State Legislatures in Comparative Perspective

State Legislatures in Comparative Perspective

State and Local Government in Comparative Perspectives Xiaoye She University at Albany State University of New York [email protected] Overview Case Study: New York State Demographics compared Public finance compared Upstate-downstate divide State Legislatures: Comparing US states Legislative party composition Redistricting Legislative institutionalization

State and local government in other countries Unitary versus federal systems Comparative decentralization and federalism Why do we compare? Case Study: New York State Anyone from New York? Travelled to or lived in New York? What is the first thing in your mind about New York?

Can you name the state capital and some major cities of New York, other than the New York City? What do you know about the political system in New York State? Governor? Mayor of New York City? State legislatures? Home rule, Dillions rule? The two New Yorks? Demographics Compared Population, Race and Immigration New York State

Population Population Growth 19,745,289 South Carolina 4,961,119 1.9% 7.3% White 70.1% 68.4% Black/African American 17.6%

27.6% Hispanic or Latino 18.8% 5.5% Foreign Born 22.5% 4.8% Source: US Census Bureau, Quick Facts 2015-2016. Demographics Compared Income, Age, Education, Housing & Transportation New York State South Carolina

Median Household Income $59,269 $45,483 Persons in Poverty 15.4% 16.6% Persons 65 years and over 15.0% 16.2% Bachelors Degree or Higher

34.2% 25.8% $283,400 $139,900 32.3 23.9 Median value of owner-occupied homes Mean travel time to work (minutes) Source: US Census Bureau, Quick Facts 2015-2016. Public Finance Compared

Fiscal Revenues in NYS and SC ($1,000) New York State South Carolina Total Revenue 205, 789, 823 31,870,556 Revenue from Federal, % TR 48,154,490 23.4% 7,089,225 22.2%

Revenue from Taxes, % TR 76,978,982 37.4% 8,932,564 28.0% Individual Income Taxes, % TR 42,964,774 20.9% 3,422,532 10.7% General Sales and Receipts Taxes, % TR 12,668,587

6.2% 3,370,643 10.6% Corporate Income Taxes, % TR 4,861,687 2.4% 327,809 1.0% Source: US Census Bureau, 2014, Annual Survey of State Government Finances. Public Finance Compared Fiscal Expenditures in NYS and SC ($1,000)

New York State South Carolina Total Expenditure, %TR 178,324,895 86.7% 28,903,767 90.7% Education Expenditure, % TE 41,599,022 23.3% 8,701,760 30.1% Welfare Expenditure,

% TE 54,150,085 30.4% 6,658,472 23.0% Health Expenditure, % TE 9,108,534 5.1% 1,065,220 2.7% Highways Expenditure, % TE 4,745,887 2.7%

1,101,153 3.8% Total Debt, %TR 136,440,657 66% 15,089,289 47% Source: US Census Bureau, 2014, Annual Survey of State Government Finances. Historical Perspectives Both NYS and SC belong to the territory of original 13 states SC was admitted 8th in 1788 NYS was admitted 11th in the same year

No state was more split over the federalist issue than was NYS Delegates voted 30-27 in favor of ratification in 1788 All delegates from what we now call Upstate opposed the more powerful central government All those from south of Orange and Dutchess counties were in favor NYC threatened to secede and helped ratify the Constitution The Upstate-Downstate divide today retain some of the historical flavor Credit: Andy Author, http://andyarthur.org/. Upstate-Downstate Divide Longstanding economic, social and political differences

between Upstate and Downstate New York Downstate New York Far wealthier on average Home to higher proportions of rich as well as poor Fast pace of life, younger, and more liberal NYC one of the worlds greatest center of immigration (nearly half foreign-born) Upstate New York Economic stagnation or decline since 1950s More socially and fiscally conservative, older residents West of Albany: progressively more Midwestern and middle American

For most upstate cities, less than 5% residents are immigrants NYS Assembly Districts Overlaid County Maps Q: Can you guess which party controls the NYS Assembly? Credit: Andy Author, http://andyarthur.org/. Q: Can you guess which party controls the NYS Senate? Credit: Andy Author, http://andyarthur.org/. New York State Legislatures Bicameral system: The Senate (62 members) and the Assembly (150 members) Article III of the New York Constitution outlines the legislative power

