Local assemblies 2018-07-18T14:04:37+00:00

LOCAL ASSEMBLIES

Without the active involvement of the local assembly in anti-corruption, the strength of integrity management at the local government level would always be undermined.

The local assembly is a critical part of local government, exercising important functions (strategic planning, law-making, policy development, representation, oversight and advocacy). Its potential as a strong anticorruption actor is outstanding as it can meaningfully and from the top affect development, enforcement and monitoring of integrity policies, regulations and procedures.

Apart from that, because of its vast competence and powers, it is exposed to serious integrity risks, that need to be adequately managed. Therefore, actively involving local assembly in the process of integrity management is a necessary precondition for effective prevention of corruption.

Its participation in integrity projects would send a strong message to local community regarding the true determination to fight corruption and uphold integrity on local government level.

RISK MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES

  • Promote the idea that the municipal assembly adopts/ commits to a Codes of Ethics for councillors. This Code should codify guidance on key integrity pillars, such as conflicts of interest, self-dealing, bribery, gift taking, inappropriate actions, complaint handling, etc. and should have particular relevance to councillors.

  • Include the local assembly into the scope of the corruption risk assessment, as appropriate. Focus on its key strategic and oversight functions, ensure cooperation of the relevant committees in the process.

  • Promote the idea that the local assembly establishes ethics and compliance measures for preventing corruption. Provide councillors with access to available good practices, such as ISO 37001:2015 Anti-bribery management systems. Requirements.

  • Encourage participation of councillors in the implementation of the Integrity Plan (i.e. campaigns, awareness events, etc), using pro-actively the potential of such involvement to attract high-level political attention and raise awareness.

  • Promote the idea that the local assembly should allocate respective responsibilities for the integrity compliance function (i.e. nominate Integrity Contact Point, Integrity Officer, and/ or Integrity Committee). The latter should exercise counselling, oversee adherence to rules and ethical commitments, coordinate with the local administration implementation of integrity measures, act as a resource regarding integrity matters in the local assembly.

  • Adopt clear standards on transparency and accountability regarding the whole spectrum of functions of the local assembly (i.e. publication of draft policies, legal acts, strategic plans, budget plans, urban plans, etc; open sessions of the local assembly, public hearings; reporting on implementation, etc). Deploy innovative and modern ICT technologies to implement “open data” projects.

  • Further to the existing regulations and lead international standards, adopt a straightforward policy on lobbying to ensure a level playing field for all actors to participate in the decision making and regulatory process on equal footing, as well as to effectively prevent from conflicts of interest.

  • Provide councillors with access to trainings and awareness events in the field of integrity, organized or supported by the local government.

  • Systematically include local assembly in the internal and external communication regarding integrity. Encourage participation of local councillors in joint projects with CSOs, media, or businesses in the area of integrity.

  • Encourage the local assembly to provide secure and accessible channels to raise concerns and safely report integrity violations.

  • Encourage the local assembly to undertake periodic reviews of the ethics and compliance programmes, as well as of the implementation of integrity measures.

GUIDE TO CORRUPTION-FREE LOCAL GOVERNMENT