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Elections in Bulgaria – Two in one

Publish date: Thursday, 3 November 2011

On the 23th of October 2011 in Bulgaria was held the first round of presidential and local elections. A combination of two types of elections was realized for the first time after the democratic changes in the country.

Elections

This caused quite mixed impressions among citizens and has hindered seriously the activities of local administrations.

In both of the rounds 1 927 candidates for mayors competed for the seats in all 264 municipalities. 7 894 persons competed for mayors of 2 066 mayoralties (settlements with population over 350 inhabitants). More than 42 000 candidates competed for 7 000 positions of municipal councillors in Bulgarian municipalities.

The elections have been marked with relatively high electoral activity: more than 50% voted for local authorities on the two rounds. After the first round 9 mayors out of total of 27 of municipalities - regional centres, were elected, namely Burgas, Dobrich, Montana, Kardjali, Pazardjik, Shumen, Gabrovo, Kjustendil and Sofia. On the first round the municipal councillors in all 264 municipalities have been elected also.

On the second round mayors of the remaining municipalities regional centres were elected.

18 couples of candidates registered for the presidential vote. After the first round the lead couples were of the ruling party GERB (EPP) – with candidate for President Mr. Rossen Plevneliev, former minister of regional development and public works and Mrs. Margarita Popova, candidate for vice-president and former minister of justice. They received 40.05 % from all votes cast. For the runoff they competed with the couple of the Bulgarian socialist party (PES) Mr. Ivailo Kalfin, standing for President and Mr. Stefan Danailov, as standing for vice – president. Mr. Kalfin is at present member of European Parliament; Mr. Stefan Danailov was minister of culture in the former government.

On the 30th of October 2011 (the runoff), 52.56 % of the valid votes went to the couple Plevneliev – Popova who will inaugurate in January next year. The electoral activity for the presidential elections in second round was 48.04% of the eligible citizens.

Four mayors, members of Bulgarian CoR delegation, were re-elected on the first round – Zlatko Jivkov, mayor of Montana municipality from EPP Group, Hasan Azis, mayor of Kardjali municipality from ALDE Group, Detelina Nikolova mayor of Dobrich municipality from EPP Group and Krassimir Kostov mayor of Shumen municipality from PES Group.

On the second round 10 other members of the delegation have been re-elected – Georgi Slavov, mayor of Yambol municipality from EPP Group, Vladimir Moskov, mayor of Gotse Delchev municipality, Krassimir Mirev, mayor of Targovishte municipality, Emil Naidenov, mayor of Gorna Malina municipality, and Ivan Asparuhov, mayor of Mezdra municipality, all from PES Group, Vesselin Lichev, mayor of Sopot municipality and Ahmed Ahmedov, mayor of Tsar Kaloyan municipality, both from ALDE Group, Stanislav Blagov, mayor of Svishtov municipality, Vladimir Kissiov and Malina Edreva councillors in Sofia municipality from EPP Group.

This will change the composition of the delegation.

During the first round in Brussels for president voted around 1,200 Bulgarian citizens, the activity for the runoff being much lower than expected.

Local Intermediate Authorities acting for innovation and energy efficiency

Publish date: Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Like the previous editions, Open Days 2011, titled "Investing in Europe’s future: Regions and cities delivering smart, sustainable and inclusive growth", allowed local and regional authorities to exchange their experiences, practices and opinions.

Open Days 2011

The topics focused on the European policies and strategies that are part of their agendas, and namely the implementation of the Europe 2020 Strategy, that, in this moment, is at the core of the most relevant strategies of regional and local development and to express their earliest opinions and impressions about the EC cohesion regulations.

In this context, the Regional Partnership “Local intermediate authorities: Acting for Europe 2020”, promoted by CEPLI, organized the debate “Unlocking Innovation and Efficiency at Local Level”, that took place on the 12th October. The debate consisted of two panels involving the political representatives of Local Intermediate Authorities (LIAs) from six European Countries: Belgium, Bulgaria, France, Italy, Romania and Spain.

Please see the photos from this event here.

The local events related to the Open Days are to take place in our territories in October, November and December 2011. To learn more about this see: here.