NYS Senate Two-year term for Temporary President (Majority leader) and State Senators Strong leadership roles: appointment committees and name employees Historically controlled by Republicans but intensified political struggles in recent years Currently under Republican-IDC coalition majority NYS Assembly Two-year term for Assembly Speaker and Assemblyman Historically and currently controlled by Democrats New York State Legislatures Lawmaking powers reserved by the Constitution Appropriation of funds for operations of state government

and its agencies, and for aid to local governments Definition of crimes and setting of penalties Promotion of public welfare Correction, clarification, amendment or repeals of laws Greater power for the Senate to alone confirm the Governors appointment on non-elected officials and court judges A check upon the executive authority of the Governor Override of a Governors veto with supermajority (2/3) Legislative representation of diverse NYS communities Upstate interests get more representation in the Senate Downstate interests are dominant in the Assembly From Case Study to Comparison Discussion Time!

Any questions? What have you learned about New York State? What do you find most interesting? Anything else you want to know? Comparing State Legislatures Legislative partisan composition

Redistricting Split legislative control Divided government and Trifectas The case of New York Discussions Methods of redistricting Issues of gerrymandering and calling for reform The Case of New York Discussions Legislative Institutionalization Institutionalization and Professionalism The Case of New York Discussions

Legislative Party Composition Legislative Party Composition Source: National Conference of State Legislatures. Legislative Party Composition State and Legislative Partisan Composition (continued) Notice that New York is marked as Dem for legislative controlbut it is a de facto split, and should be considered as a case for Divided Government. Source: National Conference of State Legislatures.

Divided Government Source: Ballotpedia. Divided Government The number of states with divided government peaked in 1988 and 1996, then declined rapidly since 2004, but rose again in 2016 election Republicans have benefited more from this equation than Democrats in the last few election cycles But these may or may not be the continuing trends as history shows Legislative Party

Composition: New York Republicans had held State Senate for all but one year between 1939-2008 Redistricting helped them maintain majority in 2002, 2004 and 2006 elections despite demographic changes following 2010 census Democrats achieved their first majority in 2008 Did New York turned from divided government to trifectas? Not so fast

It was followed by internal struggles among Democrats, and coalition between a small group of democrats with Republicans Legislative Party Composition: New York By building a coalition with the Republicans, IDC makes themselves an Island of Power Credit: Facebook page of the Independent Democratic Conference. Legislative Party Composition: New York Corruption Scandals In 2015, NYS Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (R) was convicted with his son on Federal corruption charges

In the same year, NYS Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D) was convicted for corruption and influence-peddling NYS ranked No.1 in corruption (30+ cases in the past decade) When its members are united, the Legislature has nearly complete power over state governmentbut for various reasons, it seldom uses its full authority. Robert B. Ward New York State legislative procedures remain an arcane mystery to many of even the most sophisticated counsel. Richard A. Givens Legislative Party Composition Discussion time!

Why legislative party composition matter? What happened in New York? What does it tell about party discipline/cohesion? How about South Carolina? What do you think about split legislative control, divided government, and trifectas? Which way do you prefer? Why? Any questions? Redistricting: Methods

Traditionally state legislatures have been tasked with redistricting for both state and congressional elections To reduce politicization, however, 21 states now employ a commission (involved in varying degrees) New York is one of the three state legislatures (Maine and Vermont) with advisory commissions Connecticut, Illinois, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas have backup redistricting commissions in case redistricting through the legislative process fails

Iowa places redistricting responsibilities with a nonpartisan legislative staff Redistricting: Methods Redistricting: Implications Cherry-picking voters Eliminating incumbents Eliminating challengers Skewing statewide representation

Diluting minority votes Splitting communities Destroying political good will More information: All about redistricting. Redistricting & Gerrymandering Most states make the redistricting decisions themselves, and accusations of gerrymandering are frequent

Since 2010 census, lawsuits challenging congressional, or state legislature redistricting maps have been filed in 38 states There are growing demand for reform to depoliticize the process and bring fair representation California voters approved the creation of a 14member independent commission in 2008 Some other states are trying to follow, but there are pushbacks Redistricting: New York Currently relies on the state legislatures to draw the

lines with recommendations by an advisory commission Republicans used redistricting to help them retain Senate Majority after 2000s Democrats benefited from the redistricting following 2010 census, but IDC-GOP coalition prevented trifectas Things will change in 2020there will be a 10 member commission (appointed separately by Senate/Assembly majority/minority leaders, and 2 nonpartisan) The legislature must approve the commissions plan by simple up-down votes (can only amend it after two

rounds) Redistricting Discussion time! What do you know about redistricting in South Carolina, or other states? Is gerrymandering an issue in South Carolina? Any specific example(s)? Why does redistricting matter? Will creation of independent/non-partisan commission makes a difference in South Carolina or elsewhere? Why or why not?

