STRATEGY FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A MODERN ADMINISTRATIVE SYSTEM IN THE REPUBLIC OF BULGARIA

In compliance with the Programme of the Bulgarian Government Bulgaria 2001, which defines comprehensively the mission of the new democratic state and its role in regulating relations in society, the model of the future society, and the principal guide-lines for the development of the country until the year 2001;

Acknowledging the main objective of that Programme - to develop the Republic of Bulgaria in conformity with the European standards as a modern European state with sustained growth, having a clear-cut national identity and modern state government, a state in which the rule of law and the basic human rights and liberties of its citizens are observed, with efficient market economy, capable of responding to the challenges of the 21st century, and with a social policy based on new principles;

Taking into account the categorically declared willingness of the Republic of Bulgaria for a full-fledged membership of the European Union and joining the Euro-Atlantic structures;

Considering the present state of the public administration system and the necessity of its overall transformation in accordance with the principles of the new Bulgarian Constitution, the needs of the Bulgarian society, and the contemporary democratic principles concerning state structure and state organization;

Taking into account the necessity to accelerate the Constitutional process with respect to establishing of modern administrative structure of the system of the state bodies of the Republic of Bulgaria, and of the executive power in particular as a key factor in the achievement of tangible managerial results, and in the implementation of the strategic objectives of the Republic of Bulgaria on the eve of the new century;

Mindful of the role of the public administration as an instrument for the realization of the reform in the economy, the improvement in governance, and the approximation of the Bulgarian legislation with that of the European Union;

Considering the necessity of conducting this process throughout all spheres of state government, both on central level, i.e. in the system of legislative, executive and judiciary power, and on local level - in the system of local self-government;

Taking into account the significance of the administrative structures of the executive power for pursuing the state policy, for governance, for regulating processes in the society, and for providing administrative services to the public;

Mindful of the role and significance of the continual intercommunication with the citizens and with their organizations under the conditions of the civil society;

Expressing willingness to galvanize the creation and development of the information society through introduction of up-to-date information and communication technologies into the activities of the Bulgarian administration, and into the services provided to citizens and legal persons;

By way of implementation of the above listed commitments, deriving from the imperative to conduct an interrelated process of establishing modern administrative system, capable to carry out the state policy in compliance with national interests, the principal strategic objectives to establish a modern system of public administration in the Republic of Bulgaria can be defined as:

 

REGARDING THE GENERAL ORGANIZATION OF PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION

1. creation oF A NEW ADMINISTRATIVE STRUCTURE:

Administrative structures facilitate the activities of state power bodies and those of local self-government. The administrative structures will be established on the basis of a unified model that specifies both the organization, and the functions of the staff members in each administrative structure. Thus, a transparency in the system of public administration is being attained, reducing favourable circumstances for corruption proliferation within it.

This model should be flexible in order to be applicable to all administrative structures, and should include:

- a mechanism for overall management of public administration, to be carried out by the Council of Ministers through imposing organizational standards;

- common organizational rules for management and supervision of the activities of the administrative structures;

- definition of the job position and function hierarchy within the public administration system;

- definition of the essential requirements for qualification to hold a job position in the public administration system.

2. establishment oF A SYSTEM OF COORDINATION AMONG STATE POWER BODIES:

- on nationwide level, to ensure pursuing a unified state policy;

- on regional level, to carry out an efficient state policy in the municipalities, mindful of local specific features and interests.

3. endorsement aND GUARANTEEING OF THE CIVIL SERVANT STATUS. The status of the civil servants will guarantee their protection against arbitrary dismissal and the opportunity for professional and career promotion within the system ofpublic administration. This in itself will enhance its positive image and create conditions for young people to enter the public administration. The introduction of the civil servant status will involve:

- depolitization of the civil servants through the separation of the political pro cess of managerial decision-making from the process and procedures of its implementa tion;

- introduction of the competition principle in the recruitment of civil servants an of clear-cut rules for advance up the internal hierarchy on the basis of periodic meri ratings and efficiency reports;

- creation of conditions and a mechanism for raising the professional skill leve and retraining of the civil servants;

- development of specific programmes for qualification enhancement of the civil servants, involving the use of up-to-date information technologies.

4. improvement oF THE MECHANISMS AND STRUCTURES FOR COORDINATION OF THE MULTI LATERAL AND BILATERAL FINANCIAL AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE VIA INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTIONS DONORS, AND ORGANIZATIONS:

- betterment of the coordination mechanism concerning European integration issues with a view to accelerate Bulgaria's integration into the European and Euro-Atlantic structures;

- creation of a common programme and finance mechanism, and a structure for management and control of the assistance made available to the Republic of Bulgaria by various donors.

5. bringing oF THE JUDICIARY DOCTRINE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE SEPARATION OF POWER PRINCIPLES, AND WITH THE DEMOCRATIC TYPE OF SOCIAL RELATIONS BEING FORMED IN THE republiC OF bulgaria:

- elaborating of a system of rules concerning law-making activities and bylaws;

- conducting of an overall review of the primary and secondary legislative system currently in force with a view to bring it into compliance with the new legal doctrine and with the principles of the Constitution.

