1st July 2013

Direct Election of Mayors discussed by the Government

At its last session on 26 June, the Government discussed a private members’ Bill dealing with the direct election of mayors. The Bill should actually amend the Constitution as the municipal autonomy is stipulated there. The Bill, proposed by TOP09, Mayors and Independents respectively (a coalition partner of TOP09), should introduce the mayoral direct election in the smallest municipalities. The aim of the Bill is to decrease post-electoral troubles containing the inability of the Municipal Board to (indirectly) elect the mayor. The Bill also stipulates that in those municipalities with the direct election of the mayor, the Municipal Council should not be set up. In those cases, the mayor should assume the responsibility of executive power within the municipality. The Bill also stipulates that the mayoral election should concord with local election. The electoral term of four years should remain unchanged.  
However, several Ministries has raised objections to the Bill. Primarily, the Ministry of Interior claims that the Bill should not be promulgated before the next local election (in 2014) with regards to the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission on Constitutional Stability. Other Ministries criticized the relative needlessness of such amendment.
The Bill is heading to the Chamber of Deputies.
For further information, click here (explanatory report, commentary procedure).

Members of the American Chamber of Commerce in the Czech Republic