Committee on Public Administration and Regional Development
About the Committee
The Committee on Public Administration and Regional Development has been established since 1992. The legislative assemblies of the socialist regime had no such committee; considering the political system at that time, the Committee was probably closest in its agenda to the Committee on National Committees and Nationalities. Neither did a committee of a similar name exist in the Parliaments of the First Republic.
In the 1990s, the Committee discussed the reform of the municipal administration system, the establishment of regional systems, the transfer of competencies from districts to municipalities, and other significant reform measures.
Until 2006, the agenda of the Committee for Public Administration and Regional Development included also environmental issues, which have now been transferred to the competence of a separate committee. The competence focus of the Committee on Public Administration and Regional Development is very wide. The bills discussed by the Committee usually fall under the agenda of the Ministry of the Interior (with the exception of internal security), the Ministry for Regional Development, and formerly the Ministry for Information Technologies as well, which are also the Committee’s key partners within the executive sphere, and the Ministry of Finance.
The Committee discusses bills between the fi rst and second readings. The discussion of an act in the Committee is introduced by the relevant Ministers. In the last electoral period, the Committee has discussed i.a. amendments to key acts on public administration or the regional system, including the amendment to the Building Act, the Local Referendum Act, the Cadastral Act, the Travel Document Act, the Municipal Act, the Concession Act, the Public Procurement Act, the Act on Regional Council Elections, and the Act on the Budgetary Determination of Taxation.
The discussion of a bill is completed by the Committee’s resolution, recommending or not recommending the approval of the bill to the Chamber of Deputies. A part of the Committee’s members (at least one-fifth of all the members) may prepare an opposing report to the bill being discussed.
Monitoring the Government
Every Committee is entitled to summon a member of the Government, or the head of another central administrative authority, and request information and explanation from him/her. Government monitoring by the Committee on Public Administration and Regional Development includes especially addressing conceptual documents; the Committee further participates in discussing the relevant chapters of the state budget and the final state budgetary account, including an important chapter on regional budgets, which distributes funds to regions and municipalities. Every year, the Committee discusses for example the budget of the State Fund for Housing Development or of the Ministry for Regional Development, whose activities – including the distribution of funds from EU sources – it continuously monitors.
Foreign Relations, European Agenda and Other Activities
The Committee maintains foreign contacts with partner committees in other European as well as non-European parliaments. The Committee organises or co-organises seminars on current issues.
Committee meetings are convened and conducted by the Chairperson, who is obliged to convene a meeting upon the decision of the Chamber of Deputies, or upon a request of at least two-fifths of all the members of the Committee. The meeting’s agenda is proposed by the Chairperson and approved by the Committee. If a member of the Committee requests that an additional item be added to the agenda, it must be approved by three-fifths of all the members of the Committee. The Committee’s meetings are essentially open to the public, but it may be proposed that a meeting be declared closed to the public. The Committee has a quorum if at least one-third of all its members are present; for resolutions to be valid, they must be adopted with the consent of an absolute majority of the members present.