Romania’s government is aiming to have administration reforms of and the setting up of new regional authorities completed by December 2013. The “regionalization” plan seeks to bring local government in line with European norms and make each of the country’s regions a functioning administrative unit.
The government is currently preparing the legal framework, but the changes will require an amendment to the Constitution, which in turn needs to be approved by a referendum. The Minister of Regional Development and Public Administration Liviu Dragnea said he expects the referendum to be in September.
The process will see central government and county council powers pass to regional authorities and, according to Dragnea, will also reduce staffing levels, by some 10-15 percent. Responsibilities related to regional development in particular will pass to the new regional authorities. Dragnea said that the changes should not bring additional costs as the money saved at the county and national government levels will fund the new regional authorities.
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