|Signed||15 October 1985|
|Effective||1 September 1988|
|Parties||46 (all Council of Europe member states)|
|Depositary||Secretary General of the Council of Europe|
|Languages||English and French|
|European Charter of Local Self-Government at Wikisource|
The European Charter of Local Self-Government was adopted under the auspices of the Congress of the Council of Europe and was opened for signature by the Council of Europe's member states on 15 October 1985. All Council of Europe member states are parties to the Charter. New member states of the Council of Europe are expected to ratify the Charter at the earliest opportunity.
The Charter commits the ratifying member states to guaranteeing the political, administrative and financial independence of local authorities. It provides that the principle of local self-government shall be recognised in domestic legislation and, where practicable, in the constitution. Local authorities are to be elected by universal suffrage, and it is the earliest legal instrument to set out the principle of subsidiarity.
Local authorities, acting within the limits of the law, are to be able to regulate and manage a substantial share of public affairs under their own responsibility in the interests of the local population. The Charter considers that public responsibilities should be exercised preferably by the authorities closest to the citizens, a higher level being considered only when the co-ordination or discharge of duties is impossible or less efficient at the level immediately below. To this end, the Charter sets out the principles concerning the protection of local authorities' boundaries, the existence of adequate administrative structures and resources for the carrying out of their tasks, the conditions under which responsibilities are to be exercised, the financial resources of local authorities and the legal protection of local self-government. It limits the administrative supervision of local authorities' activities to the verification of lawfulness only.
The principles of local self-government contained in the Charter apply to all categories of local authorities. Ratifying states undertake to consider themselves bound by at least twenty paragraphs of Part I of the Charter, including at least ten from among the following:
In 2009, a protocol to the Charter (on the right to participate in the affairs of a local authority) was adopted. It entered into force on 1 June 2012. 
The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities has developed a database named "Carta-Monitor". This database provides access to the analysis, article by article, carried out during the Congress' monitoring missions in the 46 Member States. It also allows for comparative analysis on several articles and countries, as well as statistical research on ratifications of articles and compliance with their implementation. 
Every report on the application of the Charter in member states or the local elections that the Congress has observed can be consulted on the Congress' web site.
The Council of Europe has constituted a consultative body called the Group of Independent Experts on the European Charter, consisting of senior academics. The Group meets twice a year to consider a range of matters related to the European Charter of Local Self-Government, and it also provides legal advice and support to the elected members of the Congress of the Council of Europe who undertake a programme of missions to monitor the situation of local and regional democracy in member states of the Council.
The Group is currently considering, through a working group, the question of the possible revision of the Charter, in liaison with the Secretariat and the Rapporteur of the Congress.
The European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages (ECRML) is a European treaty adopted in 1992 under the auspices of the Council of Europe to protect and promote historical regional and minority languages in Europe. However, the charter does not provide any criterion or definition for an idiom to be a minority or a regional language, and the classification stays in the hands of the national state.
The European Convention on Human Rights is an international convention to protect human rights and political freedoms in Europe. Drafted in 1950 by the then newly formed Council of Europe, the convention entered into force on 3 September 1953. All Council of Europe member states are party to the Convention and new members are expected to ratify the convention at the earliest opportunity.
The Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States is a treaty signed at Montevideo, Uruguay, on December 26, 1933, during the Seventh International Conference of American States. The Convention codifies the declarative theory of statehood as accepted as part of customary international law. At the conference, United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Secretary of State Cordell Hull declared the Good Neighbor Policy, which opposed U.S. armed intervention in inter-American affairs. The convention was signed by 19 states. The acceptance of three of the signatories was subject to minor reservations. Those states were Brazil, Peru and the United States.
A treaty is a formal, legally binding written agreement between actors in international law. It is usually made by and between sovereign states and international organizations, but can sometimes include individuals, business entities, and other legal persons. A treaty may also be known as an international agreement, protocol, covenant, convention, pact, or exchange of letters, among other terms. However, only documents that are legally binding on the parties are considered treaties under international law.
Devolution is the statutory delegation of powers from the central government of a sovereign state to govern at a subnational level, such as a regional or local level. It is a form of administrative decentralization. Devolved territories have the power to make legislation relevant to the area, thus granting them a higher level of autonomy.
In political science, an initiative is a means by which a petition signed by a certain number of registered voters can force a government to choose either to enact a law or hold a public vote in the legislature in what is called indirect initiative, or under direct initiative, where the proposition is put to a plebiscite or referendum, in what is called a Popular initiated Referendum or citizen-initiated referendum.
The Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe was an unratified international treaty intended to create a consolidated constitution for the European Union (EU). It would have replaced the existing European Union treaties with a single text, given legal force to the Charter of Fundamental Rights, and expanded qualified majority voting into policy areas which had previously been decided by unanimity among member states.
A charter is the grant of authority or rights, stating that the granter formally recognizes the prerogative of the recipient to exercise the rights specified. It is implicit that the granter retains superiority, and that the recipient admits a limited status within the relationship, and it is within that sense that charters were historically granted, and it is that sense which is retained in modern usage of the term.
The Copenhagen criteria are the rules that define whether a country is eligible to join the European Union. The criteria require that a state has the institutions to preserve democratic governance and human rights, has a functioning market economy, and accepts the obligations and intent of the EU.
Subsidiarity is a principle of social organization that holds that social and political issues should be dealt with at the most immediate level that is consistent with their resolution.
The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) is a multilateral treaty adopted by the United Nations General Assembly (GA) on 16 December 1966 through GA. Resolution 2200A (XXI), and came in force from 3 January 1976. It commits its parties to work toward the granting of economic, social, and cultural rights (ESCR) to the Non-Self-Governing and Trust Territories and individuals, including labour rights and the right to health, the right to education, and the right to an adequate standard of living. As of July 2020, the Covenant has 171 parties. A further four countries, including the United States, have signed but not ratified the Covenant.
The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe or Committee of Ministers is the Council of Europe's decision-making body. It comprises the Foreign Affairs Ministers of all the member states, or their permanent diplomatic representatives in Strasbourg. It is both a governmental body, where national approaches to problems facing European society can be discussed on an equal footing, as well as a collective forum, where Europe-wide responses to such challenges are formulated. In collaboration with the Parliamentary Assembly, it is the guardian of the Council's fundamental values; it monitors member states' compliance with their undertakings.
In many parts of the world, local elections take place to select office-holders in local government, such as mayors and councillors. Elections to positions within a city or town are often known as "municipal elections". Their form and conduct vary widely across jurisdictions.
The Valletta Treaty is a multilateral treaty of the Council of Europe. The 1992 treaty aims to protect the European archaeological heritage "as a source of European collective memory and as an instrument for historical and scientific study". All remains and objects and any other traces of humankind from past times are considered to be elements of the archaeological heritage. The archaeological heritage shall include structures, constructions, groups of buildings, developed sites, moveable objects, monuments of other kinds as well as their context, whether situated on land or under water."
The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities is the pan-European political assembly representing local and regional authorities from the forty-six member states of the Council of Europe. Its role is to promote local and regional democracy, improve local and regional governance and strengthen authorities' self-government, according to the principles laid down in the European Charter of Local Self-Government. It is made up of two chambers, the Chamber of Local Authorities and the Chamber of Regions and holds its plenary sessions twice a year at the Palace of Europe in Strasbourg, where its permanent Secretariat is located.
The Chamber of Local Authorities is one of the two Chambers of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe. The Chamber is the voice of local authorities in the Council of Europe. It consists of 306 representatives from the Council's 46 member states, who either hold a general local authority mandate from direct elections or are politically accountable to a directly elected assembly. The Chamber provides an opportunity for local officials to discuss common concerns, share their experiences and develop relevant policies.
The Treaty of Lisbon is an international agreement that amends the two treaties which form the constitutional basis of the European Union (EU). The Treaty of Lisbon, which was signed by the EU member states on 13 December 2007, entered into force on 1 December 2009. It amends the Maastricht Treaty (1992), known in updated form as the Treaty on European Union (2007) or TEU, as well as the Treaty of Rome (1957), known in updated form as the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (2007) or TFEU. It also amends the attached treaty protocols as well as the Treaty establishing the European Atomic Energy Community (EURATOM).
The Constitutional law on the Modernisation of the Institutions of the Fifth Republic was enacted into French constitutional law by the Parliament of France in July 2008, to reform state institutions.
The law of Italy refers to the system of law across the Italian Republic. The Italian legal system has a plurality of sources of production. These are arranged in a hierarchical scale, under which the rule of a lower source cannot conflict with the rule of an upper source.
Andreas Kiefer is an Austrian politician. Since 2010, he is Secretary General of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe, an institution representing local and regional authorities of the 47 member states of the Council of Europe.
|Wikisource has original text related to this article:|