eesti keeles

Press Releases
Open in print mode

The President of the Republic delivered a speech at the seminar of Pärnu County’s local authorities

President Rüütel today participated in the seminar of Pärnu County’s local authorities that was held in the Lepanina Motel at Kabli. In his speech delivered at the seminar, the Head of State dealt with problems and tasks of Estonian local government.

Opening the seminar, the President of the Republic said that local government is based on value principles that have been cemented in a time-honored process of development, and it functions as a link between the state and civil society, hence it has become the main guarantee for society’s stable development. “Secondly, local government is the main pillar of democratic governance. Local government has to confront problems and offer solutions that determine the quality of our life, including safe living environment,” the Head of State said.

President Rüütel also touched upon the last five year’s activity of the Presidential Roundtable on Local Government and Regional Development, and said, inter alia, that it has enabled to bring the issues related to the development of local government to the very center of state power on a regular basis. “The members of the Roundtable have had an opportunity to directly meet various ministers and scientists and get information about the experience of development of local government in other countries,” the Head of State said.

Talking about the local governments’ expanded domain of responsibilities, the President of the Republic said that the expansion of responsibilities did not broaden local governments’ possibilities to fulfill their new tasks as required. “At the level of state power, it is important to understand that ultimately it is how pre-school and basic education is organized, how social assistance is secured and how safe and good is living environment that determines the people’s attitude towards their state and the activities of state authorities. On the other hand, the speed of society’s continuous development directly depends on how the issues within the domain of local government’s responsibilities are solved,” the Head of State emphasized.

In his speech, President Rüütel also highlighted the importance of inter-institutional, cross-border and regional cooperation. Among the current practical issues that are waiting to be solved and could not be avoided, the Head of State singled out the need to secure a stable local governments’ revenue base together with necessary legal guarantees, intentional transfer of the land not necessary for the fulfillment of the functions of the state to municipal ownership, and promotion of local government related scientific research work.

In his speech, the President of the Republic also touched upon the actual problems in the field of education and public health. “A number of praiseworthy measures meant to increase birth rate will run in idle gear when not everyone who wishes to get a kindergarten place can find one and when the dropping out from basic school will continue at the same rate. Obviously, the establishment of child care institutions and organizing of pre-school education needs support from the state within the framework of special programmes. In critical demographic situation that is felt, first of all, on local level, it is necessary to attach special attention also to every single case of dropping out from basic school and every basic school graduate who has been abandoned to one’s fate. It is necessary to critically review specialties taught in vocational schools in order to guarantee the development of knowledge-based society, to satisfy the needs of regional enterprise, and, at the same time, to offer young people new interesting challenges,” the Head of State said.

This was the twelfth seminar of local authorities of Pärnu County.

Public Relations Department of the Office of the President
Kadriorg, August 17, 2006

© 2006 Office of the President l tel: + 372 631 6202 l fax: + 372 631 6250 l