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2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

CONTENT 1.

OBJECTIVES AND METHODOLOGY OF THE RESEARCH ......................................................................... 4

2.

THE ADMINISTRATION OF SELF-GOVERNMENTAL BODIES IN MONTENEGRO ............................ 6 1. Institutional frame........................................................................................................................................................... 6 2. Organizational structure ............................................................................................................................................... 6 3. Local self-governmental financing............................................................................................................................ 8

3.

POPULATION ..................................................................................................................................................... 10 1.

Demographic characteristics of citizens ............................................................................................................. 11

2.

Use of and service quality of local self governmental bodies ..................................................................... 11

3.

Corruption in local self governmental bodies ................................................................................................... 14

4.

Promptness of local governmental bodies ......................................................................................................... 22

5.

Service accessibility of local self governmental bodies ................................................................................ 25

6.

Attitude of local government employees toward citizens ........................................................................... 27

4.

COMPANIES ........................................................................................................................................................ 29 1.

Demographic characteristics of companies and their authorized representatives .......................... 30

2.

Use of and quality service of local self governmental bodies ..................................................................... 30

3.

Corruption in local self governmental bodies ................................................................................................... 33

4.

Promptness of the local self governmental bodies ......................................................................................... 40

5.

Service accessibility of local government bodies ............................................................................................ 42

6.

Attitude of local self governmental employees and business environment......................................... 44

5.

LOCAL SELF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES ................................................................................................. 48 1.

Demographic characteristics of local self government employees .......................................................... 49

2.

Use of and service quality of local self governmental bodies ..................................................................... 49

3.

Corruption in local self governmental bodies ................................................................................................... 52

4.

Promptness of local governmental bodies ......................................................................................................... 56

5.

Service accessibility of local self governmental bodies ................................................................................ 57

6.

Attitude of local government employees toward parties............................................................................. 57

6.

7.

NON GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATION.................................................................................................... 59 1.

Service use of local governmental bodies ........................................................................................................... 60

2.

Corruption in local governmental bodies ........................................................................................................... 61

3.

Promptness of local government bodies............................................................................................................. 62

4.

Service accessibility of local government bodies ............................................................................................ 62

5.

Behavior of employees in local governmental bodies towards other parties ..................................... 63 RECOMMENDATIONS ...................................................................................................................................... 64

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

1. OBJECTIVES AND METHODOLOGY OF THE RESEARCH In this report, local self government sector integrity and capacity assessment in Montenegro has been based on research, carried out for the purposes of the Directorate for the Anti-Corruption Initiative and for UNDP in Podgorica, by the Centre for Entrepreneurship and Economic Development in Podgorica. The aim of this research was to perform a full analysis of local self government sector integrity and capacity, including all its individual elements and full scope of activities, which makes this research unique. According to the aforementioned defined objectives, the research included the following segments of local self government performance: Use and service quality of local self government bodies; Corruption in local self government bodies; Promptness of local self government bodies; Access to local self government services and Attitude of employees toward service users. The research, at the first level, included service users, citizens and companies, then employees in local self government bodies, and representatives of non-governmental sector organizations, who, within the focus of their program activities, monitor the work of local self government. The research included all municipalities: the Northern, Central and Southern regions, and it were carried out on the sample of 3,480 respondents belonging to the following target groups: 2,759 adult citizens, 331 companies, 381 employees in local government bodies and non-governmental organizations (nine). As a starting point for creating a representative sample at national, regional and local levels1, the following sources were used: MONSTAT data on the number of adult citizens2, central register records from the Commercial Court regarding the number of companies and the number of employees working in local government. Citizens Region Central Northern Southern TOTAL

No of questionnaires 739 1,254 766 2,759

% participation from the sample 26.8 45.5 27.8 100.0

Companies No of questionnaires 130 139 62 331

% participation from the sample 39.4 41.9 18.7 100.0

Employees No of questionnaires 132 168 81 381

% participation from the sample 34.7 43.9 21.4 100.0

Data collection in the field was carried out during February and March 2009 and was performed by a method of field work research, through direct interviews with respondents. The Centre for Entrepreneurship and Economic Development hired a team of 60 polltakers, who attended one-day

Representativeness of a sample implies that selected units of observed groups or populations have the same characteristics as the total population. 2 Population and Households Census 2003. 1

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

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training to introduce them with the content of the questionnaire, the objectives of the research and the deadlines for data collection. According to the methodology of the research, in depth interviews were carried out with representatives from the civil sector. This is recognized as one of the most commonly used techniques for qualitative data collection. Based on the base of non-governmental organizations3, an invitation to participate was sent to all NGOs. However, although 33 non-governmental organizations expressed an interest in participating in the research, thus contributing to a better insight into local government performance, only nine of them replied to the questionnaire. Their responses are given in detail in this report. The questionnaire was created for all categories of respondents, and contained both open and closed questions, along with Likert type scales. The respondents included in this research were guaranteed anonymity, which contributed to obtaining more honest and accurate data. All of these results were processed in this report. Data entry was performed on Microsoft Excel and the data processing, along with any necessary logistical controls, was carried out on the SPSS program (Statistical Package for Social Science and data analysis). In order to better comprehend the legal framework and the analysis of local self government performance, interviews were carried out with employees from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Public Administration – a local self government department. The research had an educational character as well, as direct contact with respondents was used to distribute promotional material for the Directorate for the Anti-Corruption Initiative and its partners. The focus of this was to inform people and to raise the level of public awareness regarding corruption. In accordance with the project objectives, a team of analysts, from the Centre for Entrepreneurship and Economic Development, carried out the data analysis, drew conclusions and made recommendations. The final results will be used for the assessment and improvement of the local self government sector in Montenegro. Considering the way in which the sample was created, its representativeness, and its type of applied methodology, we consider that the presented findings can be treated as valid indicators of the level of integrity and capacity found in local governmental bodies in Montenegro.

3

NGO base was provided by the Centre for NGO Sector Development (CRNVO)

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2. THE ADMINISTRATION OF SELF-GOVERNMENTAL BODIES IN MONTENEGRO According to the Law on Division of the Socialist Republic of Montenegro, which dates from 1990, the country is administratively divided to 21 Municipalities. Municipalities are different in regard to geographic, ethical, economical, cultural and political characteristics. According to this, municipalities in the southern region are mainly geared towards tourism and the naval industry; municipalities in the central region concentrate on trade, education, industry and administrative activities; the municipalities in the north specialize in forestry, the mining industry and other industrial sectors. In addition to the division of Municipalities, Montenegro is divided to three regions: Central region, which includes Cetinje, Danilovgrad, Nikšić and Podgorica; Northern region, which includes Andrijevica, Berane, Bijelo Polje, Kolašin, Mojkovac, Plav, Plužine, Pljevlja, Rožaje, Šavnik and Žabljak; Southern region, which includes Bar, Budva, Herceg Novi, Kotor, Tivat and Ulcinj. The division of Montenegro into different regions is carried out only according to geographical location. It has no relevance regarding administrative reasons. Governance consists of the National Government and other self governments. There is therefore no governance at a regional level. The National Government is in charge of all governmental issues and the self governments are in charge of issues concerning individual municipalities.

1. Institutional frame The Law on Self-Government was adopted in 2003. Certain changes were made in 2004, 2005, and 20064. This law completely changed the competency and authority of self-government, demanding a new organizational structure within the frame of self-government, etc. By this law, it has been ratified that a municipality performs its own business and business which is controlled by law. Effectively, through this act, municipalities have been assigned the responsibility to self govern regarding issues of in-line and joint interest for local population.5 The Government of Montenegro, according to „The Strategy of Administrative Reform of Montenegro 2002 – 2009“, started a policy that will secure democratization, depolarization, decentralization, and expertise in the self-government system, in order to create the right conditions for accelerating the development of self-government. In accordance with this strategy, the Government supported the “Working Program on Better Self-Government in Montenegro”. This program was prepared by the Ministry of Justice in cooperation with the Union of Municipalities of Montenegro, and with assistance from the Council of Europe.

2. Organizational structure The Law on Local Self-Government (Official Gazette No. 45/91, 16/95, 23/96) prescribes that local self governmental bodies should be established as secretariats and that internal organizational units Official Gazette of the Republic of Montenegro, No 42/03, 28/04, 75/05 and 13/06, The Law on Local Self-Governments, Official Gazette of the Republic of Montenegro, No 42/03, 28/04, 75/05 and 13/06, Article 28

4 5

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(department, service, sectors, office) should be established to conduct certain activities under the authority of the local government. This has been implemented in practice and the number of such secretariats varies in each municipality. Organization within a municipality is set individually by each authority and functional principle. In most municipalities, organization is set by the authority principle, where certain operations belonging to compatible fields, regarding management, are organized within secretariats, whilst functional principles such as inspection monitoring are carried out through a central office in the municipality. Local self-governmental bodies include the Assembly and the Mayor/President of the Municipality. The Local Assembly represents the citizens of the municipality and the Mayor is the executor for the municipality.6 Public services include institutions, companies and other organizations established by the municipality. They are responsible for carrying out the affairs of primary jurisdiction related to local self government where common interests are held. These include: the provision of a water supply, waste management, sewage, public traffic, social care for old people and disabled persons, child care, information, culture and physical recreation and sport, etc.

The Law on Local Self-Governments, Official Gazette of the Republic of Montenegro, No 42/03, 28/04, 75/05 and 13/06, Article 41

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

Mayors/Presidents of local governments7 are elected directly by the population and have much more authority now than they had under the old regulations, when they were elected by local assemblies. According to the new law, Mayors/Presidents of local governments nominate the Chief Administrator who is authorized to further nominate (with the permission of the Mayors/Presidents) the Secretaries of the Secretariats and other key employees. This role of the mayors and chief administrators is very important for the internal organization of local governments, the attitude of employees towards their work, for clients and service users (citizens and companies) and for the education of employees. Those employed by local self governmental bodies include, according to the Law on Local SelfGovernments, local civil servants and janitorial staff. They are employed to conduct activities, under the authority of local governments, in a professional manner. The Law on Local Civil Servants and Janitorial Staff (Official Gazette of the Republic of Montenegro, No. 50/08) defines the issues related to hiring and firing, rights and obligations, responsibilities, division of duties, promotion, etc. Issues related to salaries and other income for local civil servants and janitorial staff is defined by the Law on Income for Civil Servants and Janitorial Staff (Official Gazette of the Republic of Montenegro, No. 27/04, 17/07, 27/08).

3. Local self-governmental financing The system of financing local self governments is defined by the Law on Local Self Governments (Official Gazette no 42/03, 28/04, 75/05 and 13/06), by the Law on Local Self-Government Financing (Official Gazette no 42/03 and 44/03) and by special laws for specific areas (taxes, fees, reimbursements, etc.), which belong, entirely or in part, to the local self-government budget. The Law on Local Self-Government defines that municipalities have the right to make decisions regarding public income, as defined by the law, in order to perform the affairs which fall within the boundaries of its jurisdiction. For performing vested and delegated affairs, according to regulations set out in the Law on Local Self Government, resources are provided from the State Budget, in accordance with the rule that define vested or delegated affairs to local self – government. According to the Law on Local Self-Government, there are four sources for financing prior commitments of local self-governments:8 1. Revenue from primary jurisdiction of the local self government (local taxes – surtax to personal income tax, tax on immovable property, tax on consumption, tax on inbuilt construction land, registration tax, tax on the game of chances; local fees – resident fees, administration fees, communal fees; local reimbursement – reimbursement for using construction land, reimbursement for arrangement of construction land, reimbursement for environment protection and improvement, reimbursement for the use of local roads; other revenues introduced by municipality itself, according to special laws); 2. Common revenues –common tax and reimbursement revenues introduced by the State (revenue from personal income tax, revenue from tax on immovable property and revenue Mayors are elected only for Capitol of Podgorica Official Gazette of the Republic of Montenegro, No. 65/08, and Old Royal Capitol of Cetinje Official Gazette of the Republic of Montenegro, No. 47/08. Other municipalities elect presidents of municipalities. 8 Analysis on the local self-government functioning, Ministry on Interior Affairs and Public Services and Union of Municipalities of Montenegro, March 2007 7

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

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from concessions and other reimbursements for using natural resources allocated by the State). 3. Equalization fund – whose resources come from: - Personal income tax at a rate of 11% of the total realized income; - Tax on immovable property at a level of 20% of the total realized income. - Access to resources from this fund is only possible by local self governments whose fiscal capacity (sum of fiscal local revenues – local and common tax and reimbursement revenues) per capita during the year previous to the year for which fiscal equalization has been conducted, is lower than the average fiscal capacity per capita for all local self governments. 4. The State Budget – conditional grants for financing investment projects which are of special interest to local self governments. Access to resources from conditional grants by local selfgovernments. These have brought about a multi annual investment plan (which relates to a period of five years). The Government, following proposals made by the Ministry of Finance, decides on the conditional allocation of grants.

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

3.

POPULATION

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1. Demographic characteristics of citizens The research was carried out in all Montenegrin municipalities on a sample of 2759 citizens. The gender structure of respondents was the following: 51.5% men and 48.5% women. The average age of respondents was 37 years. The level of education of 63% of respondents was secondary school level. The households of interviewed citizens most frequently had four (31%) and five (23%) members, out of which two members earned money (47.7%). Three fifths of citizens (60.5%) were employed, out of which 64.1% worked in the private sector. For 23.2% of respondents, the total income for the household ranged from â‚Ź451 to â‚Ź600.

2. Use of and service quality of local self governmental bodies Interviewed citizens, in most cases, used the services of the local self government during this last year (Chart 1). Observing the structure of responses by region, citizens in southern municipalities used the services of local self governmental bodies to a lower extent than was the case with citizens in the other two regions (Chart 2). The collection of different types of personal documents and the verification of these (certificates, excerpts, receipts, diploma papers, power of attorney, etc.) were the most common reasons for visiting local self governmental bodies. A number of respondents mentioned services that are not under the jurisdiction of local self-government: payment obligations, taxes, the registration of vehicles, driving licenses, etc. Results pointed to a need of better informing and more closely introducing citizens with the basic competencies of local self governments. Chart 1: Have you used the services of local self governmental bodies during this last year?

