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Citizen & community participation in the management and protection of river watersheds: practices, access to decision-making and to legislation
PHARE ACCESS
Objectives: Implement the 1999 Water Act’s citizen participation clauses relating to river management, thereby implanting associated citizens in the decision process.

Activities:
1. Production of clear picture of degree of compatibility between Water Act and relevant EU legislation and directives (eg. the Waters Directive of 2000), and formulation of realistic practices to resolve problems of non-compatibility;

2. Production of clear picture of reasons for the non-implementation of the 1999 Water Act as regards river management and citizen involvement;

3. Formulation of realistic proposals for legislative and administrative initiatives (national and municipal) to implement the citizen-participation components of the Water Act on the basis of best- and worst-practices analysis of government policy and of existing NGO experience: of Yantra Watershed Council (disintegrated) and the Varbitsa Watershed Council (functions under the Water Act);

4. Media debate; 5. Training of key actors – officials and environment groups.

Key results:
1. Legislation proposals and administrative procedures presented to new Parliament and Government to begin implementing Water Act;

2. Administrative practices proposed to participating Municipalities to involve public in river management;

3. Public awareness;

4. Providing officials and environmentalists with co-operation and result-getting skills, thereby leading to durable dialogue.

  
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