Tirana, February 7, 2014/Balkan Independent News Agency
In the first meeting of the parliamentary committee for the territorial reform, the speaker of parliament, Ilir Meta invited the opposition to be part of this process in order for it to be more transparent.
He said that parties in this committee have equal rights in spite of their representation in parliament.
In his speech, Meta considered the reform as an extraordinary necessity, adding that this reform is long overdue, as the last administrative-territorial division has taken place in 1992 and added that demographic changes in these two decades have been massive.
“There’s an extraordinary fragmentation in municipalities and communes, which has led to the failure of more than half of these local government divisions. Then we have the lack of human capacities and mismanagement of many material resources.
I’d like to stress the will of the majority in parliament to carry out this reform along with the opposition which in the past, it has been in favor of this reform, although it didn’t have the necessary votes for it. Today’s majority has the necessary votes and demands the cooperation of the opposition, because it needs its opinion and because this process is in the best interest of everyone.
The state budget will save at least 80 million USD from this reform, without taking into account long term policies”, said Meta.
On his part, the joint socialist chairman of the committee, Bashkim Fino declared that the majority part of current communes do not generate any incomes for the state budget and they do not even collect taxes.
Underlining the importance of this reform, Fino invited the opposition to value the importance of this issue in order to make this a successful reform. /ibna/