LOGOS supports its partner municipalities in the field of own source revenues (OSR). These are revenues which a municipality can collect on itself as based on the Law on Local Government Finances, such as municipal taxes, fees and other payments for public services provided by the municipality. LOGOS support to increase own source revenues has progressed in several phases. In 2010, LOGOS first facilitated the analysis of the revenue base and revenue potentials of its partner municipalities. These assessments have allowed guiding and advising municipal officials on resource mobilization and regular information and communication with citizens. They have also allowed to identify property tax as priority field of work.
The LOGOS Bridging Phase 2013 supported municipalities in their efforts for increased property tax collection and disseminated best practices of this Kosovo wide in cooperation with AKM.
|17 ways to increase your property tax revenues – 2013|
In 2009, none of the partner municipalities had a viable and realistic analysis of its own revenue base and potential for the future, LOGOS therefore facilitated the analysis of sources of municipal revenues over the period 2007-2011 and the potential for increasing municipal revenues for the period 2011-2016. LOGOS experts made an assessment based on historical data, field visits and discussions with municipal officials. The reports produced should be seen as an independent outside evaluation of the municipal performance in generating OSR and in estimating the municipal potential for OSR in the future. The reports comprise assumptions about shortcomings in tax collection for each municipality independently and suggestions for the areas where an increase of own source revenues can be generated by the municipality. On the basis of these reports LOGOS has furthermore identified property tax as the first field of work for 2011.
As derived from the analysis reports on own source revenues, the highest potential for growth of municipal own revenues lies within an increased collection of property taxes. The problems in the field of property tax collection are several. First an important amount of properties are not registered and thus escape invoicing and second municipalities still have difficulties in enforcing the payment of taxes.Based on the above, LOGOS first supported municipalities in registering unregistered objects/ properties. In this respect a training was first conducted in partnership with the Ministry of Finance on what types of objects are subject to property tax and on how to register them. Trained municipal teams were then sent to the field in order to verify available data and register unregistered objects. This support has shown clear results and all partner municipalities have reported an increase o fobjects subject to the payment of property tax.
Results in the registration of unregistered objects
This update of the municipal database allows municipalities to have a clearer picture as to what financial returns can be expected from property tax. This has also led LOGOS and partner municipalities to adapt and precise the targets for 2012. LOGOS currently works with its partner municipalities on measures and incentives to improve the payments of invoices.
As shown in the above, the methodology proposed by LOGOS to “register unregistered objects” and thus to update municipal databases has allowed for very tangible results. LOGOS and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation have decided to share these positive developments with partners and other interested actors working in the field of local governance in order to favor the replication of the methodology. As a result of these discussions, the Ministry of Finance, the USAID – DEMI project and LOGOS will support the rest of Kosovo municipalities in updating their database and implementing the methodology previously implemented in LOGOS partner municipalities. This process started in April 2012. LOGOS will directly support 11 municipalities.
LOGOS further assists its partner municipalities through a variety of project activities. This for instance included a study tour to Hungary in July 2010 for municipal officials. Mayors and directors of finance received an intensive three day training on the topic of local taxes, with the objective to develop municipal capacities in increasing own source revenues. An additional objective of the study tour was to confront municipal officials with other methodologies that could either be replicated in or serve as sources of inspiration for improving municipal taxes’ collection rate in Kosovo.
In addition, LOGOS organizes bi-annual meetings on exchange of best practices in the field of Own Source Revenues. These workshops gather municipal finance departments of all partner municipalities and allow comparing and sharing the methodologies and procedures used at the municipal level for improved collection of OSR
What can be done to increase collection of property tax in Kosovo? This was the main topic addressed during the Property Tax Conference, which was held on 13 December 2012 in Prishtina with the support of SDC & LOGOS. The Conference brought together about 100 participants, representing the Ministry of Finance, AKM, Mayors, Local Governments, Economists and International Organisations.
Heqja e participimit qytetar lehtëson arkëtimin e mjeteve nga tatami në pronë – Koha Ditore, 16.04.2013
Komunat kundër zvogëlimit të buxhetit të tyre nga 10 në 8 për qind – Koha Ditore, 02.04.2013
Komunat duan pavarësi nga qendra – Tribuna, 23.03.2013
Komunat kërkojnë pavarësi financiare – Zëri, 16.03.2013
Komunat kamuflojnë të hyrat vjetore nga tatimi në prone – Koha Ditore – 13.12.2012
Tatimi në pronë sfidon punën e komunave qe 12 vjet – Koha Ditore – 28.09.2012
OSR – Komunat aktivizohen ndaj fshehësve të pronave – Zeri – 15.09.2012
Komunat nisin me regjistrimin e pronave të paregjistruara – Gazeta Bota Sot – 10.09.2012
Zyrtarët komunalë trajnohen për regjistrimin e pronave të paregjistruara, website of the Municipality of Gjilan, 16.05.2012
Ndërmarrjet shoqërore të Vitisë borxhlinjtë më të mëdhenj të Komunës, Ibrahim Sefedini, Koha Ditore, 13.01.2012
Pasojat e procesit buxhetor, Besiana Xharra, Zëri.info, 13.11.2011
LOGOS ndihmon komunën e Novobërdës në regjistrimin e pronave të pa regjistruara, website of the municipality of Novo Brdo/Novobërdë, 07.07.2011
Nis registrimi i objekteve të paregjistruara, by Ekrem Raka, Koha Ditore, 19.06.2011
Në katër komuna nis registrimi i pronave të paregjistruara, by Ibrahim Sefedini, Koha Ditore, 16.06.2011
Planet e dëmshme të Qeverisë, Besiana Xharra, Zëri.info, 15.01.2011
Zyrtarët komunalë trajnohen për regjistrimin e pronave të paregjistruara, web-faqja e komunës së Gjilanit, 16.05.2012
LOGOS Bridging Phase 2013 supported AKM and its Finance Collegia in their lobbying for the upcoming revision of the law on local finance. This was done in coordination with the EU project “European Cooperation for Stronger Municipalities” and USAID/DEMI. As a result of this cooperation, a report analyzing the structure of municipal finances, and conducting a ‘reality check’ on the resources available to municipalities relative to the demands placed upon them, was produced.