Municipalities increase wage expenditure

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times July 5, 2019 12:45

Municipalities increase wage expenditure

TIRANA, June 27- Local government units have continued to increase salaries spending during the first quarter of this year even though the transfer of functions from the central government is fading, as investment spending has fallen further during the first months of this year. According to official data, the expenditures for personnel (wages and salaries) by the local government amounted to 5.3 billion lek (43 million euros) during January-March 2019, up by 4.7 percent compared to the same period of 2018. Salary expenditures accounted for 29 percent of the total budget that the local government had available this year.

After accelerating growth in the first quarter of 2018, investment expenditures amounted to 3.7 billion lek (30 million euros) at the end of the first quarter of 2019, down by about 1.3 percent in annual terms. Capital expenditures or investments constitute an important item of local budgets and a prerequisite for long-term economic development. According to government functions, capital expenditures for the functions “economic issues” (including transport infrastructure) and “community housing and commodities” (including housing and urban planning, water supply and sewerage, public lighting) comprise the main capital expenditure burden in all periods analyzed, at 48.4 percent and 24.9 percent, respectively. In the quarter under review, both of these functions point to the contraction of the investment level.

By contrast, investments in the function of education appear to have expanded by about 59.5 percent in annual terms, following the transfer of new competences with regard to preschool and pre-university education. At the municipal level, staffing costs are about 42.3 percent in the total of the local budget on average, followed by capital expenditures by about 29.4 percent, and operating costs by about 26.1 percent.

Despite the source of funding, expenditures of about 18.2 billion lek (148 million euros) were spent at the function of the local government during the regarded period. This value has increased by about 5.7 percent in annual terms, determined by the increase in current expenditures. In the breakdown by economic nature, current expenditures represented about 75.8 percent and capital expenditures represented about 24.2 percent of total expenditures carried out in the first quarter of 2019. Among the components of current expenditures, personnel expenses (wages and salaries) accounted for 5.3 billion lek (43 million euros), while other operating expenses recorded a level of 3.6 billion lek (29 million euros), with a modest increase of 1.8 percent compared to the same period last year. Expenditure on office supplies increased by 15.4 percent, third-party services by 9.6 percent, transport costs by 16.7 percent, travel expenses decreased by 6.7percent, other operating expenses increased by 25.5 percent, and those of ordinary maintenance fell by 2.3 percent.

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times July 5, 2019 12:45