News and events
USAID Now Partnering With 25 Local Governments to Fight Corruption
January 29, 2021
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) signed Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) with twelve municipalities – Varvarin, Čajetina, Krupanj, Priboj, Inđija, Ljubovija, Bela Palanka, Šid, Veliko Gradište, Požega, Sremski Karlovci and Mionica, to strengthen transparent, inclusive and accountable local governance and bolster anti-corruption efforts. By signing the Memoranda, these municipalities joined the USAID Government Accountability Initiative, which has been supporting local governments in improving transparency, increasing public participation in municipal decision making, fighting corruption, improving financial controls and public services over last three years. With the 12 new municipalities, the total number of local governments USAID is cooperating with within this project has reached 25.
Serbia’s State Audit Institution Reports Deficiencies in Social Protection Service for Children’s Personal Companions; Decline in Afforestation; and Management of Systems for Unified Billing in Public Utility Companies
January 28, 2021
On January 26, the State Audit Institution released the results of three recent performance audits.
SAI reported that local self-governments did not undertake sufficient measures to provide and supervise delivery of the support needed for large numbers of children in need of personal companion services. In its report entitled Services in the Field of Social Welfare – Personal Companion of a Child SAI concluded that personal companion services were not established by 33% of cities and municipalities in Serbia in 2019. In nearly 29 local self-governments, where this service was established, services were provided by unlicensed organizations, which raised questions about the quality of services provided. Inefficient and inadequate provision of services resulted from the lack of planning and financial resources in the budgets of local governments for the implementation of this service. In addition, the lack of local regulations, a small number of licensed organizations to provide services, and insufficient monitoring created the risk of inefficient provision and deprived children of needed services.
Serbia’s State Audit Institution: Ministry of Education Management of School Modernization Program and Local Self-Governments’ Collection of Own-source Revenues in Need of Attention
January 21, 2021
On January 19, the State Audit Institution released the results of two of its 2020 performance audits revealing the need for the Government to increase its attention to address deficiencies in management of the School Modernization Program and insufficient collection of own-source revenues in Local self-governments in Serbia.
Support to Local Governments to Improve their Information Booklets
January 18, 2021
Government Accountability Initiative (GAI) provided technical assistance to the City of Sombor and the Municipality of Žabalj to improve their Information Booklets. Information Booklet is one of the main tools ensuring transparency of local governments, and also the document from which citizens can learn all important information about their municipality in one place. With the support of Transparency Serbia, these two local governments were provided with a detailed analysis of their Information Booklets, their compatibility with the Law on Free Access to Information of Public Importance and Instruction for the preparation and publication of Information Booklets, as well as their structure, content, and the process of its updating. Based on the analysis, detailed recommendations were developed and will be used by both local governments in the preparation of a new, improved Booklet template during the course of 2021.
Serbia’s State Audit Institution Identifies Environmental Protection and Internal Controls in Need of Increased Government Attention
January 15, 2021
On January 12, the State Audit Institution (SAI) revealed the results of two of its 2020 performance audits revealing the need for the Government to increase its attention to address environmental protection concerns and internal control deficiencies in central level institutions in Serbia.
City of Kragujevac Adopted New Internal Acts to Comply with Public Procurement Law
January 13, 2021
With the support of Government Accountability Initiative, the City of Kragujevac adopted new internal acts in order to harmonize internal procedures and organizational processes in its municipal departments with the provisions of the new Public Procurement Law. The Law, whose implementation started on July 1, 2020, has introduced a number of new instruments and tools for conducting public procurement procedures, including a range of new competences of state authorities in this area. All newly-introduced provisions aim to ensure better management of public procurements, savings and optimal use of public funds, combating misuse and better competitiveness. In accordance with the Law and the model provided by GAI, the internal acts regulate in more detail the manner of conducting a public procurement procedure, the procurements not covered by the law, monitoring of the execution of concluded public procurement contracts and responsibility for lawful, professional and timely actions.