Chart 2: Have you used the services of local self governmental bodies during this last year (region)? 100.0

91.6

89.8 78.3

80.0

Yes

87.1

60.0 40.0

No

21.7 10.2

8.4

20.0

12.9

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

100.0

North Yes

South No

According to the research results, interviewed citizens often had no need for the services of local self governmental bodies. Most often, they had contact with employees in local governmental bodies once or twice a year (Chart 3). The data that shows that every fifth respondent needed the services of a local governmental body usually appeared once in the period longer than one year. This confirms the fact that respondents in southern municipalities use the services of local governmental bodies to a lower extent (Chart 4).

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

Chart 3:

How often do you use the services of local self governmental bodies?

Chart 4:

How often do you use the services of local self governmental bodies (region)?

50.0 41.6

3.1

Once a week

38.3

40.0 13.8

Once a month

34.8

34.5

32.8 28.1

30.0

Once in six months

19.5

20.0

34.5

10.5

36.1

Once a year

10.0

15.0

15.1 10.3

3.0

9.5 4.6

2.2

0.0

Centre Once a week Once in six months Other

12.5

Other 0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

North

South Once a month Once a year

The quality of work carried out by local self governmental bodies, on the scale ranging from 1-very poor quality to 10-very high quality, was assessed by respondents with an average score of 5.71. Quality assessment is positive, because more than a half of respondents (49.5%) assessed the quality with a score of six or more than six. Citizens in the central and northern regions assessed the work quality of their local self governments with rates higher than the national average (Table 1). Table 1:

Average level of performance quality demonstrated by local self governmental bodies Average level 5.71 6.03 5.90 5.07

Montenegro Centre North South

In terms of opportunities to improve the performance quality of local self governmental bodies, citizens have positive expectations. In fact, four out of five respondents thought that the quality of their work could be improved significantly (Chart 5). Optimism, in terms of the way this segment of local self governmental bodies functions is particularly present with citizens from the southern region, whilst this optimism is the least expressed by citizens from the northern region (Chart 6). Chart 6: Can the performance quality of local governmental bodies be significantly improved (region)?

Chart 5: Can the performance quality of local governmental bodies be significantly improved? 100.0

81.1

79.8

78.3

Yes

75.8

80.0 60.0

No

5.1

40.0 12.3 4.9

6.7

North

South

3.8

16.6

Don't know

19.4

16.4

20.0 0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

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Yes

No

Don't know


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

Citizens recognized the following as the most important ways to improve the performance quality of local self governmental bodies: the implementation of more strict internal controls (24.1%) and a simplification of procedures to obtain permits, decisions, receipts, etc. (23.9%), (Chart 7). Citizens in the central and southern municipalities believed that the greatest improvements could be achieved by simplifying the procedures (26.5% and 27.7% respectively), whilst in the north, people believed that these improvements could only be achieved through the implementation of more strict internal controls (26.7%). Chart 7: In what ways can the performance quality of local self governmental bodies be improved? (%) More stict internal control regarding the performance of local self govermental bodies

24.1

Simplification of procedures for obtaining permits, regulations and confirmations

23.9

Providing better salaries for civil servants

15.1

Introduction of more strict sanctions

13.8

More specific legal regulations (scope of activities and time frame)

12.8

More transparent work of Local Government bodies

8.0

Other

2.3

0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

According to the opinions of citizens, the most negative manifestations present in the performance of local self governmental bodies, were the complex and complicated procedures and regulations (average rate 5.88) and the high service price (average rate 5.54), (Chart 8). From a total of six defined negative manifestations assessed by respondents, the presence of corruption was ranked as four in local self governmental bodies with an average score of 4.86 (Chart 8). Average scores for the existence of the following negative manifestations in the work of local self government bodies

4.73

4.54

Lack of transparency

Bad attitude of employees toward citizens

5.88

Complex and complicated procedures and regulations

5.54

High price of services

5.27 4.86

Lack of promptness

10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

Corruption

Chart 8:

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

Comparing the data on a region by region basis, respondents in the southern municipalities assessed that there was a higher level of negative manifestations present in local self governments than did respondents in northern municipalities, where the rates were the lowest. Additionally, on a national level, citizens identified insufficiently clear and complicated procedures and regulations as being the major problem in all three regions (Table 2). Table 2:

Average scores for the following negative manifestations Montenegro Centre North 5.88 5.54 5.27 4.86 4.73 4.54

Complex and complicated procedures and regulations High price of services Lack of promptness Corruption Lack of transparency Bad attitude of employees toward citizens

6.12 5.70 5.31 5.31 4.66 4.56

5.23 5.12 4.92 4.04 4.43 4.17

South 6.89 6.18 5.90 5.95 5.39 5.25

3. Corruption in local self governmental bodies The highest number of surveyed citizens defined corruption as bribery, giving or receiving money. In addition, corruption is defined as: abuse of office, illegal work and the acquisition of money, etc. (Table 3). The aforementioned definitions represent the elements of corruption and can be taken as a parameter that the respondents are aware of this and are able to recognize the forms of corrupt behavior in their environment. Respondents in the north, to a greater extent, defined corruption as bribery more than in the other two regions. Also, in relation to the national average, citizens in southern municipalities defined the abuse of office as a form of corruption at a low percentage rate. Additionally, the greatest percentage of them did not define this term (Table 3). Table 3:

Definition of corruption (%) Montenegro Centre

Bribery Abuse of office Performing duties in an illegal manner Illegally acquiring money Money extortion Nepotism Deviation of social values Ordinary way of functioning of national and local governmental bodies Taking advantage of people Other Don’t know/No response

North

South

51.4 15.7 6.5 5.3 4.3 3.4 1.8

46.5 16.5 6.5 3.9 7.4 6.0 2.7

54.3 19.2 6.1 8.5 2.5 2.1 0.6

51.2 9.1 7.2 1.6 4.2 3.0 2.9

0.8

0.7

0.5

1.4

0.3 1.8 8.7

1.1 2.3 6.4

0.1 0.9 5.3

0.0 2.9 16.6

Citizens assessed the level of corruption on the scale from 1 – no corruption to 10 – corruption highly present at a medium level score of 4.96. As in the previous cases, citizens in the south thought that the level of corruption was highest, whilst those in the north thought it was at the lowest level in comparison with the national average (Chart 9). Out of the total number of citizens surveyed, 45.6% 14 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

assessed the presence of corruption at a level of between one and four. This indicates that the manifestation of corruption is present to a lower extent in local self governmental bodies. More detailed analysis showed that respondents, who assessed the level of corruption with scores ranging between 1 and 3 – no corruption, had formed their opinions based on their own personal experience (61.0%). Respondents, who assessed the level of corruption with scores between 4-10 – corruption is present, 59.0% of them had formed their opinions on the basis of experience/opinions of others and 41% on the basis of their own personal experience. Respondents’ opinions regarding the existence of corruption was influenced by long periods of time waiting in lines, gifts that citizens give to employees for job completed by “queue jumping”, because “if you wait in line somewhere, the one who brings gifts will finish job faster” and “if one has no connections (ties), one cannot finish anything”. The given results lead to the conclusion that the opinion of respondents regarding the existence of and the level of corruption in local self governmental bodies is greatly affected by talking to other people, by the experience of friends, relatives, through both electronic and printed media, because of the existence of nepotism, etc, as well as a number of arrests which have been due, beyond reasonable doubt, to the fact that certain individuals have committed criminal acts of corruption and other forms of abuse of office. Chart 9:

Average rate of the level of corruption in local self governmental bodies 10 9 8 7 5.92

5.48

6 4.96

5 4.10

4 3 2 1 Montenegro

Centre

North

South

Ranking the answers by sectors in which corruption is the most visible, citizens singled out those related to facility construction, i.e. the issuing of construction permits (average rate 4.82), construction inspections (4.39) and urbanism (4.19). The conclusion that can be drawn, based on the given results, is that citizens see the biggest problems faced by local government in the area of construction and inspections carried out in this field. This problem is particularly present in southern municipalities where respondents, on a scale from 1 – not at all present to 10 – extremely present, assessed the level of corruption at an average level of 6.24, urbanism at a level of 5.83, construction inspection at a level of 5.68 and spatial planning at a level of 5.26 (Table 4). Only one out of six respondents (17%) formed his/her opinion regarding the level of corruption based on his/her own personal experience, which, in the majority of cases was related to obtaining construction permits, spatial planning and urbanism. On the other hand, 83.0% of surveyed citizens when assessing the level of corruption had not formed their opinions based on their own personal Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

experience. This indicates that respondents’ perception regarding the existence of corruption in these bodies was higher than the data which had been gained from respondents’ direct experience. Table 4:

Average rates of the level of corruption in local self governmental bodies Montenegro Centre North 4.82 4.39 4.19 3.83 3.79 3.55 3.52 3.13 2.71

Facility construction/issuing construction permits Construction inspections Urbanism Local officials Spatial planning Communal police Determining, control and collection of municipal fees and taxes Tax Administration of Montenegro–district unit in your municipality Municipal window services

5.11 4.77 4.10 4.64 3.68 3.84 3.53 3.15 2.99

South

3.84 3.43 3.32 3.30 3.01 2.84 2.97 2.62 2.32

According the citizens’ opinions, the most common cause of corruption in local self governmental bodies was poor application of the law and a lack of efficient internal and external controls aimed at repressing corruption. Regardless of the fact that complicated procedures were identified as the most negative manifestation in local government bodies, respondents did not consider this to be the cause of corruption, at least not a direct one (Chart 10). The answer structure was similar in all regions. In the municipalities in the north and in the central region, respondents singled out, above the average score, a poor application of the law and regulations as the main cause of corruption (28.4% and 28.3% respectively). When compared with citizens from the central and southern regions, respondents in the north thought, to a much lower extent, that the low salaries of local government employees were the cause of corruption. Chart 10:

The main causes of corruption in local self governmental bodies (%) 27.5

Poor application of laws and regulations Lack of efficient internal and external controls to repress corruption Low salaries for civil servants in local government Lack of information available to citizens regarding their rights

24.1

18.7

12.3 7.1

Lack of transparency in municipal bodies Complex and complicated procedures and regulations

4.2

Other

4.0

2.1

Don’t know/No answer 0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

When asked the question whether a local government employee had given the respondent the opportunity to offer a bribe, nine out of ten citizens had not experienced such a situation. On the other hand, 8.9% or 241 citizens reported such requests by local self governmental employees (Chart 11). According to the given results, the citizens in the south had had a greater opportunity to find 16 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

6.24 5.68 5.83 3.93 5.26 4.52 4.50 4.03 3.14


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

themselves in a situation where they were being requested to pay a bribe than had the citizens in either the central or northern regions (Chart 12). Based on respondents’ answers, employees in construction inspection, communal inspection, municipal window services and urbanism had in the majority of cases sent requests for bribes. The aforementioned bodies were reported by citizens from northern municipalities as being the highest percentage. It is significant to the data that 44% or 106 respondents, who reported that some employees had asked them a bribe, did not want to state for which service it had been asked. This is particularly characteristic for citizens in the southern region. Chart 11:

Has a local governmental employee requested a bribe from you?

Chart 12: Has a local governmental employee requested a bribe from you (region)? 94.1

92.2

100.0 8.9

Yes

86.4

80.0 60.0 40.0 91.1

No

20.0

13.6

7.8

5.9

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

100.0

North

South

Yes

No

Respondents who found themselves in a situation where they were asked for a bribe, most often they accepted to respond to the request (36.9% or 89 out of 241 respondents who stated that one of the local self government employees had asked him/her for a bribe). However, regarding the way that respondents reacted to such a request, it is important to state that almost every third respondent (70 respondents) refused to answer this question (Chart 13). Observing the results given on a region by region basis, the answer structure was such that respondents living in southern municipalities refused, at a level above the national average, to give a bribe (38.6%), whilst respondents from the northern and central municipalities accepted to meet such requests (37.2% and 37.1% respectively)(Chart 14). Chart 13:

How did you react to the request to pay a bribe?

Chart 14:

40.0

37.2

How did you react to the request to pay a bribe (region)? 36.6

37.1

34.9

38.6

34.0

36.9

Accepted

27.9

30.0

34.0

Refused

28.9 24.8

20.0

10.0 29.0

Don't want to answer

0.0 0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

Centre Agreed

North Disagreed

South

Don't want to answer

The key activity in the fight against corruption is to report the request for the bribe or any other corrupt behavior. However, despite the fact that citizens are aware of the negative effect of corruption Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative 17


2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

on society in general, 95% (or 218 respondents) of those who found themselves in the situation of being asked for a bribe by a local government employee, did not report him/her. Only eight or 3.5% of respondents reported such cases to relevant authorities (Chart 15). Not reporting employees who have requested bribes was most frequently seen from respondents living in the central and southern regions. Citizens in the north only reported these kinds of requests to the principal of the local self governmental body, 7.5% or seven respondents, whilst those from the central region only reported such incidents to the police department, 2.6% or one respondent (Chart 16). As a result of reporting an employee who had asked for a bribe, in three cases the complaint was declared unfounded, and in two cases the employee was reprimanded. The outcome of the complaint regarding another two cases is still pending. In one case the employee was suspended for a certain period and transferred to another position. Chart 15:

Have you reported the request for a bribe to one of the authorities?

Chart 16: Have you reported the request for a bribe to one of the authorities (region)? 100.0

95.2

I didn't report him/her

97.4

96.9

92.5

80.0 60.0

I reported him to Principal of Local Government body

3.1

40.0 20.0

I did, to the Police Department

0.4

7.5

2.6

Centre Other

1.3

0.0

3.1

0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

North

South

I didn't report him/her I reported him to Principal of Local Government body I did, to the Police Department Other

The most important reason for not reporting a request for a bribe was a lack of trust in the relevant authorities. Namely, 34.7% or 75 out of 218 respondents who did not report the employee who had asked them for a bribe gave their main reason for not reporting it as the fact that the authorities in charge would not have done a thing. Also, the fear of failing to accomplish the task had significantly influenced the decision of many to not report the case of corruption, 26.9% or 58 respondents (Chart 17). Lack of trust in the authorities in charge was significantly higher in respondents from the central region than was the case with respondents from the other two regions (Chart 18). Chart 17:

Reason for not reporting the request for a bribe?

Chart 18:

50.0

Authorities would not do anything

Reason for not reporting the request for a bribe (region)?

