Vushtrri, a pilot municipality for the new leadership

Within the series of meetings with the local leadership, the representatives of KLGI Institute were welcomed by the Mayor of Vushtrri - Mr. Xhafer Tahiri, the Deputy Mayor -Besim Buzaqi and the Chairperson of the Municipal Assembly - Mr. Nasuf Aliu.

During the meeting, Mr. Tahiri initially congratulated the new leadership for displaying a highly cooperative spirit, given that the coalition in this municipality represents a unique model for overcoming political differences.

Tahiri pointed out that the Municipality of Vushtrri can offer the example of how cooperation and shared vision results in strengthened democracy at the local level. Beyond this statement, the new leadership has a serious obligation not only to represent the subjects, but to also promote a new culture of governance. For personalities with political background at the central level, this situation represents a pilot test on how they encounter local challenges.

Apart from the areas of intervention through the SSSM Project, the representatives of the KLGI Institute have shown their commitment in designing a new approach for support towards the municipalities. The main goal of this approach is to draft a transformative agenda by making a shift from administrative services into a developing and strategic goal-oriented governance.

Within this context, the KLGI Institute together with political and sectorial representatives at the local level, are currently engaged in developing a platform that will set strategic goals in the new decade of the decentralization process. The platform will not only serve as a mechanism in support of municipalities, but above all it aims to strengthen the European foundations at the local level. Further, it is highly significant to achieve clarity and understanding between the political levels, whether in the visionary or structural aspect.

On this basis, there are numerous matters that should be taken into account. First, the focus of central institutions in developing the local level should highly increase through policies, legislation or funding. Simultaneously, the local level should project new standards with regard to democratization, sustainable development, social cohesion and service delivery. A new planning approach should also be taken into account considering that municipalities have already achieved results in infrastructure development.

Hence, opening up new paths for investments in master development plans would avoid the fragmentation of policies and the budget. Further, the focus would be based on the sustainable development of the projected areas. With this regard, importance should also be placed on the polycentric development, urban aesthetics and innovation in policy and project development.