Madrid roundtable discusses local governance

Participants discuss issues facing local government at Madrid round table January 26th

Spanish government officials, Parliamentarians and academics gathered recently to discuss contemporary issues concerning local government in the context of the decentralized structure of Spain. The roundtable, part of the Global Dialogue on Federalism, considered topics such as the organization of local governments in the framework of the ‘Statutes of Autonomy’, the efficiency of state and regional controls over local governments, and the financial resources and taxation powers of local governments.

The roundtable was held January 26 at the Instituto de Derocho Local – the Local Law Institute – of the Universidad Autónoma of Madrid. It was organized by Dr. Francisco Velasco Caballero, professor of the Universidad Autónoma and Director of the Instituto de Derocho Local. Partners of the Forum of Federations for the organization of the roundtable were: Town Council of Madrid; Town Council of Barcelona; ‘Fundación Democracia y Gobierno Local’; and Institut d´Estudis Autonà²mics de Cataluña.

Participants in the round table were: Carles Viver Pi-Sunyer (Institut d´Estudis Autonà²mics); Enrique Orduña (Ministerio de Administraciones Públicas); Manuel Zafra Víctor (Ministerio de Administraciones Públicas); Elisenda Malaret (Representative in the spanish Parlament, Socialist Party); Juan Arrieta (University of Castilla-La Mancha); Cayetano Prieto (Town Council of Madrid); Ramiro Fuente (Press-agency EFE); Alfonso Yerga (‘Centro de Estudios Andaluces’); F. Xavier Casas (Town council of Barcelona); Tomás Font (University of Barcelona); Silvia Díez Sastre (Local law Institute); Gonzalo Brun (Spanish federation of cities and provinces: FEMP); José Manuel Rodríguez Ã?lvarez (Ministerio de Administraciones Públicas); Carmen Pascual (Popular Party), Juan María Vázquez (Province of Badajoz); Juan Bravo (Town Council of Madrid) and Francisco Velasco (Local Law Institute).

Other Global Dialogue roundtables on the same theme will be held in Cape Town, South Africa and in Sydney, Australia, on Feb. 9. Two more are planned for Austria and Mexico.

Other roundtables were held in 2006 in London, Canada; Jos, Nigeria; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; New Delhi, India; Bern, Switzerland; and in Chicago, US . Later in 2007, an international roundtable will be held, followed by the publication of a book. The local government theme is the Forum’s sixth in the Global Dialogue series.

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