Legislative Institutionalization How to measure professionalism? Salary, staff and time in session Institutionalization and professionalism Larger staff, higher budgets, and better odds of reelection Legislators more capable and willingly to exert impact Strengthens legislative power in relation to the Governor and the Executive Branch

Though there is not much evidence for direct effect on public policy Legislative Institutionalization Source: National Conference of State Legislatures. Legislative Institutionalization Source: National Conference of State Legislatures. Legislative Institutionalization: New York Gradual and steady increase in percentage of legislators seeking reelection from 40% to 90% since 1800s

Steady increase in the success rate of incumbents The Senate and Assembly became more professionalized, with more and better-trained staff Members service grew longer and their compensation increased Boosted legislative power relative to that of governor However, the same reason makes it more difficult to get legislators to form a policy consensus

Concerns fore reelection makes them less inclined to comply with leaders just to reach an agreement Legislative Institutionalization Discussion Time! To what extent do you think legislative institutionalization is important? Do you think South Carolinas legislature should be more institutionalized like New York? Why or why not? Before we move on

Any questions? Additional thoughts? State and local government in other countries Unitary versus Federal Systems Comparative Decentralization Fiscal decentralization Policy decentralization Political decentralization Comparative Federalism Westminster Model

Republican-Presidential Model Hybrid Model Decentralization and Federalism Unitary vs. Federal Systems All national governments (excepting micro-states) must deal with the problem of how to allocate duties and responsibilities across regions, and between central and local agencies The distribution of powers between levels of government is an important aspect of the constitutional organization of a state

Unitary and Federal systems can be considered as ideal types on a continuum of power distribution between central, state/provincial, and local government Unitary vs. Federal Systems Unitary systems Local governments may enjoy considerable autonomy, but their powers are not accorded constitutional status The central government determines which decisions to devolve to the local level Federal Systems The states or provinces of a federal state have

constitutionally protected sovereignty The state or provincial governments share sovereignty with the central government, and have final jurisdiction over a broad range of policy areas Unitary vs. Federal Systems Questions for you: Which of following countries are unitary? Which are federal? Argentina, Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Malaysia, Switzerland Comparative Decentralization Decentralization: a shift of authority towards local

governments and away from central governments Fiscal decentralization Balance of expenditures and revenues between government Most pronounced in Spain and Latin America Policy decentralizationdifficult to measure Does the central government has the legal right to override the decisions and policies of lower level government? Which level of government is responsible for decision-making in specific policy areas? Political decentralization Whether regional and local governments are popularly elected Many countries shift to subnational elections (30% to 90%) Comparative Decentralization

Decentralization is both a political fact and an increasingly popular idea (Gerring et al 2007) Shift from socialism, export-oriented growth (East Asia), and import substitution (Latin America) To local-level initiatives, micro-enterprise, NGOs, and democracy on the ground Renewed interests in democracy, accountability, citizen participation, civil society, social capital, and deliberation The appeal of decentralization cuts across the usual left-right cleavage

Comparative Federalism Self-rule plus shared rule via constitutional distribution of power between levels of government Three broad types: The Westminster Model: Canada, Australia, India, Belgium* The Republican-Presidential Model: USA The Hybrid Model: Germany, Austria, Switzerland Competing perspectives: institutional, political economy, and cultural Comparative Federalism The Westminster Model: India

The combination of the parliamentary system with federalism The president plays largely ceremonial roles, while the Prime Minister is the presiding actual head of government Fusion of powers between the Executive and the Parliament The Prime Minister and his council of ministers come from parliamentary elections Power is divided between central (military/external

affairs) and state governments (internal affairs) Comparative Federalism The Westminster Model: India The Presidents Rule: a State government can be dissolved by central government if not functioning A combination of unicameral (Vidhan Sabha) and bicameral state legislatures (+Vidhan Parishad) The Governor of a State is appointed by the President for 5 years, who in turn appoint Council of Ministers at state level

