Honorary President of IPPM, Prof. dr. Dr. Arben Malaj, on the finances of local government.



From today’s conference on local government finances, some reflections on local government challenges (Draft Article). Mayors of citizens for the citizens, no longer mayors of party leaders. Today, local-level democracy is heavily compromised because mayors in 61 municipalities are mostly non-mayors, but mayors of their party chairmen. They have more political and economic power today, but also more pressure and misuse.

1. Reducing the democratic deficit imposes the decentralization of some vital functions and services. The autonomy of municipalities and their public finances are not an end in themselves but need to consolidate democracy by serving their citizens better through the quality of public functions and services in their daily lives where the first municipalities are.

2. Local government in some municipalities is mainly based on penalties and penalties rather than increased equality of opportunity especially in employment or in doing honest business.

3. It’s thrown into the computer, you have to pay it is the arrogant response when citizens complain about administrative measures and unfair fines.

4. Citizens did not vote for “computers” but for politicians. Computers process data, accuracy, and processing, employees are responsible.

5. The blocking amount shall not be greater than the amount of the obligation and the penalty. The first complaint must be administratively online, reply within a few hours and then open the account blocking path. A citizen is reported online for blocking bank accounts and not knowing in the middle of a business cycle. This is the A of responsible governance.

6. Today, local government does not correct the deformities of central governments but is simply a burden and a burden of bad governance for citizens.

7. The mayors in the conditions of the revenue collapse are competing among themselves to “invent fees, taxes and penalties that are unduly burdened by citizens.

8. The fee for the schools of the Municipality of Tirana is not constitutional and should be canceled immediately, even the constitutionally obtained amount so far, should be recognized as prepaid obligations by the residents and taxpayers of Tirana and deducted from the local tax payments of the years upcoming.

9. Tirana deserves to have the best education logistics, it must eliminate the overcrowded classes or poor physical conditions of kindergartens, health centers but the Municipality of Tirana should do this by applying the basic principle in any democratic state that investments for education and health are financed through general taxation.

10. Tirana Municipality, instead of overcharging and improperly taxing citizens unconstitutional, should use the authority of 34 Deputy of Tirana since the state budget has been approved to establish a special budget item within the Ministry of Education’s budget to the extent of the obligation annual PPP-s. PPP-s need to be identified, projected and implemented through free competition, maximum transparency and strict implementation of the principles of public investment selection at the local and central level.

11. Mayors could have imposed on the government that the 2 billion-euro package for Public-Private-Partnership would not be simple or predominantly for the streets, but to start with the vital elements where their citizens are suffering and deserve to rely better on investment public in the critical elements of their daily lives.

12. Many municipalities suffer today from the burden of debt inherited from private businesses, the government as it raised public debt limits from 60% to 72% of GDP which it should have “bought” through medium-term and long-term instruments public debt and box office where due to inherited debts they have significantly reduced the quality of the public functions and services they offer to their citizens.

13. Many municipalities have not only billions of ALL outstanding liabilities, but have created and keeps unseen / hidden even larger amounts, since by doing so they have high electoral benefits.

14. “Creditors / Borrowers” who are not paid only if they have gained illegally, not with real competition, can expect to receive this money when the mayors, as well as real chairpersons of tenders or PPP-s will have the opportunity.

15. Mayors have the electoral interest to increase their debt chains and pay them later. That is because these debtors part of a long waiting list can easily become “electoral soldiers” of the mayors who have been indebted.

16. The forms of engagement of the electoral soldiers of the “debtors on the waiting list” start from their influence on employees and relatives, fearing that another may follow the legal path for a longer waiting time.

17. In the face of these not only potential risks of “waiting list debtors” electoral soldiers are ready to provide not only the “life” for debtors to be re-elected at any price. This undermines and affect the democracy.

18. Legal bankruptcy of municipalities make clear legal and political responsibilities. Voters deserve transparency for those responsible for the deterioration of quality and the lack of public functions and services.

19. Bankruptcy of municipalities may have positive effects on the democratization of local government for not creating the positive spill-over effect across the country.




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