47.4

34.7

40.0

A fear of not finishing the task in hand

20.0 16.7

A fear of negative consequences or revenge

10.0

20.0

10.5

14.1 10.6

10.5

17.2 14.0 6.5

0.0

Centre

8.8

0.0

28.0

23.5 22.4

10.0

13.0

Other

29.4

30.0

26.9

Authorities themselves are corrupt

34.4

31.6

30.0

40.0

18 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

North

South

Authorities would not do anything A fear of not finishing the task in hand Authorities themselves are corrupt A fear of negative consequences or revenge Other


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

The citizens surveyed have a high level of awareness of the adversity of corruption and the negative attitude caused by this phenomenon. Namely, according to research results, out of a total number of respondents, 87.9% had never been offered the opportunity to pay a bribe in order to solve their case or to obtain a service, which was in the job description of the employee. According to given results, 4.5% or 183 of respondents (Chart 19) offered to pay a bribe. The answer structure on a region by region basis is similar, except that in the central region the percentage of respondents who did not offer a bribe was higher than the national average (Chart 20). Respondents, who offered a bribe, in the majority of cases, offered it to services which issue construction permits, municipal window services and to the communal police. Chart 19: Have you ever been given the opportunity to pay a bribe?

Chart 20: Have you ever been given the opportunity to pay a bribe (region)? 100.0

92.0

89.1

88.3

4.5

Yes

80.0 60.0 89.7

No

40.0 20.0

Don't want to answer

5.1

6.6

4.3

2.9

5.8

7.4

4.3

0.0

Centre 0.0 10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0 60.0 70.0 80.0 90.0

North

Yes

No

South

Don't want to answer

According to results obtained, the existence of nepotism is present to a certain extent. Namely, every fifth citizen or 529 citizens sometimes “finished the job” with the help of a friend, relative, or a friend from a local self government. Also, every fifth respondent refused to answer this question (Chart 21). Respondents who used their relatives’ or friends’ contacts with local self governmental bodies most often received their documents before time (earlier) or “over the line”. On the other hand, the important data provided by this research is that respondents’ opinion regarding the level of corruption in local self governmental bodies was very much influenced by manifestations such as long waiting times in queues, acquaintance of other citizens with employees in local government bodies, etc. The existence of nepotism is particularly present in the central region. In comparison to the national average, respondents from the northern municipalities used family relationships for “finishing” the job to a much lower extent (Chart 22). Chart 21:

Chart 22: Have you ever “finished the job using your connections” (region)?

Have you ever “finished the job using your connections”?

64.8

70.0 19.2

Yes

60.6

54.9

60.0 50.0 40.0 60.7

No

28.6

30.0

20.8 16.5

20.0

18.2

21.1

14.4

10.0

Don't want to answer

20.2

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

Yes

North No

South Don't want to answer

Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

19


2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

Respondents ranked the importance of different ways to fight corruption. According to them, the most efficient way of fighting corruption would be to implement more strict internal controls regarding the performance of local governmental bodies (19.1%). Also, significant results could be achieved by publicly disclosing the legal proceedings of solved cases (16.2%) and by introducing more severe sanctions (15.7%), (Table 5). Table 5:

The best ways of fighting corruption (%) Montenegro

More strict internal controls regarding the performance of local self governmental bodies Public disclosure of legal proceedings concerning solved cases of corruption and other illegal behavior Introducing more strict sanctions Providing higher salaries for employees Campaign aimed at raising the level of awareness of parties on the adversity of corruption Simplifying procedures and shortening timescales to obtain permits, decisions, receipts, etc More specific legal regulations in this area Campaign aimed at raising the level of awareness of employees in local governmental bodies regarding the adversity of corruption More transparent work of local government bodies Other

Centre

North

South

19.1

17.1

19.9

20.0

16.2

18.3

14.7

16.0

15.7 10.1

14.5 11.5

16.7 9.5

15.5 9.5

9.7

8.9

10.9

8.8

9.2

9.3

7.8

11.1

8.7

7.1

10.8

7.4

6.1

6.5

6.0

5.9

3.9 1.3

5.0 1.9

3.1 0.6

3.9 2.1

Corruption is a negative phenomenon and it does not affect only particular areas of society. This was concluded on the basis of this research. Namely, half of the respondents thought that corruption harms everyone, not only the citizens or local government employees (Chart 23). This opinion was most strongly represented by respondents from the north of the country (Chart 24). Chart 23: Who does corruption in local self governmental bodies harm the most?

Chart 24: Who does corruption in local self governmental bodies harm the most (region)? 60.0

Everybody

54.3

52.5

50.4

52.7

46.3 43.1

Citizens

40.0

44.0

Civil servants

20.0

2.1

1.9 1.4

1.2

Other

2.9 1.5

1.7 1.0

0.0

Centre 0.0

43.2

20.0

40.0

60.0

Everybody

North Citizens

South

Civil servants

Other

Citizens most often thought that elected representatives/local parliament members could contribute to the fight against corruption, 64.9% (Chart 25). The trust in their contribution, when compared to the national average, was most significantly expressed by respondents from the northern municipalities (Chart 26). 20 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

Respondents saw the best ways for them to contribute as being: by increasing their engagement regarding this problem area, by implementing stricter internal controls, public disclosure and by initiating procedures to reveal cases, by adopting better laws as well as by increasing the salaries of employees. Chart 25: Can elected representatives contribute to the fight against corruption?

Chart 26: Can elected representatives contribute to the fight against corruption (region)? 70.0

Yes

64.9

66.8

64.7

61.9

60.0 50.0 40.0

32.1

No

29.6

28.7

29.9

30.0 20.0 8.5

Don't know

10.0

5.3

4.5

3.2

0.0

Centre 0.0

10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0 60.0 70.0

Yes

North No

South Don't know

Citizens assessed differently the levels of corruption in other public services. On a scale from 1- no corruption to 10 – corruption highly present, health care was assessed as being the most corrupt (average rate 4.86) closely followed by the police (average rate 4.80). Observing the given results on a region by region basis, the significant difference in the assessment of the presence of corruption between the north, on one side, and the central and southern areas on the other side, is notable. Namely, citizens in the central and southern municipalities assessed the level of corruption in the health care system at a level of 5.69 and 5.64 respectively. In the police it was recorded at a level of 5.40 and 5.39. Also, citizens from the southern municipalities assessed corruption in Cadastre (Land Registry) at an average level of 5.68, which is considerably higher than the national level (4.05) (Table 6). Every fifth respondent formed his/her opinion regarding the the level of corruption based on his/her own personal experience, which was most often reflected in giving money and certain gifts to medical staff and to traffic police officers. Table 6:

The level of corruption in other public services Montenegro Centre

Health Care Police Cadastre (Land Registry) Electro distribution Education system Media Utility services Tax Administration of Montenegro – district unit in your municipality Waterworks Civil sector (NGO)

North

South

4.86 4.80 4.05 3.86 3.82 3.21 3.13 3.11

5.69 5.40 3.93 4.13 4.30 3.65 3.37 3.11

3.93 4.13 3.19 3.50 3.31 2.75 2.56 2.59

5.64 5.39 5.68 4.25 4.25 3.58 3.89 4.04

2.74 2.33

2.59 2.46

2.39 2.14

3.56 2.55

Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

4. Promptness of local governmental bodies The highest level of promptness on a scale from 1 – not present to 10 – highly present was standard for departments dealing with determining, controlling and charging municipal fees and taxes (5.99) and municipal window services (5.92). Observing the rates on a region by region basis in comparison to the national average, citizens from the central region assessed these departments as being the most prompt. According to citizens from all three regions, the department for issuing construction permits was the least prompt (Table 7). However, even though average rates did not show, a higher level of promptness was present in the department for determining, controlling and charging municipal fees and taxes, as more than half of respondents (50.6%) rated the promptness of this department with either a score of six or more than six. On the other hand, the promptness of the municipal window service department was assessed at a level of six or more than six by 34.5% of respondents. Table 7:

The level of promptness in local government bodies Montenegro Centre 5.99 5.92 5.69 5.38 5.35 4.80 4.76 4.57

Determining, control and collection of municipal fees and taxes Municipal window services Communal police Local officials Construction inspections Spatial planning Urbanism Facility construction/issuing construction permits

North

6.19 6.09 6.42 5.02 5.56 4.74 4.81 4.57

6.17 6.11 5.94 5.55 5.72 5.07 5.00 4.76

South 5.58 5.40 4.87 5.31 4.81 4.55 4.48 4.35

During this last year, following requests for information or service delivery, citizens in 16.1% of cases had received an answer from the local governmental body outside the period prescribed by law (Chart 27). In relation to the national average, these delays were the most significant in the southern municipalities, 23.2% (Chart 28). Chart 27: Did you receive an answer to your request outside the period of time prescribed by the law during this last year?

Chart 28: Did you receive an answer to your request outside the period of time prescribed by the law during this last year (region)? 88.1

85.7

90.0

76.8

80.0

Yes

70.0

16.1

60.0 50.0 40.0 23.2

30.0

No

83.9

20.0

14.3

11.9

10.0 0.0

Centre 0.0 10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0 60.0 70.0 80.0 90.0

22 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

North Yes

South No


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

Regarding these delays, in the majority of cases, problems were caused by the municipal window service department (26.0%), the department for issuing construction permits (15.3%) and urbanism (12.8%) during the last year. The results showed on a region by region basis that delays in replying to requests in the municipal window service department were noticeable in the central region (37.5%), whilst in southern municipalities this was the case with the urbanism department (22.1%), (Table 8). Table 8:

Departments that replied to requests for information or services outside the time period prescribed by law (%) Montenegro Centre North South

Municipal window services

26.0

37.5

24.8

20.9

Facility construction/issuing construction permits

15.3

14.6

13.4

18.0

Urbanism

12.8

8.3

6.9

22.1

Determining, control and collection of municipal fees and taxes

11.1

7.3

17.3

5.8

Local officials

10.2

11.5

15.8

2.9

Communal police Construction inspections

8.5 7.4

6.3 8.3

8.9 6.4

9.3 8.1

Spatial planning

2.8

2.1

2.5

3.5

Other

6.0

4.2

4.0

9.3

Out of the total number of respondents, 14.0% or 386 citizens, during this last year, had experienced negative consequences as a result of errors in the performance of local government employees (Chart 29). In relation to the central and northern regions, respondents from southern municipalities had to a greater extent experienced negative consequences because of these errors (Chart 30). Chart 29: Have you experienced any negative consequences due to errors made by local self governmental employees during this last year?

Chart 30: Have you experienced any negative consequences due to errors made by local self governmental employees during this last year (region)? 89.6

86.8 81.3

90.0 80.0

Yes

70.0

14.0

60.0 50.0 40.0 30.0 86.0

No

20.0

18.7

13.2

10.4

10.0 0.0

Centre 0.0 10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0 60.0 70.0 80.0 90.0

Yes

North

South No

Out of the total number of respondents who had experienced negative consequences caused by errors in the work of local self governmental employees, 47.7% filed complaints (Chart 31). Even though the largest number of citizens from the southern municipalities, when compared with the number of citizens from the other two regions, had experienced negative consequences, the lowest Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative 23


2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

percentage of them actually filed complaints to the authorities (42.7%). Respondents from the northern municipalities had filed the highest number of complaints in comparison with the national average (53.6%), (Chart 32). Chart 31:

Have you filed a complaint regarding an error made by an employee?

Chart 32: Have you filed a complaint regarding an error made by an employee (region)? 55.8

60.0

57.3

53.6 46.4

44.2

42.7

47.7

Yes

40.0

20.0 52.3

No

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

North Yes

South No

For the purpose of overcoming the problem of a lack of promptness in the work of local self governmental bodies, 22.4% of citizens suggested more strict internal controls and the introduction of more severe sanctions. This measure was mostly suggested by citizens from the northern and southern regions as being the most efficient solution. Citizens in the central region remained neutral about this. They did, however, all agree that significant results could be achieved by introducing stricter penalties. On the other hand, in comparison with the national average, respondents from the central region emphasized that simplifying procedures and shortening the term for obtaining permits, decisions; certificates, etc. would be the measure which would lead to improved promptness (Table 9). Table 9:

Ways of overcoming a lack of promptness in local self governmental bodies (%) Montenegro Centre North South

More strict internal controls regarding the performance of local self governmental bodies Introducing more strict sanctions

22.4

19.8

23.7

23.0

17.2

15.2

18.0

17.7

Simplifying procedures and shortening timescales to obtain permits, decisions, receipts, etc Providing higher salaries for employees

16.9

21.9

15.9

16.3

13.4

15.3

11.4

11.6

Campaign and education aimed at raising the level of knowledge of citizens’ rights More specific legal regulations in this area (scope of activities and time frame) More transparent work of local government bodies

12.0

8.5

14.0

12.6

11.7

11.7

12.3

11.0

5.2

6.2

3.8

6.3

1.1

1.4

0.9

1.5

Other

24 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

5. Service accessibility of local self governmental bodies Citizens regarded the service prices charged by local government services as high. Comparing their answers for all three categories, the largest number of respondents (67.6%) still singled out high prices for issuing permits charged by local self governmental bodies (Chart 33). In comparison with the national average, a higher percentage of respondents in the southern municipalities regarded these prices as high, whilst this percentage was the lowest in northern municipalities. Two thirds of respondents or 64.8% emphasized that the quality of services provided by local governmental bodies was not in accordance with the prices they charged (Chart 34). This opinion was strongly upheld by respondents from the central and southern regions (66.5% and 71.9% respectively). Chart 33:

The level of fees charged by local government bodies

Service prices

2.1

Permit prices

2.1

40.9

Chart 34: Is the level of fees charged for providing services in accordance with their quality?

57.0

30.3

Yes

32.9

67.6

No

Fee amount

5.5

33.0

64.8

61.5

Don't know 0.0

20.0

Low

40.0

60.0

Real

80.0

0.2

100.0 0.0

High

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

60.0

70.0

The total amount of payments made by citizens to local self governmental bodies on all grounds, during this last year, in 27.1% of cases, amounted to between €11 and €50. Every fifth respondent had incurred costs of €10 (21.6%) and between €51 and €100 (21.9%), (Chart 35). The level of costs incurred which totaled €50 was most present in the north of the country in relation to the other two regions. On the other hand, total costs from €50 to €100 were more frequently paid by respondents from the central and southern regions (Chart 36). Chart 35:

The total amount of payments made to local self governmental bodies?

