed the State Council based on the May Constitution of 1934, whose task was the formal preparation of laws.


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Imperial patent, with which the dissolution of the permanent and strengthened Reichsrath is ordered, the appointment of the State Council is arranged and the statute for the latter is announced. No. 22/1861 (EReader, ALEX Online ).
  2. § 3 Resolution of the Provisional National Assembly for German Austria on the basic institutions of state power
  3. ^ Isabella Ackerl , Rudolf Neck , Austria, November 1918: the emergence of the First Republic. Protocol of the symposium in Vienna on October 24 and 25, 1978 (= Publications / Scientific Commission for Research into the History of the Republic of Austria; Vol. 9), Oldenbourg, Munich 1986, p. 210 ff., Here p. 212 .
  4. Art. 3 Law of November 12, 1918 on the State and Government Form of German Austria, StGBl. No. 5/1918 (= p. 4)
  5. StGBl. No. 180/1919 (= p. 407)