Municipalities and Municipal Districts
Municipalities are the main administrative-territorial unit in the administrative-territorial division of Bulgaria where local self-government takes place.
The municipality is a legal entity and has the right to ownership and a separate municipal budget.
Local self-government represents the right and the real opportunity provided by the law for the citizens and their elected bodies to handle independently all affairs of local importance in the sphere of:
- municipal property, municipal enterprises, municipal finances, taxes and fees, municipal administration
- the structure and development of the territory of the municipality and the settlements in it
- town planning and improvement and communal activities
- social services
- the protection of the environment and the reasonable use of natural resources
- maintenance and preservation of cultural, historical and architectural monuments
- the development of sport, recreation and tourism
Local authorities are responsible for initiating and implementing horizontal policies and measures for the social inclusion and realization of beneficiaries of international protection on their territory. Upon request and interest, mayors of municipalities conclude an agreement on integration with beneficiaries of international protection. The municipalities declare readiness to accept a certain number of beneficiaries of international protection taking into account the situation on the labor market, the available qualification, demographic trends, prospects for development of the municipality and the presence of communities of foreigners to avoid segregation and concentration posing risks to the socio-economic stability and security.
In order to conclude an agreement on integration the mayor of the municipality shall submit an application to the State Agency for Refugees with the Council of Ministers. The mayor provides the State Agency for National Security with information on the number of concluded integration agreements as well as all available data on the foreigners with whom the agreements have been concluded.
The mayor of a municipality applying for an integration agreement or an official appointed by him shall do the following:
- organize the reception and assist with the accommodation of a foreigner and the members of his family
- enter the foreigner and the members of his family in the population register
- assist the foreigner in filing an application for Bulgarian personal documents
- provide assistance with registration at the Labour Office Directorate
- direct to the Social Assistance Directorate if necessary
- organize the development of an individual integration plan for a child who is a member of a foreigner’s family together with the Social Assistance Directorate and the legal representative of the child
- assists in providing access to other administrative services
- when registering a foreigner and the members of his / her family in the population register, if necessary, refer them to the Regional Education Directorate
- ensure and control the scope of children and pupils subject to compulsory pre-school and school education, including minors and underage foreigners with granted asylum or international protection
- inform about the possibilities of choosing a GP on the territory of the municipality
- notify the Ministry of the Interior and the State Agency for Refugees with the Council of Ministers of the concluded agreements on integration, the terminated agreements and the grounds for their termination
- notify the relevant regional health inspectorate and the health insurance fund for the concluded integration agreements
- provide opportunities for practising sports and taking part in sporting events
- monitor the implementation of the integration agreement
National non-governmental organizations in the sphere of local self-government are:
- National Association of Municipalities in the Republic of Bulgaria (NAMRB)
- National Association of the Secretaries of the Municipalities of the Republic of Bulgaria (NASO RB)
- National Association of the Chairs of Municipal Councils in the Republic of Bulgaria