Some states (Jammu and Kashmir) are given more constitutional powers than others Comparative Federalism The Westminster Model: India Union List State List Concurrent List Military Public order Criminal law and procedure Foreign Affairs Public Health

Marriage and divorce Citizenship Transportation Education National economic affairs Agriculture Civil procedure National Infrastructure electricity Economic and Social Planning

Constitution and Supreme Court Village administration Social security/insuran ce Comparative Federalism The Hybrid Model: Germany Strong tradition of regional government (Lnder) The Basic Law divides authority between the federal government and the Lnder

The federal government can exercise authority only in those areas specified in the Basic Law The federal government is assigned a greater legislative role and the Lnder governments a greater administrative role More civil servants are employed by Lnder governments than by federal and local governments Comparative Federalism The Hybrid Model: Germany Most Lnder have unicameral legislatures, whose members are elected directly by popular vote

The Lnder governments also exercise power at the national level through the Bundesrat, which is made up of representatives appointed by the Land governments In this way, the Lnder affect the federal legislative process Half of the members of the Federal Convention, which elects a federal president, are Lnder officials The Lnder governments also take part in the selection of judges for the federal courts Comparative Federalism

German Federal Government Exclusive Powers Concurrent Powers Framework Powers Defense Civil Law Mass media Foreign Affairs Immigration

Nature conservation Immigration Public Welfare Regional planning Transportation Land Management Public service regulations Communications Consumer Protection Currency Standards

Public Health Comparative Federalism Discussion Time: What are the differences between the three models? How does US differ from India, and Germany? Do these differences matter? How? Decentralization and Federalism Decentralization is, quite possibly, the dominant political trend of our time. Gerring et al (2007)

Federal polities such as US and Germany remain relatively stable Unitary systems are moving towards greater decentralization Only 24 out of 193 countries are federal However, most large democracies are now constitutionally federal Over 56% of democratic citizens live in federal polities Decentralization and

Federalism Matrix of vertical power-sharing arrangements Source: Pippa Norris, Driving Democracy (2008). Decentralization and Federalism Democracy and Federalism Source: Pippa Norris, Driving Democracy Decentralization and Federalism Matrix of vertical power-sharing arrangements Source: Pippa Norris, Driving Democracy

Why do we compare? In general, what have you learned from our discussions today? What have you learned from comparing states/local governments in the US? What have you learned from decentralization/federalism in other countries? Appendix NYS Legislative Branch Bicameral: the Senate (62 members) and the

Assembly (150 members) Lieutenant Governor as the ceremonial Senates president NYS Senate Two-year term for Temporary President (Majority leader) Strong leadership roles: appointment committees and name employees NYS Assembly Two-year term for Assembly Speaker NYS Legislative Branch Lawmaking powers reserved by the Constitution

Appropriation of funds for operations of state government and its agencies, and for aid to local governments Definition of crimes and setting of penalties Promotion of public welfare Correction, clarification, amendment or repeals of laws Override of a Governors veto with support of 2/3 Greater power for the Senate to alone confirm the Governors appointment on non-elected officials and court judges A check upon the executive authority of the Governor Legislative representation of diverse NYS communities NYS Legislative Branch

Split legislative control Democratic majority in the Assembly Coalition majority between the Republican and the Independent Democratic Conference (IDC) The democrats would have a narrow majority, but the IDC made a deal with the Republicans giving them the majority NYS Executive Branch The Governor Four-year term, states chief executive and Commander-inChief 30 years+, US citizen, NYS residency 5 years + Required by the constitution to submit a yearly State Budget to the legislature Recommendations for legislation and proposals for funding appropriations Can veto legislative bills, convene the legislature for special sessions Appoint and remove non-elected state officers Grant reprieves, commutations and pardons

The Lieutenant Governor Same term and same qualifications Assumes the governorship in case of impeachment, resignation, absence or death of the governor NYS Executive Branch The State Comptroller Elected chief fiscal officer of the state Administrative head of the Department of Audit Control Tremendous power and often viewed as a path to the Governorship The Attorney General The states chief legal officer Responsible for the prosecution of all actions for or against the State

Control of the legal affairs of state officers and departments The head of the Department of Law The heads of remaining departments are generally appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate (Exception: Commissioner of Education) NYS Executive Branch Agriculture and Markets Health Audit and Control

Labor Civil Service Law Correctional Services Mental Hygiene Economic Development