6. launching oF AN ACTIVE INFORMATION POLICY TO ENSURE TRANSPARENCY OF THE PRO CESSES OF CHANGES WITHIN THE PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION, WITH THE OBJECTIVE TO: - inform the public at large on the process of establishing of a new administrativestructure, and on the new rights and opportunities for the citizens and legal persons ensuing from it;

- acquire an efficient feedback on the relevant attitude of the public, and maintain a continual dialogue aiming at better consideration of the interests of the citizens;

- facilitate the appearance of a brand new type of administrative culture of the public administration employees, the creation of an active and positive attitude to and empathy with the changes being made, in addition to maintaining a dialogue with them and their continual briefing about the progress and the objectives of those changes.

 

REGARDING THE ORGANIZATIONAL MODEL OF THE EXECUTIVE POWER

1. designing oF A COMMON ORGANIZATIONAL MODEL OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE STRUCTURES WITHIN THE SYSTEM OF THE EXECUTIVE POWER, WHICH INCLUDES:

- the main administrative structures in the executive power system:

- a system for internal control over the administration's activities;

- regulation of the possibility to set up additional specialized administrative structures that are to perform certain functions of the executive power bodies (e.g. supervisory functions over the implementation of laws, or to regulate certain social relations); - a system of policy coordination with civil society structures.

2. enhancement oF THE POTENTIAL FOR GOVERNANCE OF THE SOCIAL PROCESSES BY THE EXECUTIVE POWER, THROUGH:

- an efficient organization of the managerial process:

Government-to-local-authority' principles, in order to effectuate a large-scale programme for deregulation, decentralization and efficient separation of roles between the public and private sector, alongside an organizational restructuring of the Government administration for a more efficient utilization of resources in compliance with the national priorities;

 

- organizational and functional separation of the processes concerning policy-making from those involving its realization through the precise definition on one hand of the political (Constitutional) level of the executive power, and on the other hand-of the administration, which facilitates the actions of the executive power bodies through the implementation of state policy;

- regulation of inter-agency coordination and of the process of managerial decision-making:

3. reduction oF EXPENDITURES FOR GOVERNING: - relieving of the executive power administration of extrinsic activities and func-

tions;

- dismantling of all redundant structures and all overlapping activities both in the entire executive power system, and in each administrative unit, which will be carried out on the basis of a detailed analysis of the functions performed by every administrative unit within the executive power system;

- elaboration of rules and of a mechanism for public procuring aiming at increasing the efficiency of spending state budget and municipal funds;

- privatization of the administrative services;

- designing of a mechanism for periodic assessment of the effectiveness of the administrative units' work;

- optimization of the number of public administration employees, and elaboration of procedures to hire ad hoc non-payroll staff officers on labour contract basis for certain specified tasks and projects.

4. enhancement oF THE ROLE AND OF THE MANAGERIAL POTENTIAL OF THE regional governor, aND DECENTRALIZATION OF MANAGERIAL PREROGATIVES, THROUGH:

- optimization of the administrative and territorial structure of the country;

- organizing of territorial sections of the Ministries within the regional administration;

- designing of an effective mechanism for coordination among the local self-government bodies and the central bodies of the executive power on the basis of the optimization of the municipal administration structures in accordance with a common structure model of public administration.

5. introduction oF UP-TO-DATE INFORMATION TECHNOLOGIES IN GOVERNANCE:

- Elaboration of a general information strategy in order to increase the informational back-up to the governance and the capability to make more efficient managerial decisions, which includes:

=> establishment of criteria for classification of the information necessary for managerial decision-making;

=> creation of specialized data-bases with operative information dynamics of the social processes;

=> automation of the information flows and of the routine work in executive power system, e.g. daily operation activities, actions directly related to render of services to citizens and to legal persons, Government's information policy, etc.

6. increase IN THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES RENDERED TO CITIZENS AND TO LEGAL PERSONS:

- designing of a mechanism to improve the quality of the administrative services rendered to citizens and to legal persons through the introduction of market mechanisms in the management and the activities of the structures rendering those services

- regulating of the feasibility of privatization of the administrative services without deprivation of the state of the right to exercise control and to protect the interests of the citizens and the legal persons;

- introduction of up-to-date information technologies into the rendering administrative services;

- designing of a mechanism for control over the quality of the administrative services and narrowing of corruption-yielding conditions through the expansion of citizens' participation in the said control.

