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GOVERNING REGULATIONS OF THE MUNICIPAL COUNCIL FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND SUSTAINABILITY

(Approved by agreement of the Plenary Council, initially on 21 March and definitively on 29 May 1997 and in force since 11 July 1997)

Chapter I
General provisions

Article 1

The Municipal Council for the Environment and Sustainability is a consultative body on which are represented different sectors of society. It is attached to the Environment and Sustainability Policy Committee. It was created in accordance with the following articles: Article 12 of the Governing Regulations on Citizen Participation, articles 59 and 60 of the Municipal Law and of local government in Catalonia.

The Council was created by Barcelona City Council with the aim of contributing, within the sphere of its competencies, to compliance with the mandate enshrined in Article 9.2 of the Spanish Constitution.
The creation of the Council also responds to the spirit of Agenda 21, drawn up at the Earth Summit (Rio de Janeiro, 1992) and the Charter of the European Cities towards Sustainability (Aalborg Charter).

Article 2

The purposes of the Municipal Council of the Environment and Sustainability are:

To encourage, promote and provide a vehicle for citizen participation in the process of drawing up and implementing the Barcelona Local Agenda 21.
To publish reports and proposals on the environment and urban sustainability and the policies of the governing bodies of Barcelona City Council, and on the broad issues considered by the Municipal Council for the Environment And Sustainability.
To promote and strengthen co-operation between associations and organisations engaged in the above-mentioned fields.
To promote initiatives for environmental and sustainability studies and analyses.
To analyse and assess the situation regarding the drawing up and implementation of the Barcelona Local Agenda 21.
To inform, debate and make public issues relating to the drawing up and implementation of the Barcelona Local Agenda 21.
The Council is a consultative, participatory body. In consequence, its resolutions will have the status of recommendations for the municipal organs of government. Nevertheless, these must give reasoned responses to all recommendations which are rejected or modified.

Article 3

The Council will promote the strengthening of civil society in Barcelona and in particular the associational movement in all its manifestations of progress, consolidating the new relations between Barcelona City Council and social movements.

Article 4

The Municipal Council to the Environment and Sustainability will begin its activity by developing action related to the Barcelona Local Agenda 21.

Chapter II
Organisation and functioning

Article 5

The Council may function through the Plenary Council or through a Standing Committee.

Article 6

The composition of the Plenary Council of the Environment and Sustainability Policy Committee is as follows:

  • For Barcelona City Council: 13 councillors in proportion to the composition of the Plenary Council: 13 technicians forming part of Barcelona City Council personnel.
  • For other administrations: 5
  • For civic organisations: 8
  • For ecologist, environmentalist groups: 13
  • For associations promoting the renewable energies: 4
  • Workers' representatives and business and proprietors' association representatives: 7
  • For businesses engaged in the field of sustainability: 7
  • For water, energy and communications utility companies: 13
  • For expert groups: 9
  • For professional associations: 4
  • For the universities: 4

Members are to be designated by the mayor in the number and representation stipulated in Article 6, Section 1. Should the proposer of the designation not be stated, it is understood that the proposal is made by the Councillor-President of the Municipal Council for the Environment And Sustainability.

Non-individual members must have formal legal status.

The secretary will be nominated by the mayor at the proposal of the Councillor-President of the Environment and Sustainability Policy Committee after consideration of the Council's proposals. The secretary's tasks will be to support the work of the Council under the direction of the Presidency. The secretary will have a voice, but not a vote.

The Council secretary, nominated by the mayor at the proposal of the Councillor-President of the Environment and Sustainability Policy Committee, will also be the secretary of the Plenary Committee, the Standing Committee and the working parties. The secretary will have a voice in questions put to him/her, but not a vote: he/she will be a member of the staff of Barcelona City Council.

The president may also invite experts and persons of recognised prestige to attend meetings, with voice but no vote.

No type of economic compensation whatever will be made to representatives for their services on the Municipal Council of the Environment and Sustainability.

Article 7

The Council's president will be the mayor of Barcelona.

