What is the role of local government – Essay Example
Role of Local Government in the Federal System Role of Local Government in the Federal System A local government is the lowest level of administration and a form of public administration in a given state. The actions of a local government should be within the powers delegated through legislation by the constitution or through orders from higher levels of government (Marx, 1982). This paper aims at analyzing the roles of the local government in the administration of duties as prescribed by the constitution and the powers assigned to them to aid the government. The question on the role of the local government has a relation to the city is that a city is a name given to the local government in certain places. The other names include district, province, region, department, and town among other names used in different places.
The roles played by the local government in the federal system including ensuring health facilities are provided and maintained for the people in the jurisdiction of the local government. The local government has to ensure the presence of health services and maintaining them to a high level of efficacy and effectiveness. The other role is that the local government has to ensure that the population provides and maintains primary, adult, and vocational education to the residence of the area. The local government has a role for the development of natural resources and agriculture for the benefit of all the members of the local government. This is however with the exception of exploiting minerals, which is reserved for the national government.
The other roles of the local government is ensuring the fire protection services is available for the residents through building fire station locations and equipping them with vehicles and fie appliances. The local government has a role of maintaining the fire appliances and providing enough human resource. The local government has the function of levying duties or local taxes for them to be able to run the local government and provide the necessary human services, fire, education, and health services for the people. Waste collection in the area is another role of the local government to ensure the area under their jurisdiction is clean and environmental friendly for the locals under their jurisdiction. Planning of the town is the other role of the local government to ensure the growth of the town is in tandem with the needs of the people and the needs of the local government for the efficiency in ensuring roads, water provision, sewerage system, communication lines, and electricity can be supplied well.
Provision of public recreation facilities for the members of the community to have a place to socialize and interact in terms of playing fields, parks, and other recreation facilities for the people are the other roles of local government. Ensuring that the streets in the local government are well lighted is another role of the local government to avoid security concerns for the people within their jurisdiction. Immunization of people, recycling of wastes, and ensuring the control of pests within their jurisdiction are the other roles for the local government to perform.
However, there are shortcomings in the ability of the local government to deliver the functions outlined above to the people. One of the shortcomings is the mismanagement of meager resources in the local government by those in control as they use them for personal benefit and not for the development of the community and the provision of benefits for the community. The other reason for the reason for the shortcomings is that local governments have not had major impacts on the lives of the people owing to fewer funds disbursed by the national government and the funds from taxes are not enough for the running of local government activities. The central government does not provide enough funds for the local government to run all activities to positively impact on the lives of the people. The central government controls the actions of the local government and directs them to achieve the roles they direct affect the ability of the local governments to function properly and with efficiency.
I recommend that the autonomy of the local government and the central government should be maintained to ensure there is no interference between the two levels of the government (OSullivan, 2012). Legislation that ensures the autonomy of the two levels of government should be instituted and followed by all regardless of level for the local government to function in an efficient and productive manner. The second recommendation is that the policies against corruption in the local government should be instituted to ensure resources are used well for the benefit of the people. This will limit misappropriation of resources that will be used to provide infrastructure and other essential services for the people (Morphet, (2008).
In conclusion, the local government has roles to play in ensuring the running of the government is maintained at the local level. The main reason for the local government to perform the above functions is that it is the level of government that it is near the people most. The ability to reach the people and deliver the services with efficiency ensure makes it the best level of government to perform these duties. The other reason is that the local government is mandated by the constitution to perform these duties.
Marx, H. L. (1962). State and local government. New York: H.W. Wilson Co.
Morphet, J. (2008). Modern local government. Los Angeles: Sage.
OSullivan, A. (2012). Urban economics. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.
Symposium on the Role of Local Government in National Development, & Central Treaty Organization. (1966). Symposium on the Role of Local Government in National Development: [papers. Ankara: Office of U.S. Economic Coordinator for CENTO Affairs.
United States Conference of Mayors., Conley, G., United States., National Community Development Association., & Urban Land Institute. (1979). Economic development: New roles for city government : a guidebook for local government. Washington: U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development.