Below you can find the full text of the press release.

Local Intermediate Authorities acting for innovation and energy efficiency

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Local Intermediate Authorities participating in Open Days 2011

The Regional Partnership structured under the aegis of CEPLI “Local intermediate authorities: Acting for Europe 2020”, will organize on 12th of October 2011 an Open Days debate on “Unlocking Innovation and Efficiency at Local Level”.

On this occasion, panellists from Belgium, Bulgaria, France, Italy, Poland, Romania and Spain will discuss how LIAs (Local Intermediate Authorities) are facing the challenges set up by the Strategy Europe 2020.

The first part of the debate, entitled “Digital Europe and Innovation – the role of Local Intermediate Authorities in Europe 2020 strategy” will relate to innovation, digitalization and creativity in European provinces and cities.

The second part, entitled “Energy efficiency at local level for the benefit of Europe 2020 goals” will relate to actions towards energy efficiency and their influence in terms of future perspective of a smart, sustainable and inclusive Europe.

The projects to be outlined during the debate will reveal how the problems were solved at local level in an innovative and efficient way, how the LIAs selected the adequate measures, what were the outcomes, positive results, challenges and lessons learned.

The speakers from these countries will present and discuss best practices for interaction between stakeholders at local level and the influence of innovation and energy efficiency on job creation and social policies.

Pictures from different parts of Europe will show how problems were treated, from the Balkans to Belgium and France and also to the South of Europe, using the EU regional policy funding. Speakers will challenge the debate by trying to find common features to comparable solutions

The debate will tackle questions regarding the management of their local communities in the present economic situation in Europe and scarce financial and energy resources and ever-deepening problems of an ageing population, youth unemployment and public pressure to reduce administrative burden.

The panellists engaging in this debate will be the following:
Mr. Valentín CORTÉS, President of Diputación de Badajoz (ES); Mrs. Guinka Tchavdarova, NAMRB – Executive director (BG); President of Diputación de Cáceres (ES) – name tbc after elections results; Mr. Hervé RASCLARD, First Vice-President of Drôme County Council (FR); Mr. Jean TOUZEAU, Deputy of Gironde County Council (FR); Mr. Georges PIRE, Provincial Deputy of the Province of Liège (BE); Mrs. Hanna Zdanowska, Mayor of the city of Łódź (PL); Mr. Giovanni AVANTI, President of the Province of Palermo (IT); Mr. Piero LACORAZZA, President of the Province of Potenza (IT); Mr. Mircea COSMA, President of Prahova County Council (RO); Mrs. Francesca ZACCARIOTTO, President of the Province of Venezia (IT); Mr. Alain TRUSSART, Provincial Deputy of the Province of Walloon Brabant (BE).

The venue of the event:
Residence Palace (International Press Centre)
Salle Polak
Rue de la Loi 155
1040 Bruxelles
www.presscenter.org

For more information please contact the lead partner of the Regional Partnership:
Liliana MANGEAC
Coordinator
Brussels European Office
National Union of County Councils of Romania
24, Rue Montoyer, B-1000, Brussels
Tel:  + 32 2 231 7141
Fax: + 32 2 231 7003
M:    + 32 479457949
E-mail: liliana.mangeac@uncjr.org
www.uncjr.org

Invitation to the Open Days 2011 debate “Unlocking Innovation and Efficiency at Local Level”

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Political Statutory Conference of the European Confederation of Local Intermediate Authorities (CEPLI)

Publish date: Sunday, 17 July 2011

Press Release - The 4th Political Conference of the European Confederation of Local Intermediate Authorities (CEPLI) took place in Rome, Italy, on June 17th 2011.

Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI
Ratification of the constitution of the CEPLI

Gathering the delegations of 11 national associations of local intermediate authorities and associated networks, this conference marked an important step towards the formal institutionalization of the Confederation.

The political representatives adopted the ASBL statute (document attached) allowing CEPLI to acquire a legal personality and enabling it to act in a more efficient way at European level.