Up to €10

Chart 36: The total amount of payments made to local self governmental bodies (region)? 30.0

21.6

29.9

28.1

26.8 23.2

€11 - €50

21.4

27.1

23.2 21.6

20.2

20.0

€51 – €100

17.1

21.9

12.7

11.8

€101 – €250

13.6

€251 – €500

8.3

10.0

7.2

5.8

12.9 12.3

12.9

4.6

8.4

More than €500

0.0

7.4

0.0

10.0

Centre 20.0

30.0

Up to €10 €101 – €250

North €11 - €50 €251 – €500

South €51 – €100 More than €500

Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

25


2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

The services provided by the local self government bodies, bearing in mind the price they charge, for 44.1% citizens were partially accessible, whilst 39.3% regarded them as accessible (Chart 37). Results on a region by region basis showed that services were most often only partly accessible for citizens in the south 53.9%, whilst citizens in the north regarded them as being accessible, 45.9%. Local self governmental bodies and employees were sometimes (34.3%) and often (33.5%) accessible to citizens during the last twelve months. Starting from the results obtained, the general assessment of accessibility was positive as more than half of the respondents (55.3%) stated that the bodies and employees were often or always accessible9 (Chart 38). For citizens living in northern municipalities, in relation to respondents living in the other two regions, the relevant bodies and employees were nearly always accessible to them (41.4%). Also, two fifths of citizens (40.9%) stated that they mostly they received any information they requested very easily from competent authorities and local governmental bodies (Chart 39). This was particularly characteristic for respondents living in northern municipalities who, in comparison with the national average, 47.5% of respondents stated that they obtained the information they required in an easy way. Chart 37:

Service accessibility of local self governmental bodies?

Chart 38: Accessibility of local self governmental bodies and employees?

4.8

Very accessible

Never

Accessible

39.3

Accessible to some extent

Rarely 44.0

Inaccessible

Chart 39:

34.2

Often

3.5

0.0

10.3

Sometimes

8.3

Very inaccessible

2.1

33.5

Always

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

19.8

0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

Obtaining information from competent authorities in local self government Very hard

3.9

Hard

11.6

Partially hard

35.9

40.9

Easy Very easy

7.5

0.0

10.0

20.0

9 “Often“ + “Always”= 34.3%+ 33.5 = 55.3%

26 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

30.0

40.0

50.0

40.0


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

Citizens assessed the complex and complicated procedures in local governmental bodies with different indicator values. According to their opinions, on a scale from 1 – not complicated to 10 – very complicated, the most highly complex procedures were identified as issuing work permits (6.89), urbanism (6.31) and construction inspections (6.03). Observing the answer structure on a region by region basis, it is noticeable that citizens from the central and northern regions assessed that there was a higher presence of complex and complicated procedures in local self governmental bodies than was perceived as being the case in the north, where the rates were the lowest (Table 10). Table 10:

Average rates of the complexity of procedures in local governmental bodies Montenegro Centre North South 6.89 6.31 6.03 5.69 5.61 4.85 4.82 3.78

Facility construction/issuing construction permits Urbanism Construction inspections Local officials Spatial planning Determining, control and collection of municipal fees and taxes Communal police Municipal window services

7.08 6.93 6.50 6.63 6.07 4.79 5.22 4.25

6.44 5.63 5.52 5.37 4.85 4.47 4.29 3.22

7.33 6.78 6.34 5.67 6.17 5.41 5.28 4.26

6. Attitude of local government employees toward citizens The behavior of local government employee towards citizens was assessed as being normal by 45.6% of respondents. According to given results, respondents from the north and south, in comparison with those from the central region, a higher percentage assessed that the behavior of employees was normal (47.0% and 47.4% respectively). During this last year, almost every fifth respondent, 18,7% or 515 respondents experienced an unpleasant situation involving a local self governmental employee and every fourth respondent 26.6% or 735 respondents witnessed unpleasant behavior by employees towards citizens (Chart 40 and 41). In comparison with the respondents from other two regions, respondents from the southern municipalities both experienced and witnessed the unpleasant behavior of local self governmental employees towards citizens more often, (21.5% and 30.4% respectively). Chart 40: Have you experienced an unpleasant situation with local self government employees (%)?

18.7

Yes

81.3

20.0

40.0

26.6

Yes

No

0.0

Chart 41: Have you witnessed unpleasant behavior by employee towards citizens (%)?

60.0

80.0

100.0

73.4

No

0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

27


2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

Out of the total number of respondents who experienced unpleasant situations with local self governmental employees, only 21.2% or 109 respondents filed a complaint to the relevant authorities. In comparison with the national average, the citizens from the northern municipalities had more complaints (28.0%) than did the respondents in the central region, where this percentage was the lowest (12.9%). The main reason for not reporting unpleasant behavior to the relevant authorities, out of 397 citizens who experienced unpleasantness, more than half of them (55.2%) stated a fear of failing to finish the job. In relation to the national average, the aforementioned reason was the most present in responses from respondents in the central region (58.9%). When asked to compare the current situation with the situation over the last two years, citizens stated that during the observed period, a significant improvement had been achieved. The value of the indicator measuring the level of improvement amounted to 5.87, on a scale from 1 - drastically aggravated to 10- drastically improved. Namely, in comparison with the national average, respondents in the central region rated this relationship as being more positive, with an average score of 6.21, than did respondents in the south who gave a lower average score of 5.43 (Chart 42). Chart 42:

Average scores regarding the attitude of local self governmental employees towards citizens over the last two years 10 9 8 7 6

5.87

6.21

5.94

5.43

5 4 3 2 1 Montenegro

Centre

28 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

North

South


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

4.

2009

COMPANIES

Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

29


2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

1. Demographic characteristics of companies and their authorized representatives Total number of companies included in the sample was 331. The companies were usually established after 1998 (73.5%) and in most cases privately owned with domestic capital (89.8%). The number of employees in these companies ranged from 10 to more than 50 employees. The organization form of seven out of ten interviewed companies (69.8%) was Limited Liability Company and every fifth was organized as entrepreneur. Two fifths of the companies (42.8%) achieved annual turnover that amounted to ₏50.000 in 2008. Gender structure of company representatives was moved in favor of men – 58.4%. The age structure of respondents mostly ranged from 30 to more than 47 (26.2% and 26.5% respectively). Every second company representative (50%) completed secondary school.

2. Use of and quality service of local self governmental bodies Almost all company representatives during the last year used services of local self governmental bodies (Chart 43). More detailed insight into the structure by region showed that there were no major deviations from the aforementioned (Chart 44). The collection of different types of documents and the verification of these, tax payments and other kinds of company-related payments were the most common reasons for visiting local self governmental bodies. Chart 43: Has your company used the services of local self governmental bodies during this last year?

Chart 44: Has your company used the services of local self governmental bodies during this last year (region)? 97.1

95.3

96.3

100.0 96.4

Yes

80.0 60.0 40.0

3.6

20.0

No

4.7

2.9

3.7

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

100.0

North Yes

South No

The nature of daily activities of the company implies contact with the local self governmental bodies, which for almost half of the companies (47.4%) was achieved once a month (Chart 45). Respondents from northern region used the services of local self governmental bodies once a week in higher percentage in comparison to the respondents from central and southern region (Chart 46).

30 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment Chart 45:

How often do you use the services of local self governmental bodies?

2009

Chart 46: How often do you use the services of local self governmental bodies (region)? 60.0

52.5

12.1

Once a week

45.5

43.8

47.4

Once a month

40.0 26.2

20.0

13.1

11.6

8.8

Once a year

21.8

21.6

23.0

Once in six months

11.5

10.1

5.4

12.7

12.7 7.3

4.3

0.0 8.7

Other 0.0

10.0

Centre 20.0

30.0

40.0

North

Once a week Once in six months Other

50.0

South Once a month Once a year

The quality of work carried out by local self governmental bodies, on the scale ranging from 1-very poor quality to 10-very high quality, was assessed by company representatives with an average score of 6.13. Quality assessment is positive, since more than a half of companies (58.6%) assessed the quality with the sore of six and more than six. The company representatives in the central region assessed the work quality of their local self governmental bodies with rates higher than national average (Table 11). Table 11:

Average level of performance quality demonstrated by local self governmental bodies Average level 6.13 6.71 5.94 5.16

Montenegro Centre North South

Despite positive expectations of the companies in terms of opportunities to improve the performance quality of local self governmental bodies, eight out of ten company representatives thought that their work could be improved significantly in the following period (Chart 47). Optimism, in terms of the way this segment of local self governmental bodies functions is particularly present with the companies from the southern region, whilst this optimism is the least expressed by companies citizens from the central region (Chart 48). Chart 47: Can the performance quality of local governmental bodies be significantly improved?

Chart 48: Can the performance quality of local governmental bodies be significantly improved (region)? 100.0

Yes

89.1 80.6

78.5

80.0

73.1

60.0 3.6

No

40.0 24.6 14.4

20.0 2.3

17.9

Don't know

5.0

3.6

7.3

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

North Yes

No

South Don't know

Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

Company representatives recognized the following as the most important ways to improve the performance quality of local self governmental bodies: more specific laws, more strict internal control and simplification of procedures to obtain permits, receipts and certificates (Chart 49). Companies in the central and northern municipalities believed that the greatest improvements could be achieved by simplifying the procedures to obtain permits, receipts, etc., whilst in the south; companies believed that these improvements could only be achieved through the implementation of more specific laws and more strict internal controls. Chart 49: In what ways can the performance quality of local self governmental bodies be improved? (%) More specific legal regulations (scope of activities and time frame)

21.7

More stict internal control regarding the performance of local self govermental bodies

21.5

Simplification of procedures for obtaining permits, decisions, receipts etc

21.3

12.9

Providing better salaries for civil servants

10.6

Introduction of more strict sanctions More transparent work of Local Government bodies

9.7 2.3

Other 0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

According to the opinions of company representatives, the most negative manifestations present in the performance of local self governmental bodies were the high service price and the complex and complicated procedures and regulations (average rate 6.17 and 6.02 respectively) (Chart 50). From a total of six defined negative manifestations assessed by companies, the presence of corruption was ranked as five in local self governmental bodies with an average score of 4.16.

6.17

6.02

4.79

4.82

4.16

32 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

Lack of transparency

Complex and complicated procedures and regulations

High price of services

3.83

Lack of promptness

Corruption

10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

Average scores for the following negative manifestations

Bad attitude of employees towards company representatives

Chart 50:


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

Company representatives in southern and northern municipalities assessed that there was a higher level of negative manifestations present in local self governments than did respondents in the central region, where the rates were the lowest. Additionally, on a national level, companies identified high services prices and complicated procedures and regulations as the major problem in all three regions (Table 12). Table 12:

Average scores for the following negative manifestations Montenegro Centre North

High price of services Complex and complicated procedures and regulations Lack of transparency Lack of promptness Corruption Bad attitude of employees towards company representatives

South

6.17 6.02 4.82 4.79 4.16

5.98 5.65 4.70 4.06 4.29

6.24 5.94 4.57 4.74 3.52

7.00 7.12 6.02 6.42 5.90

3.83

3.25

3.97

5.13

3. Corruption in local self governmental bodies Based on obtained data, it can be concluded that company representatives are familiar with the term corruption and are able to recognize forms of corruptive behavior. Company representatives mostly defined corruption as bribery, or as giving and receiving money. Besides that, the corruption was also defined as abuse of office and acquiring money in illegal manner. Respondents from the northern and central region, to a greater extent, defined corruption as bribery more than in the respondents from the south. Also, in relation to the national average, companies in the southern municipalities in highest percentage did not define what corruption term entitles (Table 13). Table 13:

Definition of corruption (%) Montenegro Centre

Bribery Abuse of office Illegally acquiring money Performing duties in an illegal manner Nepotism Don’t know/No response

40.3 22.4 10.5 6.3 1.5 19.0

61.5 16.2 8.5 0.8 1.5 115

North 51.1 36 3.6 7.9 0.7 0.7

South 33.5 3.6 5.5 5.5 1.8 50.1

The companies assessed the level of corruption on the scale from 1 – no corruption to 10 – corruption highly present at medium level score of 4.44. In comparison with the national average, the respondents from southern municipalities gave considerably higher rates of corruption present in the local self governmental bodies (6.16), (Chart 51). Out of the total number of companies, more than a half assessed the level of corruption present in local self governmental bodies with the scores ranging between one and four, which indicates that the corruption in these bodies is present at lower extent. Company representatives, who assessed the level of corruption with scores ranging between 1 and 3 no corruption, had formed their opinions in 64.4% of cases based on their personal experience. Respondents, who assessed the level of corruption with the scores ranging between 4-10-corruption present, had formed their opinions in 60.6% of cases on the basis of experience/opinions of their friends, relatives, business partners, media, etc. Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment Chart 51:

Average rate of the level of corruption in local self governmental bodies 10 9 8 7

6.16

6 5

4.44

4.68 3.65

4 3 2 1 Montenegro

Centre

North

South

Ranking the answers by sectors in which corruption is the most visible, company representatives citizens singled out those related to facility construction, i.e. the issuing of construction permits (average rate 4.22), building inspections (4.00) and market inspection (3.68). These problems are particularly present in southern municipalities where respondents assessed the level of corruption with average rates higher than national average. On the other hand, they assessed the level of corruption in urbanism department with highest average rate (7.66), (Table 14). In majority of cases, respondents had formed their opinion on the level of corruption in aforementioned bodies the opinion based on the experience of others. Personal experience regarding the existence of corruption at market inspection is present in 39.7% of cases, and in 22.4% of cases at issuing of construction permits. Table 14:

Average rates of the level of corruption in local self governmental bodies Montenegro Centre North

Facility construction/issuing construction permits Construction inspections Market inspection Urbanism Department for issuing work permits Communal police Labor inspection Spatial planning Determining, control and collection of municipal fees and taxes Tax Administration of Montenegro Sanitary inspection Municipal window services

South

4.22 4.00 3.68 3.63 3.60 3.43 3.33 3.26

4.10 4.20 4.62 3.36 4.04 3.52 3.90 3.02

3.36 2.86 2.46 2.79 2.83 2.46 2.44 2.45

6.86 6.72 4.86 7.66 4.72 6.05 4.38 6.23

3.18

3.30

2.40

4.88

2.93 2.66 2.53

3.12 2.78 2.72

2.38 2.16 2.27

4.08 3.96 2.92

According to the companies’ opinion, the most common cause of corruption in local self governmental bodies was poor implementation of the law and regulation and the lack of efficient internal and external control aimed at repressing corruption (24.9% and 24.3% respectively), (Chart 52).

