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Multilevel Governance – History or Future? The Swedish Way! 10 March 2011 Carola Gunnarsson First vice president of the Swedish Association of Local Authorities.

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Presentation on theme: "Multilevel Governance – History or Future? The Swedish Way! 10 March 2011 Carola Gunnarsson First vice president of the Swedish Association of Local Authorities."— Presentation transcript:

1 Multilevel Governance – History or Future? The Swedish Way! 10 March 2011 Carola Gunnarsson First vice president of the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions

2 Sweden – a country full of contrasts

3 Sweden is a unitary state with a history of strong local goverment The local and regional authorities; - 20% of the GDP in Sweden - 70% of the public consumption - 25% of all employees

4 Sweden is a unitary state with a history of strong local goverment The local and regional authorities; - have the right to levy taxes - taxes and fees account for 80% of the municipal revenues - the state grants account for 20%, the biggest part is not earmarked

5 Sweden is a unitary state with a history of strong local goverment Local self-government has the content, scope and freedom of action which is necessary to secure and develop a well functioning local society

6 Historical perspective - Alliances between the king and the peasants in the 16th century in order to limit the power of the church and the nobility the first municipal statues were adopted - A dramatic development when the municipalities acquired new responsibilities - Between 1952 and 1974; from municipalities to less than From municipalities with few employees and a lot of laymen to a period of professionalization and a lot of employees

7 The levels of democracy

8 Local Government Act (1992) Municipalities are responsible for matters relating to the inhabitants of the municipality and their immediate environment. The main task of the county councils and regions is the provision of healthcare.

9 Responsibilities of the municipalities - Child care - Primary, secondary and adult education - Social services: Social assistance, care of the disabled, elderly care - Spatial planning and construction - Environment (water, waste management, sewage) - Culture - Emergency and rescue services - Energy - Housing

10 Responsibilities of the county councils and regions - Healthcare - Public transport/infrastructure - Regional development

11 Responsibilities of the national level - Foreign policy - Police - Higher education - Research - Labour market - Social insurance schemes

12 The Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SALAR) - SALAR represents Sweden’s 290 municipalities and 20 county councils/regions

13 Mission SALAR is an employer’s and lobby organisation for municipalities and county councils/regions. We look after the interests of our members and offer them support and services. We raise issues, act decisively and enlighten public opinion. Our mission is to provide municipalities and county councils with better conditions for local and regional self-government. Our vision is to develop the welfare system and its services. It’s a matter of democracy.

14 Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions Congress Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions Congress Board Executive Comittee Permanent Committees Committee on Democracy International Committee Committee on Culture and Leisure Committee on Primary Healthcare and Elderly Care Committee on Planning and Community Development Committee on Social Policy Committee on Growth and Regional Development Committee on Education Committee on eHealth Permanent Committees Committee on Democracy International Committee Committee on Culture and Leisure Committee on Primary Healthcare and Elderly Care Committee on Planning and Community Development Committee on Social Policy Committee on Growth and Regional Development Committee on Education Committee on eHealth Delegations Delegation for Negotiations Delegation on Healthcare Delegations Delegation for Negotiations Delegation on Healthcare Temporary Programme Committees Committee on Freedom of choice Committee on Welfare funding Temporary Programme Committees Committee on Freedom of choice Committee on Welfare funding The political organisation of the Association after the 2007 Congress

15 - All 290 municipalities and 16 county councils and 4 regions are members % financed by members – no state subsidies - Complete independence from central government An independent organisation

16 Autonomy becomes real when…. - the municipalities have legitimacy - the municipalities have power and energy - the municipalities have freedom of action

17 Thank You for Your attention! Carola Gunnarsson


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