Motor Vehicles Education Public Service Environmental Conservation State

Taxation and Finance Transportation Executive Family Assistance Financial Services NYS Judicial Branch Unified court system defined by the State Constitution

Consists of full-time judges, part-time judges, and nonjudicial employees Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals as the chief judicial officer Serves as the chairman of the Administrative Board of the Courts Establishes statewide administrative standards and policies for the court system Three main classifications of courts The Appellate courts: hear appeals of decisions Trial Courts of Superior Jurisdiction: original jurisdiction Trial Courts of Lesser Jurisdiction: original jurisdiction NYS Judicial Branch The Court of Appeals The States highest court

Comprises the Chief Judge and 6 associate judges Appointed by the Governor for 14-year terms Recommendations by the Commission on Judicial Nomination with advice and consent of the Senate Hears cases on appeal from the other courts Review is generally limited to questions of law 4 Appellate Divisions and 11 judicial districts that divide the state The Court of Claims Judges with 9-year terms Main jurisdiction over claims for money damages involving the State and a claimant, or two conflicting claimants NYS Judicial Branch

Four courts of lesser jurisdiction outside of NYC District, City, Town and Village Courts Handle minor civil and criminal matters In general, a complex court system Reflection of the varied objectives that the Judiciary strives to realize Serves as the enforcement body for the bills passed by the legislature and signed into law by the Governor Determine practical application and decide the constitutionality of laws that are in effect More information on NYS Branches of Government NYS Judicial Branch NYS Judicial Branch

Local Governments in NYS Geographically divided into 62 counties (including 5 boroughs of NYC) 62 cities (including NYC) 932 towns 555 villages 697 school districts (including NYC) special districts Dillions Rule and Home Rule in NYS Local governments are granted power that are not inconsistent with the provisions of the State Constitution or other general law

The legislature may not pass any law that affects only one locality unless the governing body of that locality has first approved the bill, or unless a State interest exists Upstate-Downstate Divide President-elect Donald Trump won Upstate New York Credit: Julie McMahon. Upstate-Downstate Divide Partition and Secession efforts in New York Only one was successfulVermont in 1777 Prominent but unsuccessful ones Proposed independent city of New York (including Long Island)

Proposed state of Long Island (everything on the island except NYC) Proposed secession of Staten Island and Brooklyn from NYC Proposed new Peconic County on Long Island Proposed state of Niagara (western counties) Proposed state of Upstate New York (northern counties) Proposed two autonomous regions: the New Amsterdam Region (upstate) and the New York Region (downstate) Upstate-Downstate Divide Partition and Secession efforts in New York: Ongoing Upstate-Downstate Divide Such partition plans are always difficult to achieve because The only way to do this is to amend the NYS constitution The constitution convention only occurs every 20 years, upon approval of state-wide voters

Next ballot will be in November 2017 If the convention is approved, voters will elect 3 delegates in each of the 63 senate districts, and 15 statewide delegates. The 204 delegates will convene and put up a proposal to reform the constitution There is no guarantee tis plan will be included in the proposed reform, not to mention getting majority votes from both the delegates and voters. Upstate-Downstate Divide Partition and Secession efforts in New York Peter Vallone from NYC: "If not secession, somebody please tell me what other options we have if the state is going to continue to take billions from us and give us back pennies? Should we raise taxes some more? Should we cut services some more? Or should we consider seriously going out on our own?" SCOPE, a gun group from Upstate: "Downstate has dominated Upstate for decades and Upstate has no future in a state controlled by New York City's needs and

desires." The Public Policy Institute of New York: "Secession would be impossible, and the last thing New York needs is some kind of destructive Upstate-Downstate showdown. But given the prolonged lag in Upstates economy, it is time to think seriously about whether there is a way of restructuring the relationship to give Upstate the opportunity indeed, the freedomto reduce some of the disadvantages that are smothering its economy." Take public transportation for example, downstate receives steady increase in state operating assistance (STOA). By contrast, state funding for upstate public transportation systems remain stagnant, despite rising operating costs and declining operating revenues.