34 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

In the municipalities in the central and southern region, respondents singled out, above the average score, a poor application of the law and regulations as the main cause of corruption (29.1% and 29.2% respectively). Chart 52:

The main cause of corruption in local self governmental bodies (%)

24.9

Poor application of laws and regulations Lack of efficient internal and external controls to repress corruption

24.3

Low salaries for civil servants in local government

18.0

12.7

Lack of transparency in municipal bodies Lack of information available to citizens regarding their rights

9.7

Complex and complicated procedures and regulations

5.5

5.0

Other 0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

Company representatives in 91.8% of cases pointed out that they had not found themselves in the situation to be requested a bribe by local self governmental employees. On the other hand, only 8.3% or 27 companies reported such cases (Chart 53) and in majority of cases it was about different kinds of services dealing with company performance control. The companies in the south had had a greater opportunity to find themselves in a situation where they were being requested to pay a bribe than had the citizens in either the central or northern regions (Chart 54). Chart 53:

Has a local governmental employee requested a bribe from you?

Chart 54: Has a local governmental employee requested a bribe from you (region)? 92.3

100.0

90.9

80.0

8.2

Yes

91.4

60.0 40.0 91.8

No

20.0

7.7

9.1

8.6

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

100.0

North Yes

South No

Out of the total number of respondents who stated that a local self governmental employee had asked them a bribe, 44.4% or 12 companies accepted to respond to this request. On the other hand, 40.8% or 11 companies did not want to answer this question (Chart 55). Observing the results given on a region by region basis, the answer structure was such that none of the companies in southern region accepted Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative 35


2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

to give a bribe In other two regions, companies either accepted to give a bribe (50.0% centre and 58.3% north) or refused to answer in what way they had reacted to this request (50.0% centre and 41.7% north), (Chart 56). Even though the reporting of requests for the bribe is of great importance for the fight against corruption, the companies did not report such requests to the relevant authorities. This particularly refers to the companies from central and southern region, which had not report a single case to the relevant authority. Only in one case, on the north of the country, the employee who asked for a bribe was reported to the principal of the local self governmental body. In this case, the outcome of the complaint was such that the employee was suspended for a while. The most important reason for not reporting the local self governmental employees who requested a bribe were the following: relevant authorities are corrupted (26.9% or 7 companies), authorities in charge would not have done a thing (26.9% or 7 companies). Also, the fear of failing to accomplish the task was, as the main reason, present in every fifth case (19.2% or 5 companies). Companies from the southern region had the opinion that the authorities in charge were corrupted in considerably greater extent than it was the case with the companies from other two regions. Regarding the way that companies reacted when they found themselves in a situation where they were asked for a bribe by local self governmental employee, out of 11 companies that refused to answer this question, none of them reported that employee. As the main reason for not reporting the respondents stated that corruption was present at authorities in charge as well. Chart 55:

How did you react to the request to pay a bribe?

Chart 56:

How did you react to the request to pay a bribe (region)? 80.0

80.0 44.4

Accepted

58.3

60.0

50.0

50.0 41.7

14.8

Refused

40.0 20.0

20.0 40.8

Don't want to answer

0.0

0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

Centre Accepted

North Refused

South Don't want to answer

According to the answers of company representatives, in 80.0% of cases, their companies in did not offered a bribe to local self governmental employees with the purpose of solving the case or providing a service. According to the obtained results, out of the total number of surveyed companies a bribe was offered by 8.5% or 28 companies (Chart 57). Observing the results given on a region by region basis, the answer structure was such that companies from northern and southern municipalities in higher percentage, in relation to national average, had not offered a bribe. On the other hand, companies in the central region more often offered a bribe to an employee in comparison to the other two regions (Chart 58).

36 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

The companies who gave a bribe pointed out that they had given it to the following services: market inspection (36.6%), labor inspection (17.1%) and communal police (14.6). Comparing the answers of the companies who were asked for a bribe by local self governmental employee with the companies who themselves offered a bribe; we have obtained the following results. Out of 27 companies who were requested for a bribe by an employee, six companies had offered the bribe themselves, 12 of them had not done such thing and nine had refused to answer this question. Chart 57: Has your company offered a bribe in order to solve the case for which the employee has already been paid for?

Chart 58: Has your company offered a bribe in order to solve the case for which the employee has already been paid for (region)? 100.0

83.7

85.6

8.5

Yes

76.2

80.0 60.0 80.0

No

40.0 20.0

Don't want to answer

14.6 9.2

11.5

9.4

5.0

12.7 3.6

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

Yes

North No

South Don't want to answer

According to the given results, every fifth company representative (20.8%) sometimes “finished the job” with the help of a friend, relative, or a friend from a local self government. Also, every fourth respondent (27.5%) refused to answer this question (Chart 59). The existence of nepotism is particularly present in the southern and central region. In comparison to the national average, respondents from the northern municipalities used family relationships for “finishing” the job to a much lower extent (Chart 60). Respondents who used their relatives’ or friends’ contacts with local self governmental bodies most often received their documents before time (earlier) or they accelerated the procedure for obtaining work permit. Chart 59:

Have you ever “finished the job using your connections”?

Chart 60:

Have you ever “finished the job using your connections” (region)?

70.0

Yes

61.9

60.0

20.8

40.0 51.7

No

30.0

47.3

44.6

50.0

29.2 23.7

23.6

14.4

20.0

Don't want to answer

29.1

26.2

10.0

27.5

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

Yes

North No

South

Don't want to answer

Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

According to every fifth company (19.25), the most efficient way of fight against corruption would be to introduce more strict internal controls regarding the performance of local self governmental bodies. Also, a significant effect would have public disclosure and legal proceedings of revealed cases of corruption or other illegal behavior. The answers structure by regions is similar and there were no significant discrepancies regarding the best ways of fighting the corruption (Table 15). Table 15:

The best ways of fighting corruption (%) Montenegro

More strict internal controls regarding the performance of local self governmental bodies Public disclosure of legal proceedings concerning solved cases of corruption and other illegal behavior Introducing more strict sanctions More specific legal regulations in this area Simplifying procedures and shortening timescales to obtain permits, decisions, receipts, etc Providing higher salaries for employees Campaign aimed at raising the level of awareness of employees in local governmental bodies regarding the adversity of corruption Campaign aimed at raising the level of awareness of companies on the adversity of corruption More transparent work of local government bodies Other

Centre

North

South

19.2

18.4

20.6

19.0

16.8

18.4

17.2

15.1

13.7 11.6

11.0 12.2

15.9 11.2

14.3 9.5

10.0

6.7

12.4

11.9

9.7

13.3

4.7

10.3

7.0

7.1

8.2

5.6

5.9

7.1

5.2

5.6

5.4 0.8

5.1 0.8

4.3 0.4

7.9 0.8

Corruption is a negative phenomenon and it does not affect only particular society structures, according to the four fifths of company representatives (80.2%), (Chart 61). Answers structure by regions shows that this opinion was particularly present at companies from the south of the country in relation to the national average (Chart 62). Chart 61: Who does corruption in local self governmental bodies harm the most?

Chart 62: Who does corruption in local self governmental bodies harm the most (region)? 92.5

100.0 80.2

Everybody

77.7

77.5

80.0 15.9

Companies

60.0 40.0

2.1

Civil servants

20.0

3.1

1.8

Other

20.1

15.5

7.5

3.9

1.4

0.7

0.0 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

Centre Everybody

North Companies

South

Civil servants

Other

Companies most often thought that elected representatives/local parliament members can contribute to the fight against corruption (Chart 63). The trust in their contribution, when compared to the national average, the companies from northern municipalities had higher trust in their contribution (Chart 64). 38 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

The best ways of their contribution respondents saw in the following: better commitment to performing their regular duties, conducting more strict internal controls, public disclosure and legal proceedings of revealed cases, implementing media campaign aimed at fighting the corruption as well as introducing more severe sanctions. Chart 63: Can elected representatives contribute to the fight against corruption?

Chart 64: Can elected representatives contribute to the fight against corruption (region)? 76.3

80.0 63.6

64.6

69.8

Yes

60.0 40.0

26.3

No

30.0

29.1 22.3

20.0 5.4

7.3

3.9

Don't know

1.4

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

North

Yes

No

South Don't know

Companies assessed differently the level of corruption in other public services. According to the research results, on the scale from 1 – no corruption to 10 – corruption highly present, the health care was assessed as being the most corrupted (average rate 4.22) and police (average rate 4.02). Observing the answer structure by regions, it showed that company representatives from the southern region assessed with higher indicator values the level of corruption in comparison to the other two regions. Companies in southern municipalities assessed the level of corruption in health care with average score of 6.24 and in police with 5.49. Also, companies from southern municipalities assessed the corruption present in cadastre with average score of 6.62, which is significantly above the national average (3.60), (Table 16). Companies most often had formed their opinions on existence of corruption based on their own personal experience. However, every fifth respondent formed his/her opinion regarding the level of corruption in health care and police based on his/her own personal experience (27.6% and 24.10 respectively). Regarding the cadastre service, companies in 18.0% of cases had formed their opinion based on their personal experience. Table 16:

The level of corruption in other public services Montenegro Centre

Health Care Police Cadastre (Land Registry) Electro distribution Education system Utility services Tax Administration of Montenegro – district unit in your municipality Media Waterworks Civil sector (NGO)

North

South

4.22 4.02 3.60 3.41 3.10 2.92

4.04 3.79 3.08 3.64 2.94 3.00

3.78 3.80 3.07 2.72 2.91 2.35

6.24 5.49 6.62 5.06 4.37 4.66

2.91

2.88

2.54

4.15

2.73 2.57 2.20

2.98 2.34 2.31

2.40 2.21 2.06

3.26 4.35 2.53

Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

4. Promptness of the local self governmental bodies Company representatives had been offered the possibility to assess the level of promptness in the local self governmental bodies. According to them, on the scale from 1 – no promptness to 10 – promptness extremely present, the least prompt was service for issuing construction permits (4.52), spatial planning (4.64) and urbanism (4.67). Observing the given assessments by regions, in relation to the national average, these services were the worst rated by the companies from the central region. According to the rates of the companies from all three regions, the highest level of promptness was present at market inspection (6.78), labor inspection (6.73) and sanitary inspection (6.70), (Table 17). Table 17:

The level of promptness in local self governmental bodies Montenegro Centre

Market inspection - district unit in your municipality Labor inspection - district unit in your municipality Sanitary inspection - district unit in your municipality Tax Administration of Montenegro–district unit in your municipality Municipal window services Determining, control and collection of municipal fees and taxes Communal police Department for issuing work permits Local officials Construction inspections Urbanism Spatial planning Facility construction/issuing construction permits

North

South

6.78 6.73 6.70

6.96 6.84 7.11

7.14 7.00 6.71

5.72 5.87 6.10

6.66

6.90

6.54

6.26

6.54 6.23 5.99 5.90 5.71 5.27 4.67 4.64 4.52

6.81 6.86 6.60 6.22 6.03 5.94 5.67 5.77 4.96

6.41 5.97 6.00 6.14 5.92 5.55 4.80 4.83 4.99

6.15 5.27 4.20 4.44 4.53 3.50 3.34 3.40 3.00

During this last year, on request for information or service delivery, companies in 14.8% of cases had received an answer from the local governmental body outside the period prescribed by law (Chart 65). In relation to the national average, these delays were the most significant in southern municipalities, 30.9% (Chart 66). The local self governmental bodies, which took longer time to respond to the request than it was planned, were the department for issuing work permits (28.9%) and urbanism (15.9%). Chart 65: Did you receive an answer to your request outside the period of time prescribed by the law during this last year?

Chart 66: Did you receive an answer to your request outside the period of time prescribed by the law during this last year (region)? 92.3

100.0

69.1

80.0

14.8

Yes

87.8

60.0 30.9

40.0 85.2

No

20.0

12.2 7.7

0.0

Centre 0.0

10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0 60.0 70.0 80.0 90.0

40 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

North Yes

South No


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

During this last year, 12.6% or 41 companies had experienced negative consequences as a result of errors in the performance of local government employees (Chart 67). In relation to the central and northern regions, companies from southern municipalities had to a greater extent experienced negative consequences because of these errors (Chart 68). Chart 67: Have you experienced any negative consequences due to errors made by local self governmental employees during this last year?

Chart 68: Have you experienced any negative consequences due to errors made by local self governmental employees during this last year (region)? 93.8

100.0

73.6

80.0

12.6

Yes

86.3

60.0 40.0 87.4

No

20.0

26.4 13.7 6.3

0.0

Centre 0.0

North

10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0 60.0 70.0 80.0 90.0

South

Yes

No

Due to these errors in local self governmental employees, 56.1% or 23 companies filed complaints to authorities in charge (Chart 69). Companies from the north had filed the highest number of complaints in comparison with the national average (Chart 70). Companies who did not file complaints, as most important reason for not doing so stated that they would not achieve anything anyway. Chart 69:

Have you filed a complaint regarding an error made by an employee?

Chart 70: Have you filed a complaint regarding an error made by an employee (region)? 68.4 62.5

70.0

56.1 56.1

Yes

60.0 50.0

43.9 37.5 31.6

40.0 30.0 20.0

43.9

No

10.0 0.0 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

Centre

North Yes

South No

For the purpose of overcoming the problem of the lack of promptness in the work of local self governmental bodies, company representatives suggested the following: simplifying the procedures and shortening the time for obtaining permits, decisions, certificates, etc. (22.2%) and more strict internal control of the local self government performance (19.3%). The companies from the northern Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

41


2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

region suggested these measures in the higher percentage in comparison to the other two regions (Table 18). Table 18:

Ways of overcoming a lack of promptness in local self governmental bodies (%) Montenegro Centre North

Simplifying procedures and shortening timescales to obtain permits, decisions, receipts, etc More strict internal controls regarding the performance of local self governmental bodies Introducing more strict sanctions More specific legal regulations in this area (scope of activities and time frame) Providing higher salaries for employees Campaign and education aimed at raising the level of knowledge of companies’ rights More transparent work of local government bodies Other

South

22.2

20.7

25.7

18.8

19.3

15.5

22.8

20.8

12.8

12.2

12.4

14.6

12.4

13.6

11.9

9.4

12.0

20.2

5.9

7.3

10.8

8.0

11.4

15.6

9.1

8.9

7.4

13.5

1.4

0.9

2.5

-

5. Service accessibility of local government bodies Majority of company representatives regarded the service prices, prices charged for issuing permits and amount of fees charged by local government services as high (Chart 71). The companies from the northern region in higher percentage regarded these services as high than it was the case with the companies based in southern and central region. Something more than two thirds of the companies (68.6%) emphasized that the quality of services provided by local government bodies was not in accordance with the prices they charged (Chart 72). This opinion was strongly upheld by respondents from the southern (74.1) and northern region (68.8%) than by respondents in the northern region (65.9%). Chart 71:

Service prices

1.2

The level of fees charged by local government bodies

29.4

Chart 72: Is the level of fees charged for providing services in accordance with their quality?

