US Montenegrin Partnership for Municipal Development
ICMA established the US–Montenegro Partnership for Municipal Development in November 1999, initially under a one-year grant from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Phase I activities were designed to assist local governments in responding more effectively and efficiently to increased demands on municipal services due to the influx of internally displaced persons from the Kosovo conflict.
The ICMA grant, expanded and extended until December 2002, came to serve as the technical and operational hub for USAID assistance to the local government sector in Montenegro. During second phase, ICMA offered an integrated package of training and technical interventions designed to (1) develop and promulgate a new legal framework for fiscal and democratic decentralization and devolution of authority and resources, (2) improve municipal financial management skills and practices; (3) develop a local government in-service training delivery system to ensure sustainable implementation of enacted reforms; and (4) increase citizen involvement and collaboration in the local government reform process and community affairs.
Principal counterpartswere (1) the municipalities of Tivat, Kotor, Ulcinj, Cetinje, Niksic, Pljevlja, and Berane; (2) Ministries of Justice and Finance and other Republic agencies including the Departments of Revenue, Public Works, and Real Estate; (3) the Union of Municipalities of Montenegro; and (4) the Montenegro Association for Public Administration.
Municipal Infrastructure Program
ICMA Montenegro was chosen to implement the Montenegro Infrastructure Support Program (MISP)--a comprehensive program of infrastructure repair and improvement as well as parallel training in capital programming, procurement, citizen involvement, and other areas that promote overall program objectives and will ultimately enable self-reliance and sustainability of the communities involved.
ICMA selected seven municipalities in Montenegro, dubbed “The Municipal Centers of Excellence,” to produce capital improvement plans to submit for ICMA’s review. USAID and ICMA awarded money to the approved projects and provided engineering assistance, supervision, and training throughout their implementation. These projects served as an important incentive for participating local governments to apply the skills and tools acquired through the training and technical assistance being provided.
ICMA/MISP offered an integrated package of training and technical interventions designed to:
- Improve the municipal project planning and design process
Improve municipal financial management skills and practices
Familiarize municipalities with the new Public Procurement Law (PPL), and provide active municipal project management pursuant to the new law
- Improve municipal constituency outreach skills.
Principal counterparts include the municipalities of Tivat, Kotor, Ulcinj, Cetinje, Nikšić, Pljevlja and Berane.