GECT (2) A POSITIVE OPPORTUNITY. WITH SOME OPEN QUESTIONS...

17/09/2019

We continue our journey around the "mysterious" object on which many hopes of Gorizia are pinned. Tomorrow a post will explain the projects in progress and the state of realization.

The GECT, as mentioned in the first article, is an instrument of cross-border cooperation, which needs funding to operate. Previously, we listed several projects, three of which, which we will explain tomorrow, are priorities. With this in mind, this post aims to shed more light on where the funding comes from and, at the same time, to analyse the results achieved so far.

Usually, the projects are financed mostly or entirely by the European Union, while national co-financing is not a priori excluded. Today, the main projects ("Salute-Zdravstvo" and Isonzo-Soča - Health and Riverside projects), which have the title of ITI (Integrated Territorial Investment) projects, are subject to European and national co-financing of 85% and 15% respectively. Being European, the funds are subject to budget variations, a European budget that is drawn up once in seven years, giving certain stability to the whole economic system that depends on it. Without going into detail, the seven-year budget (which is now the subject of strong debate), rules that Member States guarantee around one per cent of their GDP each year. Of course, during the accounting (budgetary) period, it is up to the member states to win as much as possible from the funds present. The GECT, let's face it, has managed in recent years to secure sums that would otherwise be practically impossible to raise, taking into account the financial constraints due to the economic crisis. So, from this point of view, it can be described as a success.

From a territorial point of view, the municipalities have, on the other hand, contributed the GECT to cover its current annual expenses. The proposed share was proportional to the size of the represented territory, where the Municipality of Gorizia contributed 50% Nova Gorica about 42% and the remaining 8% was given by the Municipality of Šempeter-Vrtojba. The GECT started operating in 2012 when the three founding municipalities only guaranteed an initial contribution of 20.000€. Later, in the 2015 financial year, it was decided to double the payments to ensure more liquidity given the good growth. In any case, everything was done following the key principle of proportionality between the neighbouring municipalities (about 50%-42%-8%). What surprises us, however, is the surge in guaranteed contributions by the municipalities in 2018, compared to the previous year. The surge is particularly marked in Gorizia, where the contribution from Gorizia has increased from 50% to 67%, thus greatly increasing its share; the total amount has also increased from the previous 20.000€ to the current 140.000€.

Looking carefully at the budget, among the costs, there is a very conspicuous increase in the items "personnel" and "charges for services" (recording +171% and +322% respectively). We believe that this is the result of a strong and decisive evolution of the GECT's project activities, which naturally require specialised (and therefore well paid) staff to be implemented. We hope that this is indeed the case because we cannot understand other explanations.

Martin Novak - Gorizia3.0