7. increase IN THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE INFORMATION POLICY:

- transition from a reactive to a pro-active information policy;

- transition from informing to communication, i.e. engaging into a dialog citizens, of the interested parties, and of society as a whole;

- establishment of specialized information and public relations units (within respective state power bodies) with a status enabling efficient fulfillment of assigned to them;

- designing of a mechanism for information policy coordination both within framework of the executive power system, and in the other state power bodies, as well as in the local self-government institutions;

- elaboration of a regulatory system concerning access to information in compliance with the Constitutional right of the citizens to be informed;

- establishment of a procedure for efficient preparation of unambiguous, precise and concrete information for Government communication purposes, utilizing the expert potential of the public administration;

- designing of internal communication systems for building up of new administration culture;

- efficient utilization of the up-to-date information technologies for processing and distribution of information.

The Strategy for the establishment of a modern administrative system in the Republic of Bulgaria constitutes the comprehensive vision of the Bulgarian Government to create an efficient state organization.

The Strategy traces the way to consolidation of the Bulgarian state organization through the process of establishment of a new administrative structure of state governance. This process comprises the application of the universally accepted democratic principles in the shaping and organizing of the activities of the administrative bodies of the executive power system, the overcoming of hierarchy-related discrepancies, and the imperfections of the structures, the dismantling of the redundant units, the unequivocal definition of functions, and the establishment of a system of assessment and control over public administration activities, limiting conditions for corruption proliferation. ;

The process of creation of a modern public administration has the priority objective to ensure the realization of the regulatory role of the State through the introduction of an efficient system for selection and recruitment of appropriate personnel for the public administration, and the utilization of up-to-date information technologies. The establishment of a modern administrative system of the executive power is of crucial significance for the practical realization of the economic and social transformation of society.

The Strategy is a basis for the accomplishment of coordination of the processes and actions for establishment of adequate administrative structures of all State power systems, i.e. legislative, judiciary and local self-government.

All planned actions aim at increasing of the potential and effectiveness of government, and galvanization of the process of the integration afthe Republic of Bulgaria in the European Union through harmonization of the legislation basis, and the establish ment of the respective efficient administrative structures.

The Strategy has been worked out on the basis of the Government's Program BULGARIA 2001 heeding Bulgaria's willingness to accelerate its integration into structures of the European Union.

The Strategy determines the genuine commitment and the political will of Bulgarian Government to realize the declared objectives.

Cabinet Decision ? of February 9,

DECLARATION OF THE GOVERNMENT

Today the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Bulgaria, implementing its Programme Bulgaria 2001 to build the Republic of Bulgaria as a modern, steadily developing, in compliance with the European standards, European state with:

a clear-cut national identity and modern State government;

an established rule of law and observance of the basic rights and liberties of the citizens;

an efficient market economy, capable of responding to the challenges of the 21st century;

an essentially new in principle social policy; approved the following

STRATEGY FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A MODERN ADMINISTRATIVE SYSTEM IN THE REPUBLIC OF BULGARIA

The Strategy defines the principal objectives of the Government in the establishment of a modern administrative system of the State bodies of the Republic of Bulgaria, and of the executive power in particular, in accordance with:

- the categorically expressed willingness of the Republic of Bulgaria to acquire full-fledged membership of the European Union and to join the Euro-Atlantic structures;

- the role of public administration as an instrument for the implementation of the reform in the economy, the improvement in governance, and the convergence of the Bulgarian legislation to that of the European Union;

- the significance of the administrative structures of the executive power for the pursuing of the State policy, for the governance, the regulation of social processes, and the ensuring of administrative services to the citizens;

- the role and significance of the continual communication of the Government with the citizens and their organizations under civil society conditions;

- the current state of the public administration system and the necessity of its overall transformation in compliance with the principles of the new Bulgarian Constitution:

- the necessity to conduct this process in all spheres of State government, both on central level, i.e. in the system of legislative, executive, and judiciary power, and on local level - in the local self-government system;

- the necessity to introduce up-to-date information and communication technologies into the work of the Bulgarian administration, and into the services to the citizens and the legal persons.

In the process of establishment of the new administrative system the Government will concentrate its efforts upon the eradication of corruption-condoning conditions through strict definition of the rights and competence of the civil servants, and increase of the transparency in public administration.

To achieve the objectives of the Strategy the Council of Ministers will submit for approval by the National Assembly the drafts of:

the Law on the Organization of the Public Administration;

the Civil Servants' Law;

the Law for Access to Information;

the Law on the Normative Acts;

the Law for Amendment of the Public Procurement Law In compliance with the provisions of the aforementioned Laws, and being convinced that by the end of its tenure in office the principal objectives of the Strategy will have been achieved, the Council of Ministers undertakes the commitment to design and approve a comprehensive mechanism for transition to the new organizational system, including all necessary bylaws.

Mindful of the importance of the outlined objectives for a successful meeting of the challenges of the 21st century, and for the development of the Republic of Bulgaria as a democratic European state with efficient mechanism for respecting the rights and liberties of its citizens, proclaimed in the Constitution,

the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Bulgaria declares once again its categorical determination to establish a modern administrative system in the Republic of Bulgaria, and consequently requests for the nation's understanding and cooperation.

 

February 2,1998