Ministries and Authorities should co-operate with local councils – AD

AD appeals to government to help local councils carry out their duties effectively and treat them as autonomous elected bodies and not as an extension of government departments.

AD Chairperson Michael Briguglio said: “Local councils should have full cooperation by Ministries and Authorities to implement their decisions and to enforce basic civic duties such as bye-laws and laws against littering, nuisance and respect for residents by commercial establishments. The election of green councillors next Saturday will ensure that Ministries and Authorities are publicly called to respect local council decisions.”

“Unfortunately local councils face bureaucratic hurdles, or a lack of interest on government’s part. A case in point is a draft bye-law drafted by AD councillor Ralph Cassar in H’Attard and tabled together with then Deputy Mayor Charlo Bonnici, which despite garnering the support of the whole council never saw the light of day. The bye-law sought to promote good neighbourliness by obliging commercial outlets to clean the area outside and next to their establishment since it is a fact that streets where there are establishments selling food, cigarettes and beverages end up full of litter. The bye-law would have given some extra clout to the local council to tackle this issue. However this bye-law got stuck, probably because of a lack of interest by the Ministry of Justice who are supposed to give the go ahead to councils to approve bye-laws. Local councils are also finding it very difficult to enforce laws, since they depend completely either on local wardens who only enforce traffic rules for a couple of hours a day or else on the police – who are either understaffed or are not interested in enforcing laws related to nuisance, littering and other infringements which they consider unimportant.”

Link to draft bye-law:
https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B9j7b3I1RJYkMmljRmF1aldTMFNtRVA3R0llcEc4QQ

Andre’ Vella
AD PRO

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