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Intergovernmental Relations

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					Intergovernmental Relations
      Forum of Federations

       Intensive Course on
      Democratic Federalism
                          OVERVIEW

• What are intergovernmental relations (IGR)?

• Why are they important?

• Patterns of intergovernmental relations

• The tasks of intergovernmental relations

• Some examples

• IGR in the Iraqi Federation

• Observations and Conclusions
    WHAT ARE INTERGOVERMENTAL RELATIONS (IGR)?
•    A federal constitution establishes the structure of government; IGR bring the
     structure to life

•    The constitution is the structure; IGR are the process – the way in which the
     necessary business of the federation gets done

•    Two types:
      1. Relations between the central government and the provinces or states
         (vertical)
      2. Relations among the provinces or the states themselves (horizontal)

•    No real watertight compartments – overlap, entanglement, sharing

•    Powers and responsibilities in modern federations cannot be cleanly divided
     between two orders of government; hence they have to work together – IGR

•    In some federations, powers and responsibilities are concurrent or shared in
     various ways – hence IGR

•    Involves both politicians and officials
               WHY ARE THEY IMPORTANT?

• Federal constitutions are usually difficult to amend, fairly rigid

• For this and other reasons, governments must work with and
  against one another as circumstances change

• In all cases, intergovernmental relations are an inevitable, vital
  and omnipresent feature of functioning federations

• They constitute one of the most important instruments of
  flexibility in a federal political system. Some others are:

   – The utilization of concurrent jurisdiction
   – The intergovernmental delegation of legislative powers and
     administrative responsibilities
   – „Opting in‟ and „opting out‟ arrangements
   – Intergovernmental agreements and accords
 PATTERNS IF INTERGOVERNMENTAL RELATIONS: I


• Parliamentary federations:
   – Executive and legislature fused
   – Power concentrated in the executive within each
     government and dispersed among governments
   – „Executive federalism‟

• Congressional federations:
   – Executive and legislature separated
   – Power dispersed both within and among
     governments
   – IGR dispersed
PATTERNS OF INTERGOVERNMENTAL RELATIONS: II


• How formal? How institutionalized?

• Intergovernmental cooperation as a constitutional principle

• The role of the second chamber/upper house

• Councils, committees and other intergovernmental bodies

• Informal norms, practices and meetings
THE TASKS OF INTERGOVERNMENTAL RELATIONS: I


• Primary functions:

   – Putting the provisions of the Constitution into
     action

   – Resolving conflicts between the federal partners

   – Adapting governing and policy arrangements to
     changing circumstances
   TASKS OF INTERGOVERNMENTAL RELATIONS: II


• Fiscal/financial issues: sorting out revenue and expenditure
  arrangements

• Negotiating fiscal transfers, typically from the federal to
  provincial and regional governments

• Regulating intergovernmental competition, policy overlap,
  policy coordination
                     SOME EXAMPLES

• Germany and South Africa: IGR as a constitutional principle:

   – Germany – Bundestreue – cooperative governance and
     loyalty to the federation
   – South Africa – Chapter 3 Cooperative Government –
     governments to “cooperate with one another in mutual trust
     and good faith.”

• Germany: the upper house as an IGR institution

• India, Malaysia: financial commissions and councils

• Canada: informal processes of executive federalism
             IGR IN THE IRAQI FEDERATION


• To be discussed by the group

				
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