Basic theories of local government. Law on Local Self-Government

Basic theories of local government. Law on Local Self-Government

Local government is a logical responsemunicipal authorities on the increasing pressure of the leadership of the country, the expressed desire of people to solve at least some of their issues on the spot, rather than waiting every time for instructions from above (as a rule, it turns out to be incorrect, unreasonable and actually useless).

What is local government?

Some kind of uniform for all countries, formsproperty or government. The rights of local self-government can be either the broadest, allowing to make decisions that are meaningful for the settlement or the region, and insignificant, aimed exclusively at small elements and features of a specific population that the country's leadership does not want to understand. From the point of view of scientists Plokker K. and Kholis G., local self-government is granted to a separate territorial unit of the right to independently make important decisions for its inhabitants. The European Charter on Local Self-Government (approved in 1985) states that it is not only rights, but also the ability to perform its functions. In addition, the boundaries of all this are specified. So, any decisions taken and other features inherent only in some particular territory are obliged to be within the framework of laws common to all laws.

Do not confuse the concept of "local government"and "local government". In the first case, the conversation really goes about all of the above. But in the second one means the persons appointed by the top management whose task is to introduce the laws adopted at the state level in a certain territory.

In the Russian Federation, local self-government is regulated by law No. 131-FZ of 06.10.2003.

basic theory of local government

Short story

The first rudiments of localself-government can be attributed to the period of Ancient Greece and its cities-policies. However, it is impossible to call it completely true, because at that time the state was just such a city. So it is more accurate to call the period of the flourishing of the general principles of local self-government of Europe in the Middle Ages (approximately XI-XIII century). It was then, after a long period of decline due to the collapse of the Roman Empire, that cities again began to develop rapidly, and quickly enough came the understanding that power in the capital does not always correctly understand what will be better for a particular settlement.

For the first time something similar was documentedIt was decorated in Magdeburg (Germany) in 1188. Over the next centuries, similar norms spread to many other European cities. At the same time, as such, the notion of "self-government" first began to be used massively in France, during their revolutions. And finally, in official science the term "local self-government" arose in the 19th century from the submission of Rudolf Gneist.

There are various theories describingthe general principle of the work of this or that local society of people. On their basis, rights, opportunities and peculiarities of the work of territorial authorities dealing exclusively with their problems are built, but with an eye to the state as a whole.


The theory of free communities

Supporters of this system were such well-knownfigures like Ressler, Laband, Meyer, Arena and Gerber. Of all the major theories of local government, it stands out by calling for complete independence from the state, but recognizes its existence as such. So, it is believed that the community as such was formed much earlier than the country as a whole and therefore it is in the first place, and not vice versa. The only option in which the state is recognized as free communities is a federation that unites several groups of people.


  • Any official in the leadership of the community can not be state, but only local.
  • The community receives almost complete autonomy.
  • All problems are solved only at the territorial level.

As historical practice proves, thisthe system is not too viable. Disparate groups of people, even the largest, can only be organized in a few cases. Even if only in order to repel an external enemy. From history one can cite the example of Rzeczpospolita, where all the power was with local nobles and they created absolutely everything they wanted on their lands. The king was a decorative figure. As a result, internal disagreements, conflicts and unwillingness to act as a common front against the threat led to the fact that this once great power was destroyed and split into several smaller countries.

general principles of local self-government

Public theory

Such a system appeared a little later. It is very similar to the above one of the main theories of local government, but excludes the ability of the community to influence public policy. Only the economic and public issues remain in the jurisdiction of the local authorities, and they have no right to interfere in anything else. In turn, the state can influence its territorial units to a certain extent, forcing them to follow the general "party policy", but does not have authority in local issues. The law on local self-government strictly regulates who can and should do what.

Despite the high enough intelligence of theideas, in fact a society built on such a theory, is also not viable. Much depends on the strength of the central government or local rulers. As a rule, in the end, such a system smoothly passes into the free theory described above, or the state theory presented below.

law on local self-government

State theory

This is the most rigid and uncompromising optiondevelopment of the country. From other basic theories of local government, he is distinguished by the complete absence of local authorities as such. All management is appointed only from above and can work exclusively within the framework of the current legislation. In this case, the law on local self-government allows you to do something only within the framework that is not regulated by the state as a whole.

In the modern world such a structure of society can besee in the USA. There are common rules for all, federal laws and local authorities, which in fact can not do anything beyond that. On the one hand, such an approach is completely devoid of flexibility and does not take into account the interests of different communities. On the other hand, a competently built system does not require excessive microcontrolling in each settlement and the only thing that is required is to appoint a leadership whose task will be to follow the established laws. As the current practice proves, this is one of the most viable theories, although it has nothing in common with the freedom of the individual or the community (despite the entire US democracy).

activity of local self-government

Soviet theory

This is a more modern structure of society. As the basic theory of local government, it existed in the Soviet Union and is still successfully working in China, Vietnam, Cuba and North Korea. An interesting fact is that in fact such a system is not considered to be local self-government, but rather part of the state bodies delegated to territorial units. The main task of the community created by the Soviet theory is to activate the mechanisms set by the state and ensure the effective functioning of the entrusted settlement or region. As a rule, feedback is present, but in a minimal amount (although in fact it should be full).

In practice, such a system can be consideredthe most viable of all, presented above. If we do not take into account the collapse of the USSR, which happened for quite other reasons, and China, which is confidently becoming one of the leading world powers, in other cases this theory allows countries to live well even in almost complete isolation.

principles of organization of local self-government

Theory of dualism

In this case, municipal authorities work onsystem, adjacent to the state and social theories. On the one hand, all laws and decisions that are relevant to the country are binding and there can not be any workarounds. On the other hand, the activities of local self-government concerning the issues of arranging people right here and now are practically unlimited. The main thing is that the planned indicators were met, growth was seen and no problems.

The theory of social services

Among all the general principles of localmost interesting features of this system look. Its essence lies in the full provision of every single member of society with absolutely everything necessary. At the same time, the state retains the role of service personnel, who simply must take into account the demands of the country's residents and strive to fulfill them in every way possible. At the moment, this principle of organizing local government can be considered utopian and absolutely unviable. Such ideas can work and fully live only in a society striving for self-improvement and peaks, where the basic needs of each individual are harmoniously intertwined with the survival of the whole species and the further development of the state. In the modern world, this does not occur, unfortunately.

local government rights


Territorial local government lies in thebasis of any democracy. At least that's what it says. Nevertheless, modern forms of government are in fact extremely far from democratic and more like authoritarianism (with rare exceptions). Most of the freedoms of individual territories were in the same period of the Middle Ages, since the power of the king (or any other leader, as they are not called), although absolute, but constantly faced with numerous restrictions. For example, if you try to force a free city to do what it does not want, you could lose much more than you get (from tax cuts to the treasury and ending with a full-scale insurrection).

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