What are the “Other Participatory Forms” (mechanisms) according to Georgian Law (OPF)?

The Other forms of Participation  under the Law of Georgia, on local self-government 

An active citizen can be involved in the decision-making process in a variety of ways. Thought the final decision is made by the authorities, citizens provide the state or local institutions with opinions, alternatives and directions through dialogue, i.e. they influence on the final decision.

The Local Self-Government Code (Article 85) offers citizens various forms of public involvement. these are:

a) A general Assembly of a settlement– Represents a  discussion by the local population  on  the  important social and economic issues and preparation  of the relevant proposals for submission to the municipal authorities;

b.) Petition-is a draft of normative administrative-legal act. It can be submitted by the population registered on the territory of the municipality. C). The Civil Advisory Council  – is a deliberative body of the Mayor of a municipality/Gamgebeli of a district, composed by the representatives of entrepreneurial legal entities, NGOs and  municipality population. The Civil Advisory Council receives a municipal budget draft, as well as other drafts of the significant administrative-legal acts, and infrastructural and social projects to review.  d). Participation in the municipality Sakrebulo sessions and in the sessions of its commission – Participation in these sessions is free for anyone interested. Attendees receive information directly from the first person;

e). Hearing reports on the works performed by a municipality Mayor and  a municipality Sakrebulo member –   The Mayor of a municipality and members of a municipality Sakrebulo are obliged under a law to deliver a report to their constituents on the work performed. Moreover, citizens themselves can request  a delivery of a report to the above-mentioned persons.

The municipality is authorized to define other forms by the legal act that do not contradict the legislation of Georgia.

Quote – ” A democratically organized state seeks to educate people not only as individuals, but also, first and foremost, as the citizens… Undoubtedly, democracy is interested in educating conscious citizens who will be able to creatively intervene in the development of the state.”

Dimitri Uznadze, 1917

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Who can file a petition?

A petition is a way for citizens to appeal to local authorities. According to the Article 86 of the Local Self-Government Code (2015), at less 1% of the constituent registered in the territory of the municipality  or the general assembly of the settlement can submit a petition.

Which issue can be petitioned?

Practically, any issue that has a high interest of the population, concerning normative acts and/or amendments to them, as well as any issue that is important for the municipality can be submitted through the petition.

How long does it take to receive an answer to a petition?

According to the Code, the local self-government must respond to the petition within 2 months from the time of its submission (1 month and 22 days).

Who can participate in the general assembly of the settlement?

Registered constituents of the settlement, as well as other citizens living in the settlement can participate in the assembly. The meeting is authorized if at least 20% of the members participate in it.

How often is the General Assembly of the Settlement held and how the decisions are made ?

The meeting can be held with unlimited numbers. The decisions are made on the basis of polling- by a majority of votes.

What is the function of the Civil Advisory Council?

The Gamgebeli/Mayor of a municipality is obliged to submit the following documents to the Civil Advisory Council for discussion: a municipal budget draft,  documents relating to the municipality spatial planning, proposals on giving names to the municipality geographical features, administrative-legal acts, and infrastructural and social projects. Other authorities of the Civil Advisory Council are determined by a  special document – the statute of the Civil Advisory Council which is approved by the municipality Gamgebeli/Mayor.

Who can be a member of theCivil Advisory Council and how ishe/she elected?

The Civic Advisory Council includes businessmen, civil society institutions and representatives of the municipality population. 

According to the Article 86, the Ccouncil  Civil Advisory Council must be composed of at least 10 members.

There is not an official written selection procedure provided about the composing of the council. After publishing the information about the formation of the council, in some municipalities, the candidates are selected on the basis of their CVs and motivation letters. In other municipalities, the Gamgebeli addresses potential members with a proposal to join the council, while in some cases the candidates are nominated by the population.

How often should the Civil Advisory Council convene?

By the law, a municipal council sesion must be held at least once in every three months.

How is it possible to participate in the municipality Sakrebulo sessions and in the sessions of its commission?

According to The Local Self-Government Code, the sessions of a municipality Sakrebulo and, of a commission of the Sakrebulo are public (except for the special cases provided by the legislation of Georgia). Anyone can attend the municipality Sakrebulo sessions and the sessions of its commission, without any prior notification. The law obliges municipalities to provide seats for those wishing to attend the sessions, or to create the conditions for public hearings so that the interested citizens can hear the case discussion.

What period should they submit the reports on the works done by the municipality Mayor and a member of the municipality Sakrebulo?

According to the Article 88 of the Local Self-Government Code, the report must be submitted at least once a year (no later than November 1st).

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