Local administration is the system of administration established to meet the common needs of the people living in a specific region and managed as a result of the cooperation of bodies elected by these people and appointed by the central government. Local administrative agencies are authorized by the central government agencies to introduce rules and meet financial obligations on matters related to the region. Municipalities and provincial administrations are two main pillars of local administration operating in Turkey.
All municipalities are public corporate entities. Municipal organizations must be set up in all provincial and district centers. Municipalities are required to meet the common regional and civic needs of the region and the regional populace.
Municipalities and villages near big cities, the populations of which were over 300,000 during the last census, may be attached to the metropolitan municipality so that basic municipal services may be carried out in an adequate and efficient matter and under complimentary plans.
Besides carrying out duties related to health and social assistance, public works, education, agriculture, the economy and the well-being of the citizens, municipalities are required to take the necessary measures to meet all civic needs through municipal services.
In order to secure the well-being and health of the regional populace and maintain order in the region municipalities are authorized:
- To impose and enforce rules and municipal prohibitions where prescribed by law.
- To punish those violating the prohibitions.
- To collect municipal taxes, duties and fees.
- To set up drinking water, city gas, electricity and transport facilities and networks or transfer their operational rights.
- To run transport vehicles within the municipal borders.
Municipal administration comprises an assembly, a council, and a mayor. The Municipal Assembly, elected by popular vote, varies in size with the population and approves the annual budget of the municipality, plans projects related to public works and city planning and determines taxes, rates of duties, fees and tariffs of various sorts.
The Municipal Council consists of the mayor, the heads of the municipal departments and members elected by the municipal assembly from among its own members. It prepares transport tariffs and fees, sets commodity prices, determines municipal fines and budgets, and decides on personnel issues.
The Mayor is the chief executive and representative of the municipality. He is elected for a term of five years.
Municipal Council members are elected by the proportional representation system, whereas mayors are elected by simple majority.
Every Turkish citizen eligible to become a deputy in the National Assembly and who has lived in a specific electoral zone for at least six months may be elected mayor or municipal assembly member for the area.
Functions of the provincial local government organizations operating under various laws can be grouped as follows:
- Health and social assistance
- Public works
- Culture and education
- Economic and commercial functions
The governor, the representative of the central administration, is also the head of the provincial administration and its chief executive. The governor usually acts in line with the decisions made by the provincial general assembly. The provincial general assembly, the most authoritative body of the organization, consists of members elected for a term of four years. Meeting every year for forty days under the governor, it approves the provincial budget and makes decisions regarding the institutional services of the province.
The standing provincial council, composed of four members elected for a term of one year by the provincial general assembly from among its own members, reviews and approves fiscal matters, informs the provincial general assembly of the state of affairs of the organization and submits to the mayor, upon his request, its views related to local government operations.
Members of the provincial general assembly are elected by the proportional representation system, provided that their parties receive at least 10 percent of the votes.
Each district forms an electoral zone for elections to the provincial general assembly.
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