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Round Table on Transparency in Local Government
 
On October 29, 1999, the town of Smolyan hosted the fourth round table of a cycle of discussions on “The Problem of Corruption in Public Administration.”
The round table was organized by the Center for Economic Policy within the framework of Coalition 2000.

The discussion was attended by representatives of local government, magistrates, police officers, representatives of local non-governmental organizations, and citizens of the town.

Two reports were presented before the participants in the round table. Petkan Iliev, lecturer at the University of National and World Economy, presented the local government “Transparency Matrix,” developed within the framework of Coalition 2000. Ivan Vlahov, Communications Officer for Coalition 2000, examined the role of the state in curbing corruption.

The discussion that followed considered the issue of punishment for corrupt acts. According to most participants, the law envisages heavy enough punishments for corruption but they are rarely implemented.

Measures to improve transparency in local government were also discussed. It was proposed to build a municipal information center and to create a computerized data base about various aspects of the work of local government (staging bids, issuing permits, etc.), which should be available on the Internet.

The participants in the discussion insisted that a public register for the incomes of the persons employed in the state and municipal administration be created.
 
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