THE EUROPEAN COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS
The CoR is a consultative body which was established in 1994. It is the European Union's (EU's) assembly of local and regional representatives. It has currently 350 members who are representatives of regional or local bodies who either hold a regional or local authority electoral mandate or are politically accountable to an elected assembly. These members:
- live, work and are elected in the regions or cities they come from;
- are in touch with their citizens' concerns;
- are spokespersons for their local communities at the very heart of the EU decision-making and legislative process and keep them abreast of EU developments.
The CoR has to be consulted throughout the legislative process involving the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union in the following areas: transport, employment, social policy, European social fund, education, vocational training, youth and sports, culture, public health, trans-European networks, economic social and territorial cohesion, structural funds, environment and energy.
The CoR is also the guardian of the subsidiarity principle. Under the Lisbon Treaty it has the right to bring an action before the European Union's Court of Justice whenever it considers that the principle has not been respected.
The CoR also takes its role of forming a bridge between Europe and its citizens seriously, mounting local and regional information campaigns, local events and setting up platforms for networking between regions and also for businesses.
Lastly, it has developed an active partnership with the other European institutions.
DUTIES OF THE SECRETARY GENERAL
In the performance of his administrative duties based on the CoR mission statement and on the mandate given by the political leadership of the CoR, it will be incumbent upon the secretary-general, in particular, to:
- ensure an excellent management of the personnel so that the CoR administration is focused on: helping members achieve maximum policy impact, expanding the CoR's network of contacts and visibility at subnational level, and continuously developing the culture of service to the members, in particular as technology and working methods evolve;
- assist the president as regards preparing meetings of the Bureau and the Plenary Assembly, respecting procedures and ensuring that decisions taken in accordance with the CoR's Rules of Procedure are properly implemented;
- assist the president in preparing the representation of the CoR's interests vis-à-vis the other European institutions and bodies and internationally, and represent the CoR where these interests are at administrative level;
- ensuring the necessary cooperation and coordination amongst the CoR directorates, while liaising with the secretaries-general and secretariats of the CoR's Political Groups;
- submit proposals to the Bureau aimed at running the secretariat-general in such a way as to provide effective assistance to the CoR and its constituent bodies and to its members in the performance of their duties;
- take part in Bureau meetings with an advisory role;
- organise the preparation of the annual and multi-annual programme of the CoR's work;
- supervise the work of the CoR/European Economic and Social Committee joint services in keeping with the interinstitutional cooperation agreement concluded between the two Committees;
- exercise the powers which the Staff Regulations and the CoR's Rules of Procedure vest in him/her as Appointing Authority and Authority Empowered to Conclude Contracts of Employment;
- draw up the CoR's draft estimates of expenditure and revenue and implement the budget in accordance with the powers vested in him/her;
- ensure optimum use of the human and financial resources allocated to the CoR by the budgetary authorities as an authorising officer by delegation.