69.4

31.4

Yes Permit prices

1.2

29.1

69.6

Fee amount

3.1

25.2

71.7

0.0

20.0

Low

40.0

Real

60.0

68.6

No 80.0

100.0

High

0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

60.0

70.0

During the last year, for 46.6% of companies included in this research, the total amount of payments paid to the local self government amounted more than €500. On the other hand, every fifth company (20.4%) had incurred costs between €251 and €500 (Chart 73). The level of costs incurred which

42 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

totaled above €500 was most present in the south and the north of the country in comparison to the companies in the central region (Chart 74). Chart 73: The total amount of payments made to local self governmental bodies?

70.0

1.9

Up to €10

Chart 74: The total amount of payments made to local self governmental bodies (region)? 64.8

60.0

€11 - €50

40.0

12.7

€51 – €100

52.2

50.0

5.2

30.4

30.0 13.3

€101 – €250

20.0 10.0

20.4

€251 – €500

26.1

21.6 17.6 17.6 12.0 8.0

11.113.0

10.9 5.6

5.6

1.4 1.4

0.8

0.0 46.6

More than €500 0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

Centre

50.0

North

South

Up to €10

€11 - €50

€51 – €100

€101 – €250

€251 – €500

More than €500

The services provided by the local self government bodies, bearing in mind the price they charge, for the half of the companies (49.7%) were accessible (Chart 75). Service accessibility, according to the results on a region by region basis was more present at companies based in the central region. On the other hand, services were least accessible to the companies in northern municipalities (26.6%). General assessment of accessibility of local self governmental bodies and employees was positive. Namely, 38.6% of companies stated that the bodies and employees were often accessible (Chart 76). Results on region by region basis showed that often accessibility singles out at companies from the northern region (45.3%). At companies from the south of the country accessibility of bodies and employees was most often sometimes present (45.5%). In every second case, companies received the requested information from competent authorities and local government bodies in an easy way (Chart 77). This was particularly characteristic for companies from central municipalities (58.1%) in comparison with national average. On the other hand, the companies from south did not obtain information easily.10 Chart 75:

Service accessibility of local self governmental bodies? 6.7

Very accessible

49.7

34.5

Accessible to some extent

0.0

10.0

31.6

38.6

Often

2.4

Very inaccessible

7.0

Rarely Sometimes

6.7

Inaccessible

0.9

Never

Accessible

10

Chart 76: Accessibility of local self governmental bodies and employees?

21.9

Always 20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

“Very hard” + “Hard” + “Partially hard” = 7.5% + 45.3% + 30.2% = 83.0%

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2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment Chart 77:

Obtaining information from competent authorities in local self government 1.8

Very hard

7.6

Hard

34.1

Partially hard

49.1

Easy 7.3

Very easy 0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

Companies assessed the complex and complicated procedures in local self governmental bodies with different indicator values. According to their opinion, on the scale from 1 – not complicated to 10 – very complicated, the most highly complex procedure was identified at issuing construction permits (6.26). Observing the answer structure by regions, it is noticeable that the companies on the south rated the complexity of procedures with considerably higher average scores in aforementioned departments (Table 19). Table 19:

The average rates of the complexity of procedures in local self governmental bodies Montenegro Centre North South

Facility construction/issuing construction permits Urbanism Department for issuing work permits Spatial planning Construction inspections Communal police Determining, control and collection of municipal fees and taxes Market inspection - district unit in your municipality Labor inspection - district unit in your municipality Sanitary inspection - district unit in your municipality Tax Administration of Montenegro–district unit in your municipality Municipal window services

6.26 5.79 5.48 5.47 5.33 4.26 4.15

5.62 4.59 5.95 5.10 4.18 3.55 3.85

5.85 5.09 4.83 5.16 5.26 4.27 4.18

7.50 7.33 6.05 6.59 6.76 6.18 4.95

3.85 3.82 3.76 3.48

3.73 3.69 3.75 3.50

3.79 3.71 3.71 3.50

4.18 4.05 3.87 3.48

3.40

3.82

3.28

2.96

6. Attitude of local self governmental employees and business environment According to the companies, the behavior of local self governmental employees toward companies was assessed as normal (47.9%), (Chart 78). According to the research results, companies from the north in percentage higher than national average assessed this relation as normal (53.2%). However, the behavior of employees towards companies was most positively assessed by companies from the central region.11 During the last year, 17.2% or 57 companies experienced an unpleasant situation involving the local self governmental employee, and every fifth, 21.8% or 72 companies witnessed unpleasant behavior 11

“Good” + “Excellent” = 24.8% + 17.1% = 41.9%

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

by employee towards company representatives (Chart 79 and Chart 80). In comparison with the respondents from other two regions, companies, respondents from the southern municipalities both experienced and witnessed the unpleasant behavior of local self governmental employees towards companies more often, (21.8% and 32.7% respectively). Out of 57 companies which experienced an unpleasant situation with local self government employees, only 28.1% or 16 companies filed a complaint to the relevant authorities. According to given results, companies from the south region had reported no such cases to the authorities in charge. The main reason for not reporting unpleasant behavior to the relevant authorities was the lack of trust into relevant institutions, i.e. the authorities in charge would not do a thing (45.5%0, which, in comparison to the national average, was the most reason for the companies from the southern region (61.5%). Chart 78: Assessment of attitude of local self government employees towards company representative?

Chart 79: Have you experienced an unpleasant situation with local self government employees?

3.0

Extreemly unsatisfying

17.2

Yes

14.8

Unsatisfying

47.9

Normal 26.1

Good

82.8

No 8.2

Excellent 0.0

Chart 80:

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

0.0

10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0 60.0 70.0 80.0 90.0

Have you witnessed any unpleasant behavior by local self government employee towards company representative?

21.8

Yes

78.2

No

0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

When asked to compare the current situation with the situation over the last two years, company representatives stated that during the observed period, an improvement had been achieved. The value of indicator measuring the level of this improvement amounted 6.16, on the scale from 1 – drastically aggravated to 10- drastically improved. Based on given results, the differences between the regions are noticeable. Namely, companies based in the central region assessed this relationship more Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

positively with average score of 6.67 than the respondents from the south where the rate was the lowest 4.85 in comparison with the national average (Chart 81). Chart 81:

Average scores regarding the attitude of local self governmental employees towards company representatives over the last two years 10 9 8 6.67

7

6.21

6.16

6

4.85

5 4 3 2 1 Montenegro

Centre

North

South

More than a half of interviewed company representatives thought that the business environment in the municipality was very little business-oriented (Chart 82). This opinion is particularly dominant, in comparison with national average, at companies from central and northern region (56.6% and 55.1% respectively). Company representatives have divided opinion regarding the treatment and applied rules for all companies. Namely, 51.1% of companies believed that all companies had no equal treatment and that the same rules were not applied to everyone (Chart 83). This opinion is the most present at company representatives from southern region (61.8%) in comparison with the other two regions. As the most important reason for unequal treatment and rules for all, company representatives stated friendly and relative connections, due to which certain companies are in favorable position in relation to others. Chart 82: To what extent the business environment in municipality is businessoriented? Not at all

Chart 83: Do all companies have equal treatment and does the same rules are applied to everyone?

5.5 47.4

Yes 16.4

Very little

54.1

Little

51.1

No

19.5

A lot Very much 0.0

1.5

Don't know

4.6

20.0

40.0

60.0

0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

According to 54.7% of company representatives, the existing laws and regulations on the local level create positive conditions for business (Chart 84). This opinion is above national average in central 46 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

2009

and southern municipalities (60.8% and 56.1% respectively), while at companies from the southern municipalities prevailed opinion that local laws did not create positive conditions for business development (47.3%). Companies which believed that local laws and regulations did not create positive conditions for business development, as the most important reason stated complexity of laws and regulation, their lack of adjustment to the company’s needs and high prices and fees charged by local self governments. Rules and procedures prescribed for obtaining the licenses, according to the majority of company representatives or 62.2%, were easy to understand and fulfill (Chart 85). For 28.1% of companies these procedures were not clear enough and in majority of cases complicated. These procedures are the least clear and easy to understand for companies based in the south of the country. Chart 84: Do the current laws and regulations on le local level create positive business conditions?

Chart 85:

54.7

Yes

0.0

28.1

No

4.5

Don't know

62.2

Yes

40.8

No

Are the rules and procedures easy to understand and fill out?

9.7

Don't know

20.0

40.0

0.0

60.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

60.0

70.0

For almost every third company (29.0%), high fees and taxes represented the major obstacle for company’s growth and development. Answers structure by regions is similar, with regard that companies from the southern region, apart from this obstacle, singled out complicated procedures as well (Table 20). Table 20:

The major obstacles for company growth and development (%) Montenegro Centre North South

High fees and taxes

29.0

25.0

31.9

29.9

Administrative burden

13.9

15.9

13.9

11.2

Complicated procedures

13.8

15.2

10.1

16.8

Inspections

12.5

14.4

11.3

11.2

Corruption

10.4

10.6

8.8

13.1

Changes in legal environment

6.9

6.1

7.1

7.5

Law on labor

5.8

6.4

5.9

4.7

Infrastructure

5.6

3.0

9.2

4.7

Other

2.2

3.4

1.7

0.9

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5. LOCAL SELF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

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1. Demographic characteristics of local self government employees The sample included 381 local self government employees. The gender structure of people employed in local government bodies is present at approximately the same percentage - 51.5% of women against 48.5% of men. The respondents were of the age from 41 to 50 and between 31 and 40 (37.0% and 27.9% respectively), while the average age of employees amounted 41. Two fifths of respondents (40.5%) had high level of education. Monthly revenues of households employed in local government bodies ranged between €451 to €600 and more than €800 (30.1% and 28.0% respectively). The members of the household of employees most often count four people (37.2%). In 57.9% of households two people were earning money, 47.6% had one child under 18 and 82.0% one retired person.

2. Use of and service quality of local self governmental bodies In local government bodies half of the interviewed people (51.1%) most often held the clerk position and in far lower percentage were professional associates (15.7%) and window clerks (14.9%). The nature of daily work of employees in local self governmental bodies implies the work with parties and on average they have contact with them several times a day (Chart 86). More detailed insight into answer structure by regions showed that employees in central, in comparison with employees in southern and northern region, have contact with parties several times a day and several times a week (Chart 87). Chart 86:

How often, on average, do you have contact with parties?

Chart 87:

How often, on average, do you have contact with parties (region)? 77.1

80.0

72.1

68.3

Several times a day

60.0 25.9

Several times a week

40.0

55.2

36.8 22.8

Once a week

18.6

3.8

20.0 3.4

Other

4.6

4.4

0.7

2.9

1.4

0.0

2.0

Centre 0.0 10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0 60.0 70.0

North

Several times a day Once a week

South Several times a week Other

The quality of work carried out by local self governmental employees, on the scale ranging from 1-very poor quality to 10-very high quality, was assessed by employees with an average score of 7.17. Quality assessment is positive, since 78.4% of employees assessed the quality with the score six and more than six. Employees in the central region assessed the quality of work of local self governmental bodies with rates higher than national average (Table 21). Table 21:

Average level of performance quality demonstrated by local self governmental employees Average level Montenegro Centre North South

7.17 7.94 6.90 6.72

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In terms of opportunities to improve the performance quality of local self governmental employees, employees have positive expectations. Namely, four out of five respondents thought that the quality of their work could be improved significantly (Chart 88). Optimism, in terms of the way this segment of local self governmental bodies functions is particularly present with employees from southern region The optimism in this segment of local government functioning is particularly present at employees in southern region, whilst this optimism is the least expressed by citizens from northern region (Chart 89). Chart 88: Can the performance quality of local governmental bodies be significantly improved?

