COUNCIL OF EUROPE
COMMITTEE OF MINISTERS
The Committee of Ministers, under the terms of Articles 15.a and 16 of the Statute of the Council of Europe,
Having regard to Statutory Resolution (94) 3 relating to the setting up of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe;
Having regard to the Statutory Resolution (2000) 1 relating to the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe;
Having regard to Congress Recommendation 162 (2005) on the revision of the Charter of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe;
Considering that one of the bases of a democratic society is the existence of a solid and effective local and regional democracy in conformity with the principle of subsidiarity included in the European Charter of Local Self-Government whereby public responsibilities shall be exercised, in preference, by those authorities which are closest to the citizens, having regard to the extent and nature of the public tasks and the requirements of efficiency and economy;
Bearing in mind that the creation of a consultative organ genuinely representing both local and regional authorities in Europe was approved in principle by the Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe at the Vienna Summit;
Having regard to the conclusions of the Warsaw Summit deciding to “pursue, in partnership with the Parliamentary Assembly and the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe, intergovernmental co-operation on democracy and good governance at all levels” and stating that “the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe must continue to promote local democracy and decentralisation, taking into account the internal organisation of the countries concerned, so as to reach all levels of European society”;
Wishing to enhance and develop the role of local and regional authorities within the institutional structure of the Council of Europe;
Considering that the provisions hereinafter set out are not inconsistent with the Statute of the Council of Europe,
Resolves as follows:
The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe (hereinafter referred to as the Congress) is a consultative organ composed of representatives of local and regional authorities. Its membership and functions are regulated by the present articles, by the Charter adopted by the Committee of Ministers and by the Rules of Procedure adopted by the Congress.
1. The Congress, in addition to its consultative functions, furthermore undertakes activities the aims of which shall be:
a. to ensure the participation of local and regional authorities in the implementation of the ideal of European unity, as defined in Article 1 of the Statute of the Council of Europe, as well as their representation and active involvement in the Council of Europe's work;
b. to submit proposals to the Committee of Ministers in order to promote local and regional democracy;
c. to promote co-operation between local and regional authorities;
d. to maintain, within the sphere of its responsibilities, contact with international organisations as part of the general external relations policy of the Council of Europe;
e. to work in close co-operation, on the one hand with the national, democratic associations of local and regional authorities, and, on the other hand, with the European organisations representing local and regional authorities of the member States of the Council of Europe, and notably with the Committee of the Regions of the European Union.
2. The Committee of Ministers and the Parliamentary Assembly shall consult the Congress on issues which are likely to affect the responsibilities and essential interests of the local and/or regional authorities which the Congress represents.
3. The Congress shall prepare on a regular basis country-by-country reports on the situation of local and regional democracy in all member States and in States which have applied to join the Council of Europe, and shall ensure, in particular, that the principles of the European Charter of Local Self-Government are implemented.
4. The Congress shall also prepare reports and recommendations following the observation of local and/or regional elections.
5. Recommendations and opinions of the Congress shall be sent as appropriate to the Parliamentary Assembly and/or the Committee of Ministers as well as to European and international organisations and institutions. Resolutions and other adopted texts which do not entail possible action by the Assembly and/or the Committee of Ministers shall be transmitted to them for their information.
1. The Congress shall be composed of Representatives of local or regional authorities, in conformity with Article 2.1 of the Congress Charter. Delegates shall be appointed according to the criteria and procedure established in the Charter, which will be adopted by the Committee of Ministers, each State ensuring in particular an equitable representation of its various types of local and regional authorities.
2. Each member State shall have the right to the same number of seats in the Congress as it has in the Parliamentary Assembly. Each member State may send a number of substitutes equal to the number of representatives appointed according to the same criteria and procedure.
3. Representatives and substitutes shall be appointed for a period of two years and shall maintain their functions until the opening of the following session, except in cases referred to in Article 2.6 of the Charter.
1. The Congress shall meet in ordinary session at least once a year. Ordinary sessions shall be held at the seat of the Council of Europe unless the Congress and the Committee of Ministers decide by common consent that the session should be held elsewhere.
2. The Congress is composed of two Chambers: the Chamber of Local Authorities which represents local authorities and the Chamber of Regions which represents regional authorities. Within the limits of available resources allocated to it and considering the priorities of the Council of Europe, the Congress shall undertake its activities and may set up the following bodies: a Bureau, a Standing Committee, statutory committees and ad hoc working groups, which are necessary to perform its tasks. The Congress will inform the Committee of Ministers on the setting up of its committees. The Bureau, Standing Committee and statutory committees may meet in Chamber only during the plenary meetings of these bodies, and any matter considered by a statutory committee meeting in Chamber may not be considered by the plenary meeting of that committee.
The number of seats in the statutory committees will be set by the Congress in its Rules of Procedure, in such a way as to guarantee the principle according to which each Congress member has the right to at least one seat on a committee, including the Standing Committee. However, a member cannot have more than one titular seat.
1. The current text replaces Statutory Resolution (2000) 1 relating to the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe adopted by the Committee of Ministers on 15 March 2000, at the 702nd meeting of the Ministers' Deputies.
2. The text of the Charter of the Congress appended to the current Statutory Resolution replaces the text of the Charter adopted by the Committee of Ministers on 15 March 2000, at the 702nd meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies.