Development of municipal Annual Work Plans (AWP) for 18 enlarged municipalities
The Good Local Governance Programme South Caucasus advises and supports respective partner-organisations at national, regional (sub-national) and local levels in Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan in the implementation of cooperation initiatives towards improved local governance. It supports the improvement of frame conditions, addresses regional (sub-national) governance issues and works towards the improvement of municipal services and citizens’ participation at municipal level. In the context of the German international cooperation approach, the Programme’s objectives are oriented within the framework of the Caucasus Initiative; thus the improved professional exchange among the countries of the South Caucasus and their increasing cooperation are also objectives at regional South Caucasus level.
One result area of the Programme is the regional strengthening of municipalities with regard to management and administration, including service delivery, administrative capacity and participatory decision-making.
Background and purpose of the assignment
Over the previous programme period of 2014-2016, the Good Local Governance Programme South Caucasus Programme (LoGoPro) has been supporting Armenian consolidated municipalities in producing their five-year Municipal Development Plans (MDP), as well as inventory, analyses and prioritisation of their local economic development ideas.
Changing needs and priorities of the partner municipalities arising from the pace of territorial and administrative reforms in the country, coupled with inventory of the lessons learned over the recent past of the reforms have necessitated revisions in GIZ LoGoPro approaches to planning at national level.
The new law on local self-government adopted on 16 December 2016 institutes more functions and expects more capacities on the part of local authorities versus the superseded legislation. Mayors and community councils, local Civil Society Organisations and private stakeholders acquire more diverse weight and role in planning, budgeting, service delivery and administration. To this end, planning and M&E system become pivotal to enhancing capacities of local authorities as constituents of modern and democratic self-government.
In the context of territorial and administrative reforms underway in the country in general, and in planning and budgeting in particular, Annual Work Plans (AWP) are viewed as the most efficient and effective planning instruments enabling prudent, participatory and responsive management and comprehensive consolidation of local resources. Regional development planning framework in Armenia provides for design and implementation of AWPs at regional level. The latter enables making a step forward in harmonising local and regional (national) planning frameworks and 2 turning the planning and budget execution into a reciprocally complementary and unified system of public administration.
Currently, municipalities of Armenia are furnished with two major methodologies1 to follow in planning their socio-economic development patterns. Both of these recommended techniques lay sufficient grounds for more constructive and targeted planning of human, financial and infrastructural capital available to the LSGs. One of them is more oriented towards comprehensive socio-economic planning as expected by LSG law, the other is more focused on promoting business thinking and orientation of local authorities towards involvement of incremental funds to meet local needs and priorities.
In the context of this assignment the AWPs are viewed as tools to synthesize the two techniques and see equipment of local authorities with a living effective tool to plan, execute and monitor municipal socio-economic development framework as its outcome. The final impact expected on implementation of AWP practices at local level embraces instilled efficient local administration, appropriate prioritisation of needs, expansion of the service brackets delivered locally, enhancement of quality and accessibility of such services, as well as identification and attraction of additional funds into local economies and improve HR and training systems by conveying targeted and individualised nature thereto.
Scarce financial resources available to local governments in Armenia, coupled with inefficiency of their use and practical lack of M&E systems to follow development trends in municipalities, have degraded otherwise crucial significance of 5-year MDP plan into documents produce for the sole purpose of complying with legislative requirement. It is important to take note of the need to activate planning processes in the Armenian municipalities and secure evolutionary advancement towards perception of the plans as the main tools of democratic, participatory and transparent local self-government. In addition, detailing annual activities of the LSGs envisaged in the medium-term outlook (five year plans) into fungible and implementable annual work-plans will embed new culture of harmonisation of plans and budgets, as well as crystallise the actions to be taken by local administration with an objective to strategize local development, including economic.
Tasks and deliverables
All tasks set out below will be developed in consultation with the GIZ LoGoPro. The tasks of this assignment include, but are not limited to:
1. Develop a methodology for designing AWP incl. Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) framework at municipal level providing for harmonisation with similar process at regional level, as well as linkages with annual local budgets;
2. Develop an exemplary form of the AWP and related M&E framework based on the methodology; the exemplary AWP should be applicable in municipalities with a minimum population of over two thousand residents2 . This should be done with reference to the AWP framework implemented at regional level3 ;
3. Make a presentation of the draft methodology and exemplary AWP to the MTAD, GIZ LoGoPro and representatives of the 18 consolidated municipalities4 and refine the methodology and exemplary AWP as necessary;
4. Support the staff of the 18 consolidated municipalities in the development of their AWP. The support should be accompanied by sustainable capacity building measures (e.g. training, coaching) to enable beneficiaries to develop AWPs in the period beyond this assignment;
5. Support the staff of the 18 consolidated municipalities to design and implement the M&E framework based on the developed methodology and AWP. This measure shall be an integral component of planning and budgeting processes at local level with reference to the budget M&E indicator framework developed with support of GIZ LoGoPro;
6. Organise and hold concluding presentation of the implemented assignment with participation of officials representing MTAD, 18 target municipalities, as well as the clusters subject to consolidation in 2017 and beyond5;
7. Develop a summary report on the implementation of the assignment, including analytical recommendations to GIZ LoGoPro on next steps, bottlenecks and areas requiring further attention. The report should in particular entail:
- Recommendations to the GIZ LoGoPro and MTAD on institutionalisation of AWP framework in the government processes and on harmonisation with concurrent activities supported by other donors (EU, ADB, etc.);
- Recommendations to the MTAD on securing awareness of the AWP process and engagement of all able resources at local level;
The results expected by the end of this assignment will include:
- Methodology for designing AWP;
- AWPs designed and approved at local level in 18 municipalities;
- M&E frameworks designed and instituted in 18 municipalities;
- Summary report on the implementation of the assignment as per activity nr. 7.
The assignment is planned to commence in April 2017 and finish by end of October 2017. The exact commencement date and schedule of activities/work plan will be agreed at a later stage.
The experts will directly report to GIZ LoGoPro on the progress and completion of the tasks.
Selection criteria for consultancy firms for the AWP assignment
1. Demonstrated knowledge of local government system in the region (e.g. Eastern Partnership Countries) and in Armenia particularly;
2. Demonstrated experience of working in LSG sector in transition economies;
3. Demonstrated knowledge and practical experience in methods of planning and budgeting and M&E;
4. Demonstrated knowledge and experience of institutionalising pilots into administration and government procedures;
5. Demonstrated knowledge and experience in local economic development;
6. Proven experience in cooperating with international and donor organisations operating in development business.