Chart 89: Can the performance quality of local governmental bodies be significantly improved (region)? 87.0

90.0 79.9

Yes

80.2 76.1

80.0 70.0 60.0 50.0

6.5

No

40.0 30.0

16.3

20.0 10.0

13.6

Don't know

15.2 8.7

3.5

5.8

7.2

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

North

Yes

No

South Don't know

Employees recognized the following as the most important ways of quality improvement in the work of local government bodies: simplifying the procedures to obtain permits, decisions, certificates (23.6%) and providing better salaries (23.2%). Employees in the southern municipalities believed that the greatest improvements could be achieved by simplifying the procedures, while employees in the north believed that improvements could be achieved by providing better salaries for employees (Table 22). Table 22:

In what ways can the performance quality of local self governmental bodies be improved? (%) Montenegro Centre North South

Simplification of procedures for obtaining permits, regulations and confirmations Providing better salaries for civil servants

23.6

23.7

20.5

28.9

23.2

25.8

22.3

20.7

16.9

13.2

19.1

19.0

14.1

16.3

14.0

10.7

11.8

12.1

13.5

8.3

Introduction of more strict punitive measures

8.2

7.4

8.4

9.1

Other

2.2

1.6

2.3

3.3

More strict internal control regarding the performance of local self governmental bodies More precise legal regulations (scope activities and time frame) More transparent work of Local Government bodies

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Despite positive assessment of the quality of their own work, three fifths of employees (59.1%) stated that there were errors in the performance of local self governmental bodies. This opinion is above national average present at employees from southern municipalities (72.8%). According to the opinions of employees, on the scale ranging from 1- not at all present to 10extremely present, the most negative manifestations present in the performance of local self governmental bodies were the complex and complicated procedures to obtain permits, decisions, receipts with average score rate of 6.31 (Chart 90). The other negative manifestations were assessed with the average scores below four, which means that they were to lower extent present in the work of local self governmental bodies. Chart 90: Average scores for the following negative manifestations

6.31

3.39

3.96

3.37

Lack of transparency

Bad attitude of employees towards parties

Complex and complicated procedures and regulations

Lack of promptness

2.81

Corruption

10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0

Comparing the data on a region by region basis, employees from the central region, in majority of cases, assessed that there was a higher level of negative manifestations present in local self governments than did respondents in other two regions. In comparison to the national average, employees in the southern region see the biggest problem in the lack of transparency of local self government work (Table 23). Table 23:

Average scores for the following negative manifestations Montenegro Centre North

Complex and complicated procedures and regulations Lack of promptness Corruption Lack of transparency Bad attitude of employees towards parties

6.31 3.96 3.39 3.37 2.81

6.52 4.86 3.52 3.66 3.07

South

6.30 2.70 3.28 1.83 1.00

Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

5.00 3.15 3.33 7.00 5.20

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

3. Corruption in local self governmental bodies Every second employee (52.1%) in local self governmental bodies defined corruption as bribery, and every fourth (24.1%) as abuse of office. The respondents from the central and northern region defined corruption as bribery to greater extent than it was the case with respondents in southern region (Table 24). Table 24:

Definition of corruption (%) Montenegro Centre

Bribery Abuse of office Performing duties in an illegal manner Illegally acquiring money Nepotism Other Don’t know/No response

52.1 24.1 6.5 1.8 0.3 3.4 11.8

57.6 22.0 6.8 3.0 3.0 7.6

North 53.0 25.6 7.2 1.8 2.4 10.0

South 40.7 24.7 4.9 1.2 6.2 22.3

Employees assessed the the level of corruption, on the scale ranging from 1 – no corruption to 10corruption highly present, with the average score of 3.06. The opinion of employees on the level of corruption was highest on the south, while in the central part it was the lowest (Chart 91). Out of the total number of surveyed employees, three fifths (59.6%) assessed the presence of corruption with the rates from 1 to 3, which shows that, according to their opinion; the corruption is present to a lower extent. Chart 91:

Average rate of the level of corruption in local self governmental bodies 10 9 8 7 6 5 4

3.96 3.06

3

2.80

2.87

2 1 0 Montenegro

Centre

North

South

According to the every third employee (34.6%), the most common cause of corruption in local self governmental bodies was their low wages. On the other hand, for every fifth respondent respectively, poor application of laws and regulations (21.2%) and the lack of efficient internal and external control aimed at repression of corruption were the most common causes of corruption (Chart 92). In comparison to national average, respondents from the north of the country singled out the low salaries of employees as the main cause (36.5%).

52 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment Chart 92:

2009

The main causes of corruption in local self governmental bodies (%)

Low salaries for civil servants in local government

34.6 21.2

Poor application of laws and regulations Lack of efficient internal and external controls to repress corruption

19.0

Complex and complicated procedures and regulations

7.8

5.4

Lack of transparency in municipal bodies Lack of information available to citizens regarding their rights

2.1 8.3

Other 1.6

Don’t know/No answer

0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

During the last year, local self government employees most often were not in the situation to witness that some of their colleagues were offered a bribe or illegal payment. However, 6.3% or 24 employees reported such cases (Chart 93). According to given results, employees from the south in higher percentage in comparison with the national average, reported the existence of such cases (Chart 94). Employees learned about such cases mostly from their colleagues (63.6%), while 13.6% or three employees had personal experience, i.e. there were personally offered the bribe. Chart 93:

Have any of your colleagues being offered a bribe?

Chart 94:

85.6

90.0

74.4

80.0

6.3

Yes

Have any of your colleagues being offered a bribe (region)?

70.0

60.5

60.0 75.3

No

50.0 40.0

27.2

30.0

21.4 12.3

20.0

Don't want to answer

10.0

18.4

5.3

9.1

4.2

0.0

Centre 0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

Yes

North No

South

Don't want to answer

Colleagues of employees in local self governmental bodies most often refuse to receive the offered bribe (41.7%). On the other hand, 29.2% respectively or 7 employees accepted the bribe or refused to answer on this question (Chart 95). Answer structure by regions is such that respondents from the central region in equal percentage accepted and refused the offered bribe, whilst those in southern municipalities most often refused the offered bribe (Chart 96). Out of total number of employees who stated that they were offered a bribe, in 66.7% or in six cases this was not reported to the authorities in charge. Only in three cases offering a bribe was reported to Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

the principal of local self government. Out of reported cases, two are still pending, and in one the complaint was declared unfounded. For employees who stated that the case of bribery was not reported, the most important for not reporting this case was to avoid involvement in the legal proceedings. Colleagues who accepted a bribe/illegal payment (seven in total) in the last 12 months had helped the parties to accelerate procedures to obtain documents (permits, decisions, receipts), as well as to have better treatment in relation to other parties. Chart 95: How did you react in case your colleagues were offered a bribe?

Chart 96: How did you react in case your colleagues were offered a bribe (region)? 50.0

Accepted

42.9

42.9

42.9

42.9 40.0

29.2

40.0 30.0

30.0

30.0 41.7

Refused

20.0

14.3

14.3

10.0

Don't want to answer

29.2

0.0 Centre

0.0 10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0

Accepted

North Refused

South Don't want to answer

According to the opinion of 78.7% of employees, their colleagues had never asked for a bribe from a party in exchange for providing the service which was in their job description (Chart 97). Answers structure by regions was such that respondents from southern municipalities in higher percentage did not want to answer this question in comparison to the national average (Chart 98). Employees who stated that some of their colleagues had asked for a bribe from a party in 38.5% heard about it from their other colleagues. Also, almost every third employee (30.8%) personally witnessed when the request was made. In case of requesting a bribe from the party, in 53.8% or 7 cases the party accepted this request, i.e. gave a bribe to an employee. In two cases (15.4%) the offer was refused, and four employees (30.8%) refused to answer this question. Giving a bribe to employees, who requested it from parties, was in higher percentage present in the central and northern region in comparison with national average. If some party would offer a bribe/illegal payment, employees in 87.3% of cases would have refused such offer, whilst every tenth employee or 9.2% does not know what they would do in such situation.

54 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment Chart 97:

Have any of your colleagues asked for a bribe from a party?

2009

Chart 98: Have any of your colleagues asked for a bribe from a party (region)? 86.4

76.8

80.0

69.6

3.5

Yes

60.0

78.7

No

40.0

26.6 19.5

20.0

10.6

3.7

3.0

17.9

Don't want to answer

3.8

0.0 Centre

0.0

20.0

40.0

60.0

80.0

Yes

North No

South Don't want to answer

Employees in local self governmental bodies emphasized the significance and importance of implementing the measures as a way of fighting corruption. According to their opinion, the most efficient ways of fighting the corruption were the following: more strict internal control, providing better salaries for employees, public disclosure and starting legal proceedings of discovered cases of corruption or illegal behavior (Table 25). Table 25:

The best ways of fighting corruption (%) Montenegro

Centre

North

South

More strict internal controls regarding the performance of local self governmental bodies Providing higher salaries for employees

17.3

16.3

18.4

17.2

16.0

16.3

17.2

13.8

Public disclosure of legal proceedings concerning solved cases of corruption and other illegal behavior Introducing more strict sanctions

14.2

15.6

13.6

13.2

13.5

11.3

16.4

12.6

More specific legal regulations in this area

10.3

13.2

8.4

8.6

Campaign aimed at raising the level of awareness of parties on the adversity of corruption Campaign aimed at raising the level of awareness of employees in local governmental bodies regarding the adversity of corruption Simplifying procedures and shortening timescales to obtain permits, decisions, receipts, etc More transparent work of local government bodies

9.8

8.9

9.6

11.5

7.6

7.8

6.8

8.6

6.7

5.4

5.2

10.9

4.0

4.3

4.0

2.9

Other

0.6

0.8

0.4

0.6

According to four fifths or 80.5% of employees, corruption in local self governmental bodies harms everyone. For that reason, the elected representatives and local government members can contribute to a great extent to the fight against corruption (75.0%). Respondents saw the best ways for them to contribute in introducing more strict sanctions, more specific laws and public disclosure of discovered cases. Employees in local government bodies assessed differently the levels of corruption in other public services. According to their opinion, on the scale ranging from 1 – no corruption to 10 – corruption highly present, health care was assessed as being the most corrupt (average rate 4.71) closely followed Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative 55


2009

Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment

by the police (average rate 4.62), (Table 26). According to the research results, employees in southern municipalities assessed the level of corruption present in aforementioned public services with higher rates than national average. Their opinion regarding the level of corruption to great extent was affected by stories and experience of others and increasing headlines in electronic and printed media on arrests of individuals employed in local self governments due to reasonable doubt that they had committed corruptive acts and abuse of office than by personal experience. Table 26:

The average rates of the level of corruption in the following public services Montenegro Centre North South

Health Care Police Cadastre (Land Registry) Education system Electro distribution Media Tax Administration of Montenegro Utility services Waterworks Civil sector (NGO)

4.71 4.62 4.07 3.83 3.73 3.22 3.09 2.98 2.73 2.66

5.06 4.43 3.61 3.83 3.43 2.98 2.65 2.58 2.20 2.56

4.15 4.57 3.79 3.70 3.97 3.43 3.30 3.18 2.84 2.80

5.33 5.16 5.65 4.17 3.77 3.22 3.48 3.32 3.55 2.53

4. Promptness of local governmental bodies During this last year, following requests for information or service delivery, almost every third party (29.9%) had received the response from the local government bodies in the period longer than it was defined by law. The most often mentioned local self governmental services which took longer time to respond on requests were urbanism (20.0%) and department for facility construction/issuing construction permits (18.5%). Owing to these errors in the work of employees working in local self governmental bodies, 57.1% of parties filed a complaint to the authorities in charge. These complaints were to a greater extent present in southern regions (64.4%) in relation to the national average. For the purpose of overcoming the problem of the lack of promptness of local self government performance, employees suggested the simplifying the procedures and shortening the time to obtain permits, decisions, receipts, etc. (20.4%), providing higher salaries (18.8%) and more strict internal control of the local self government performance (16.1%). According to the research results, there were no major discrepancies in the answers of respondents in comparison with the national level (Table 27).

56 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment Table 27:

2009

Ways of overcoming a lack of promptness in local self governmental bodies (%) Montenegro Centre North

Simplifying procedures and shortening timescales to obtain permits, decisions, receipts, etc Providing higher salaries for employees

South

20.4

21.4

18.8

19.2

18.8

17.9

19.3

20.5

16.1

14.7

17.4

17.1

13.7

17.9

8.7

15.1

11.8

8.5

17.4

9.6

More transparent work of local government bodies

9.2

12.5

10.1

6.8

Campaign and education aimed at raising the level of knowledge of parties’ rights Other

8.7

6.7

7.2

11.6

1.2

0.4

1.0

-

More strict internal controls regarding the performance of local self governmental bodies More specific legal regulations in this area (scope of activities and time frame) Introducing more strict sanctions

5. Service accessibility of local self governmental bodies According to the opinion of 45.2% of employees, services of local government bodies were accessible to the parties having in mind the service prices charged by local government bodies (Chart 99). Also, every second party obtained requested information from relevant local government bodies in a quite easy way (Chart 100). Easy obtaining necessary information from authorities in charge is particularly expressed on the north of the country, in comparison with the national average. The given results indicate on service and information accessibility to the local self government service users. Chart 99:

Service accessibility of local self governmental bodies? 23.3

Very accessible

45.2

25.9

4.1

Hard

22.7

Partially hard

4.8

Inaccessible

0.8

Very hard

Accessible Accessible to some extent

Chart 100: Information accessibility of local self governmental bodies?

53.2

Easy

0.8

Very inaccessible

19.1

Very easy 0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

0.0

10.0

20.0

30.0

40.0

50.0

60.0

6. Attitude of local government employees toward parties According to the opinion of employees, the attitude of clerks in local government bodies towards parties was assessed as normal and good (39.4% and 36.55 respectively). Respondents from the south of the country assessed this behavior as normal in higher percentage in comparison with the national average (51.9%). Also, when asked to compare the attitude of employees towards parties, on the scale ranging from 1 – drastically aggravated to 10 – significantly improved, employees were of the opinion that in the last two years a significant progress has been achieved – indicator value 7.25. The employees in southern municipalities assessed this progress with the lowest rate 6.48 and those from central region with the highest rate 7.92 in comparison with the national average. Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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Even though they indicated that the relationship between employees in local government bodies and parties has been improved, there was still space for additional improvement in the following period. In every fifth case (19.3%) employees witnessed unpleasant behavior by employee towards parties, and two fifths of parties (40.8%) had filed a complaint due that behavior. On the other hand, almost every second employee (47.4%) stated that he/she experienced unpleasant situation from parties upon performing regular daily duties. In comparison with the national average, employees in southern region in higher percentage had witnessed unpleasant behavior by local self government employees towards parties (25.95), and also they had experienced higher number of unpleasant situations from parties as well (53.8%). Employees mostly agreed on the fact that the behavior and attitude of parties toward employees in local government bodies was on the average level (45.3%). On the other hand, interpersonal relations and relations among colleagues in local government body were assessed as good (40.8%) and average (38.9%). For employees in northern municipalities these relationships were above national average assessed as good (47.0%), whilst in southern municipalities they were assessed as average (48.8%). This indicates to the fact that it is necessary to mutually improve relationship between employees and parties as well as relationship between colleagues. The employees have positive expectations regarding the improvement of relationship with the parties, but, however, they expect better improvement in behavior of parties toward them as employees in local self governmental bodies (Chart 101 and Chart 102). Optimism in terms of improvement of this behavior of parties towards employees was to greater extent present in the central (75.8%) and southern region (75.3%). In northern municipalities there was greater optimism regarding the improvement of behavior of colleagues towards parties (70.8%). Chart 101: Is it possible to improve your attitude and attitude of your colleagues towards parties?

No Attitude of your colleaques

66.0

11.4

20.0

Yes

40.0

No

60.0

80.0

3.9

22.6

Don't know 0.0

73.8

Yes

30.1

69.9

Your attitude

Chart 102: Is it possible to improve attitude of parties towards employees?