The Political Conference reconfirmed its elected Bureau, namely:

  • the President – Mr. Giuseppe CASTIGLIONE, President of the Province of Catania and President of the Union of Italian Provinces (UPI);
  • the Vice-President – Mr. Paul-Emile MOTTARD, President of the Association of Walloon Provinces, Belgium, representative of the Province of Liege;
  • the Secretary-General – Mr. Claudy LEBRETON, President of the Assembly of French Departments (ADF), President of the Department of Côtes d’Armor; and
  • the Treasurer – Mr. Helmut JAHN, member of the presidency of DLT (Deutscher Landkreistag, Germany), President of Hohenlohekreis.

The statutory part of the Political Conference was followed by a political debate with the following title: “The local intermediate authorities facing the new challenges of the European Union after 2013: the new cohesion policy, the financial perspectives and the institutional reforms in Europe”. This debate allowed the political representatives of CEPLI to exchange views on the role that local intermediate authorities may have and need to have in Europe. In fact, the presence and actions of the closest levels of government to the citizens at European level are even more fundamental in this particular moment, before the publication of the EU budgetary perspectives and the adoption of the new European legislation on cohesion policy.

«Go local» was the motto used not only by the CEPLI members in their interventions, but also by others speakers, including the Director Raoul Prado, representing the EU DG Regio at the Conference.

In fact, to overcome the failure of the Lisbon strategy and reach the ambitious results of the new strategy Europe 2020, there’s the need to restart from the territories, involving the local authorities in the designing and implementation processes of EU policies, in line with the principle of multi-level governance.

The European Provinces want to play a key role in the governance process of the new 2014-2020 planning of the cohesion policy. In this context, CEPLI can be fundamental in building a unitary project at European level, able to ensure a stronger role to the local communities.

The CEPLI members have welcomed the suggestion of Mr. Prado who, in view of a strengthening of the partnership of the Commission with the Provinces of Europe, officially invited CEPLI to join the next round table of the Commission on the future of the cohesion policy that will take place at the end of 2011.

The political debate focused also on the future of the Local Intermediate Authorities in relation with the institutional reforms currently under review in some European member countries, reforms that are questioning the role of Provinces in the institutional architecture of the Member States.

In this context, the participants discussed the proposal presented by CEPLI to the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe, namely a resolution proposal on the role of Provinces in Europe to be approved next year (document attached). This debate will continue during the next months with Mr. Marino Fiasella, President of the Province of La Spezia and Member of the Congress.

Statuts de la CEPLI

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Proposition de résolution

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CEPLI President Giuseppe Castiglione nominated member of ARLEM

GIUSEPPE CASTIGLIONE, President of CEPLI and Union of Italian Provinces, member of the Committee of Regions, has joined the Euro-Mediterranean Regional and Local Assembly (ARLEM).

Giuseppe Castiglione

This appointment marks an important recognition for CEPLI. The participation in the Assembly will make it possible to bring the voice of intermediate local authorities of Confederation into a new forum for discussion, which not only will offer the opportunity to dialogue with all the representatives of the countries of the Mediterranean basin, but also will allow to join the path of construction of the new EU initiative Union for the Mediterranean.

ARLEM is in fact a joint assembly made up of representatives of regions and local authorities of the Member States of the European Union and of 16 Mediterranean partner countries, created in response to the request to put the role of regional and local authorities in the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership on an institutional footing. It therefore gives the partnership a territorial dimension and aims to involve local and regional authorities more closely in the specific projects of the Union for the Mediterranean.

President CASTIGLIONE will attend ARLEM assembly which will be held on 29 January. For the first time since its creation, ARLEM members will meet in plenary session in a country of the southern shore of the Mediterranean, Agadir (Morocco). The meeting will focus primarily on the adoption of three reports prepared in 2010 - the first on local water management, the second on urban development, and the third on the territorial dimension in the Union for the Mediterranean, which will be submitted to UfM and its General Secretariat. To prepare for 2011 deadlines, the ARLEM Bureau adopted a policy declaration last October highlighting its priorities to take forward the process of the Union for the Mediterranean. As a result of the work initiated in the spring and the previous meetings of its Bureau, ARLEM has obtained the status of permanent observer in the UfM.

Press release

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