The first vice-presidency will correspond to the Councillor-President of the Municipal Council of the Environment and Sustainability.

The three co-vice-presidencies correspond to:
a) The vice-president of the Municipal Council for the Environment and Sustainability.
b) The vice-president representing groups c, d and e on the Plenary Council.
c) The vice-president representing groups f, g and h on the Plenary Council.


Article 8

The composition of the Standing Committee will be as follows:

- The Council president
- The Council vice-president
- The secretaries
- 25 other members, designated by the president:

a) 5 for Barcelona City Council, one representing each Municipal group.
b) 2 for civic organisations.
c) 5 for ecologist, environmentalist and renewable energy associations.
d) 3 for the world of work and property.
e) 2 for the world of companies for sustainability.
f) 4 for water, energy and communications utility companies.
g) 2 for the group of experts.
h) 1for professional associations.
i) 1 for the universities.

The Council vice-president may chair the Standing Committee by delegation of the president.

Institutional representatives may delegate their representation, provided this is announced previously and in writing.

Article 9

The Council will have a technical secretary to provide support services.
The technical secretary will work under the direction of the Council technical secretary.

Article 10

The Municipal Council of the Environment and Sustainability will produce an annual report which will be presented to the Barcelona City Council Plenary Council for its information.

Chapter II
Functioning


Article 11

In view of its functions and to ensure effective operation, the Council may function in Plenary Committee, Standing Committee and Working Parties.

The representatives of groups b, c, d, e, f, g, h and i in Article 8 will be designated for two year terms on a rotary basis to allow all institutions and organisations to take part in the work of the Standing Committee and to optimise the work of the Council.

The co-vice-presidents not representing the institutions will be subject to the same stipulation.

The number and composition of the working parties will be established by the Standing Committee according to the working lines and/or priorities for action established by the Council.

The working parties will be made up of Council members and/or persons proposed by the Council as experts in the different subjects studied.
The working parties will present the results of their work and their reports to the Standing Committee, which will duly inform the Plenary Council.
Working group co-ordinators will also be invited to attend meetings of the Standing Committee as observers.

Chapter III
Sessions, agreements procedure

Article 12

The Plenary Municipal Council of the Environment and Sustainability will meet twice a year in ordinary session and in extraordinary session whenever the president considers it necessary or on request of one-quarter of its members.
Advance notice of two weeks will be given for ordinary sessions. This notice will be accompanied by the agenda and, if appropriate, any documentation. Minimum notice of extraordinary session is forty-eight hours.

Article 13

The Standing Committee will meet at least every two months.
Meetings will be announced at least one week in advance except in cases of emergency considered justifiable by the president.

Article 14

In view of the more specific nature of the work of working parties, their meetings can be organised on a more flexible basis suited to the urgency of each individual subject.

The president of the Standing Committee is responsible for calling and co-ordinating working group meetings, though he/she may also delegate this responsibility to the secretary when he/she considers this appropriate.

Article 15

The quorum necessary for sessions of the Plenary Council and the Standing Committee of the Municipal Council of the Environment And Sustainability is one-third of all members and one-half of all members, respectively.

Article 16

Agreements, both by the Plenary Council and the Standing Committee, will be adopted by majority vote of those present. Due to the Council's consultative status, individual votes can also be cast.
As far as possible, decisions taken by the Council, the Standing Committee and the working parties should be reached by consensus.

Article 17

The Council secretary will keep the minutes to all sessions, including records of agreements adopted and all appropriate interventions in order to ensure a faithful reflection of the session.

The minutes will be signed by the secretary with the approval of the president, and will be submitted for final approval at the beginning of the subsequent session.

Final disposition

For all that which is not provided for in these Regulations, the president of the Council will adopt the decision he/she considers most suitable in accordance with the general criteria inspiring the Governing Regulations of this Council, as well as the Governing Regulations for citizen participation, informing the Plenary Council at its next session for ratification of the same and, if necessary, proposing the corresponding amendment of the Regulations.