22.3

100.0

Don't know

0.0 10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 50.0 60.0 70.0 80.0

The work of local self governmental bodies, according to the opinion of three fifths of employees (59.8%), was assessed positive by public. The main reasons for such public opinion, according to the employees, in every third case (30.0%) were based on the facts, and in every fourth case (23.4%) on what had been done so far.

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6. NON GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATION

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1. Service use of local governmental bodies The most common form of cooperation between NGOs and local government bodies has been through joint activities aimed at implementing specific programs. Respondents gave the following as the most significant reasons for communicating with local governmental bodies: raising awareness regarding problems faced by citizens on a daily basis, participation in public debates, workshops, platforms, applying for funds offered by municipalities, and also implementing projects after funds have been approved. The aforementioned activities have been carried out through areas of NATO integration, the arts, disability projects etc. Where the work of local governmental bodies is concerned, respondents’ opinions vary. One third of respondents characterized the work of local governmental bodies as being inefficient in terms of the speed of solving concrete issues, the implementation of the same and also regarding the dissemination of information. About 20% of respondents assessed the work done as being both good and solid, whilst the same percentage emphasized that the work was insufficient and lacked quality and transparency and that it also significantly depended on personal contacts within local governmental bodies. „Certain local governmental bodies, especially when it comes to affairs which are of particular interest to citizens, are inefficient. There are many reasons for this, such as: untried and unsuitable solutions to significant system issues; bad work and poor management organization; a lack of accountability and stimulation. “ According to respondents, the quality of work of local governmental bodies can be improved by introducing a series of measures. Amongst the most significant are: the establishment of effective and efficient control mechanisms, increasing the level of awareness of government officials, civil servants, workers in NGOs, improving promptness, professionalism and accountability, and by ensuring greater transparency in work carried out, as well as becoming more involved with the work of NGOs and by using their specific knowledge. One of the main problems was identified as being insufficient education and an unwillingness to learn and discover something new. Regarding the question: Which of the following manifestations are the most present in local government bodies: a lack of promptness, complicated procedures and regulations; corruption; bad attitudes of employees towards citizens; high service prices; a lack of transparency? Respondents singled out, to the greatest extent, complicated procedures and regulations (over 50%), whilst one third stated that a lack of promptness, corruption, poor attitudes of employees toward citizens and high prices were the most significant reasons. Beside this, one of the most significantly prevalent manifestations in local governmental bodies is ignorance. „Employees are frequently unkind towards citizens, they are not willing to explain procedures to another party to thus facilitate procedures, and when the request is not in standard form, they do not even want to respond, either due to ignorance or for fear of making a mistake, so they count on the fact that the individual may give up their request for assistance.“ „Complex and complicated procedures and regulations. One might be sent to a certain body several times for one small thing, because they often interpret regulations differently, from one body to another“.

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Bearing in mind the previous work of local governmental bodies, respondents found that during the most recent period there had been a necessary the change of attitude in terms of respecting the law, employees’ behavior towards other parties, providing services to citizens, an increase the level of promptness, a simplification of procedures, the employing of young and qualified personnel. In addition, respondents valued the importance of decentralization in terms of decision-making, which would undoubtedly shorten procedures.

2. Corruption in local governmental bodies Respondents defined corruption as a negative social phenomenon. This included every form of bribery, abuse of office in order to gain personal benefit or benefit for someone else, the violation of human rights, social justice, equality, etc. „The forms of corruption are multiple: extra payment for services, lobbying through friends and party members. “ „Corruption is when you pay or lobby to get something that you should normally get, or when you pay or lobby to get something you must or should not get. “ „Corruption is when you are paid to do something and you ask a citizen to pay you for the same service that you are already being paid to do. “ Almost all respondents think that corruption is present in local governmental bodies. As reasons for their opinions, they stated the behavior of certain employees who obviously violate the rules and get away without punishment, and in addition to this, they stated that the appointments of leading party members were made regardless of their qualifications and that there was also a lack of performance control. The majority of respondents stated that they had formed their opinions based on their own experience (5 out of 9 respondents) and also based on the experience of others (2 respondents). According to one third of respondents, corruption is the most present in urbanism followed by construction works, inspection services, areas of administrative affairs, municipal services, determining and charging of revenues and the natural protection of resources. From the viewpoint of NGOs, the main cause of corruption in local governmental bodies was stated as being the following: a disregard of the law, nepotism and favoritism amongst employees, bad habits acquired a long time ago, the potential to acquire material benefit, a lack of control and of sanctions. As the best way of fighting corruption, respondents put forward the following measures: a consistent respect for the law, the provision of education and a raising of public awareness to show that corrupt behavior is both immoral and illegal, support for vulnerable structures in order to expose corrupt behavior, the introduction of sanctions for corrupt behavior, to encourage citizens to report cases of corruption, to increase wages for employees in public bodies, to simplify the procedures required to prove corruption, to improve cooperation between citizens and the relevant authorities responsible for discovering and preventing corruption and to draft a plan to fight corruption and to make stricter measures consequential to corrupt actions. Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative

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According to respondents, in order to encourage users of local governmental bodies to report corruption by employees in these institutions, it is necessary to develop public awareness. It is also important to give individuals courage, as well as to provide them with protection and anonymity in order to protect them from possible negative consequences. This can be achieved by building a level of trust in the subjects to whom corruption is reported. Also, respondents stated that it would be significant to carry out promotional activities through printed manuals for citizens and through a strong media campaign, which would provide everyone with the necessary information. Regarding the question have they ever, with the assistance of some local government body, “finished� work through personal contacts, which related to the organization? To this question almost everyone stated that they had not. Respondents were also asked whether they felt that local government members would contribute to the fight against corruption. The opinions regarding this matter were divided. The majority of respondents answered that they did not believe that they would as they were in the first line and would follow the interests of their party. Additionally it was felt that they were most often the ones who were corrupt. The rest of them stated that local government members could have an influence on the situation if their actions served as an example for others.

3. Promptness of local government bodies The promptness of work carried out by local governmental bodies is not at an enviable level and this depends on particular bodies, and from case to case, according to the opinion of respondents. It was also stated that unequal treatment is visible here and that certain prominent people finish their affairs faster than others. As far as departments are concerned, the most prompt are those with clear procedures and divisions of responsibilities, and where there is no discretionary power (registries and treasuries). During the last 12 months, around two thirds of respondents confirmed that responses by local governmental bodies regarding the provision of information or the provision of services were late in relation to prescribed deadlines, but that they did not suffer any significant negative consequences as a result of this. According to statements made, only one third filed complaints against employees in local government bodies. Respondents stated that the best ways of overcoming the problem of promptness, as seen in the work of public bodies, were the following: introducing fines, initiating disciplinary proceedings, introducing internal controls, publicly criticizing the lack of promptness demonstrated by employees, establishing qualified personnel in key positions and providing better working conditions.

4. Service accessibility of local government bodies During the last 12 months, according to assessments made by respondents, local governmental bodies were generally available. However, the same respondents expressed their dissatisfaction in terms of obtaining information regarding their requests. Generally, it was assessed that in local governmental bodies, it is difficult to access information, procedures are complicated and employees have a lack of knowledge.

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5. Behavior of employees in local governmental bodies towards other parties More than half of the respondents stated that they had experienced inconvenience as a result of contact with an employee from a local governmental body (5 out of 9) and only three of them stated that they had filed a complaint. The main reason given for not filing a complaint was that respondents stated that they had a lack of trust in the relevant authorities or that they did not have enough time to deal with such matters. NGOs mostly assessed their cooperation with local governmental bodies as being of an average level but they also added that it could be a lot better, whilst some organizations assessed the level of cooperation as being inadequate. „Local Government is not interested, and it sees our critical remarks as an assault, rather than as a form of assistance to improve performance. It never took up and used our expertise in specific areas and there are still many new projects and investments planned by the municipality. “ As a way to improve cooperation, respondents suggested the following measures: better coordination between local governments and NGOs, a more serious approach to problems, an improvement in cooperation, the active involvement of NGOs in work carried out and vice versa, and also the education of personnel along with drawing local government closer to its purpose of existence.

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7.

RECOMMENDATIONS

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Based on the research conducted and the analysis of the collected data, certain recommendations have been put forward with the aim of contributing to the improvement, most importantly to the integrity, of local governments in Montenegro. Some of the aforementioned recommendations are possible to implement in a relatively short period of time, given the fact that they do not require much additional effort, whilst some others will need a longer period of time period to be implemented.

Use and service quality of local self government bodies For the purpose of introducing the general public to the service provided by local self governmental bodies, it is necessary to insist on educational campaigns. These campaigns should be aimed at informing citizens of their rights, and should present the basic competences and activities of local self governmental bodies. Also, it is important to enable more active participation of citizens in local self government activities as this would contribute to the enhancement of their initiatives for solving particular issues which exist in the work of local governments. For the purpose of improving the performance of local self governmental bodies and in order to provide more qualitative services, it is necessary to continue with the on-going training of employees, in accordance with the National Training Strategy12 and European standards, as well as with improving working conditions for employees.

Corruption in local self government bodies Regarding respondents’ perception on the existence of corruption in local self governmental bodies, this was higher than shown by data reflecting their own direct experiences. The given measures would, to a large extent, contribute to the improvement of the image of the performance of local self governmental bodies, which would, in turn, contribute to strengthening public trust in the administration of local self governments. It would also help to upgrade the integrity of both individuals and the overall administration system of local self governments. The existence of nepotism, i.e. “finishing the job through personal contacts” additionally influences the already negative opinion of the general public regarding the performance of local governmental bodies. Regarding this, it is necessary to work on strengthening the awareness of local self governmental employees about the necessity for them to be more actively involved in order to build up public trust in their work, as well as to prevent suspicions over their ethical behavior. This involvement could be in the form of establishing and strengthening the culture of organizations. This should be based on correctly following procedures and following realistic priorities rather than pursuing informal relations. In other words, it is necessary to strengthen the principle of impartiality, first of all by applying the rule of equality which, in fact, fosters the impartiality principle. The additional professionalization of employees, with regard to their relationships with other parties, is recommended. It should particularly be stressed that there should be a decisive refusal by all employees to accept gifts given to them by citizens, in order for the job to be “finished over the line (queue)”, before the due time, etc. as other parties clearly “see” that as National Training Strategy was adopted by the Government of Montenegro and by the Local Community Association Assembly during 2008

12

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Local Self Government Sector Integrity and Capacity Assessment corruption, although it is not necessarily the case. Apart from that, it is recommended that the Code of Ethics should be adopted in local self governmental bodies, which, along with everything else would help to positively influence the fight against corruption. This requires a consistent implementation, which is of extreme importance for the integrity of local self governments. In addition, it is necessary to take appropriate measures against those who violate the Code of Ethics, and that these measures should be both real and transparent. Acting in accordance with the codex should be taken into consideration in career advancement. It is necessary to insist on transparent employment, by promoting and rewarding personnel according to objective qualifications and expertise criteria and to minimize the influence of political, family and other connections, in all areas of local self governmental administration bodies. In order to decrease the real possibility of unfounded accusations related to the abuse of office or other corrupt behavior, other than that mentioned above, it is necessary to provide both new institutional frameworks and to strengthen existing ones. This, in particular, refers to departments in charge of issuing construction permits, work permits, construction inspections, urbanism and market inspections. This also includes the improvement of material and non material working conditions in local self governmental bodies (office space, internet connections, additional education, etc.) It is necessary to work in parallel on strengthening trust regarding the institutional protection of individuals who report corruption and on further continuing to promote an educational campaign, aimed at exposing corruption and its manifestations, targeted at all levels in society.

Promptness of local self government It is necessary to introduce data processing systems which contain the facility to update obligations by maturity terms. It is also crucial to separate the work of direct executives from other parties, in order to decrease the possible impact on their work. Also, it is necessary to either introduce new control systems or to enhance existing ones in the current operational system. It is possible to influence an increase in the levels of responsibility and promptness demonstrated by employees through effective and rigorous internal and external controls, as well as through individual performance evaluation. This should lead to a decrease in the potential abuse of individuals to whom certain tasks have been assigned and should also narrow the margin for manipulation and inappropriate operation of these bodies. In addition to the above mentioned suggestions, it is necessary to provide continuous training for local self governmental employees as well as regularly informing them about existing, preferably simplified, procedures in order to eliminate the lack of promptness which is reflected through a lack of information and lack of proficiency shown by those carrying out delegated tasks.

Access to local self government services The respondents of all four target groups regarded the areas of construction, the issuing of construction permits and inspection supervision to be the major problems faced by local governments in this area. Considering the fact that these are highly risky areas for the manifestation of different types of abuse, it is necessary to enhance the internal and external 66 Directorate for Anti-Corruption Initiative


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control procedures for employees who are directly or indirectly involved into solving issues related to these areas. This means that it is necessary to work on the establishment of effective mechanisms which would enhance the control of the issuing of construction permits, as well as introducing controls for the supervision and inspection of performance. In addition, it is necessary to conduct process analyses of certain permit and certificate issuing processes and to provide recommendations to simplify them as well as monitoring the results achieved at the end of defined time periods. It is important to insist on practice which enables people to easily obtain information related to procedures concerning the of issuing certain certificates, permits, receipts, etc. as often citizens suspect that corruption is the cause, although it is in fact just a word and the issue is more about dissatisfaction with decisions made, a lack of promptness or a lack of professionalism in the performance of local self governmental bodies. Local governments should publish information on their web sites related to integrity and to the work carried out by local governmental bodies, as well as information related to customers’ rights. This would make certain acts more accessible (enactments, procedures, regulations, etc.) through which both local self governmental employees and citizens could gain insight into valid regulations, procedures and laws.

Attitude of local self government employees towards service users It is recommended that an effective and reliable system should be introduced for processing complaints regarding the performance of certain areas of local governments. The system should be able to efficiently receive information from citizens and commercial entities and should also be capable of responding quickly to their complaints (quality, promptness, timeliness and etc.). Also, it is necessary to undertake preventive measures aimed at increasing the levels of promptness, the quality of and professional relationships of employees and to introduce mechanisms for the analysis and assessment of results achieved and to undertake appropriate measures in accordance with the results. It is necessary to provide an adequate IT base which can accelerate and simplify the process of cycling necessary data within the whole system. In the end, this should accelerate the communication process with customers, which should again, in turn, decrease the possibility of manipulation which is manifest in certain specific processes in local governments.

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