Governor Cuomo managed to pass the budget plan through balancing downstate-upstate interests across different policy areas. Upstate Downstate Divide Is it real? The term is very popular in both popular culture and political/policy debates But there is no official definition, especially those live in-between, these borders are imaginary Central New Yorkers dont want to be called

upstate, but they know for sure they dont live in downstate Long Islanders and NYCers believe everything else is upstate According to NYSDOT/DMV, Rockland and Westchester belongs to the New York Metropolitan Area (NYMA) Source: National Conference of State Legislatures Legislative Party Composition Legislative Republica Control n Democrat

Split 2016 32 14 3 2014 27 19 3 2012 27

15 7 2010 27 14 8 State Control Republica n Democrat Divided 2016

24 7 18 2014 23 15 11 2012 22 11 16

2010 16 9 24 Data Source: National Conference of State Legislatures. Legislative Party Composition: New York Republicans had held State Senate for all but one year between 1939-2008 Republicans efforts to redistrict the State Senate after 2000 census Arbitrary addition of a downstate seat to leave upstate

and Long Island intact and maintain Republican control Lasted for three elections: 2002, 2004, and 2006 2008 election marked the first time of a Democratic majority Control in the State Senate shifted from upstate Republicans to downstate NYC-centric Democrats (32 out of 62) Many of the districts that have gone from the Republican to the Democrats were in in NYC or Long Island NYS Senate Demographic Shift in 2008 Credit: Andy Beveridge, Gotham Gazette. Legislative Party Composition: New York Did New York turned from divided government to

trifectas? Not so fast Power struggles after 2008 elections Four democrats immediately refuse to caucus with their party or back Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) as the majority leader Compromises were made and Smith became the leader, but that did not last long A Parliamentary coup by two Democrats replaced Smith with Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) Senate Democrats voted for John Sampson (D-Brooklyn) and removed the two Democrats from their ranks Legislative Party Composition: New York Power struggles 2011-2016 Republican regained control in 2010 with 32-30 majority, but that didnt last long either The redistricting of the Senate following the 2010

Census gave Democrats a three-seat majority in 2012 Then another surprise The rise of the Independent Democratic Conference (IDC) IDC leader: Jeffery Klein (D-Bronx) A group of breakaway Senate Democrats Klein, IDC and GOP announced a power-sharing agreement to cover the Senate in a bipartisan coalition Members of IDC gained top Senate committee leadership Comparative Decentralization Decentralization is both a political fact and an increasingly popular idea (Gerring et al 2007)

Shift from socialism, export-oriented growth (East Asia), and import substitution (Latin America) To local-level initiatives, micro-enterprise, NGOs, and democracy on the ground Renewed interests in democracy, accountability, citizen participation, civil society, social capital, and deliberation The appeal of decentralization cuts across the usual left-right cleavage Comparative Decentralization

Latin America: Decentralization as an essential part of democratization as discredited autocratic central regimes are replaced by elected governments Decentralization as part of the structural reform promoted by international organizations and donor/creditor countries (Washington Consensus and Neoliberalism) Africa: Spread of multi-party systems generate demand for more local voice in decision making (Ethiopia) As an outcome of long civil wars (Mozambique and Uganda) East Asia: Motivated by the need to improve service delivery to large populations Recognition of the limitations of central administration and absence of alternative governance structure

Comparative Decentralization In most cases, centralization and decentralization are not either-or conditions Having an appropriate balance is essential for effective and efficient functioning of government When national governments decentralize responsibilities, they often retain important policy and supervisory roles From central planning to enabling Allow local units of administration or non-government organizations to take on more responsibilities Central ministries have crucial roles in promoting and sustaining decentralization The key is to help strengthen local institutional capacity Technical assistance is often required for local governments, private enterprises and NGOs

Comparative Decentralization Arguments for Decentralization Can alleviate the bottlenecks in decision making caused by too much central planning/control Can help cut complex bureaucratic procedures and increase government officials sensitivity to local conditions and needs Can help national government ministries reach larger numbers of local areas with services Can allow greater political representation of diverse groups in decision-making Can relieve top managers in central ministries of routine tasks to concentrate on policy Can lead to more creative, innovative and responsive programs by allowing local experimentation Can increase political stability and national unity by allowing greater citizen participation at local level Comparative Decentralization

Arguments against decentralization May not always be efficient, especially for standardized, routine, network-based services Can result in the loss of economies of scale and control over scarce financial resources by the central government Weak administrative or technical capacity at local levels may result in less efficient or effective service delivery in some areas of the country Administrative responsibilities may be transferred to local levels without adequate financial resources, making equitable distribution/provision more difficult Sometimes can make coordination of national policies more complex and may allow functions to be captured by local elites Distrust between public and private sectors may undermine cooperation at local level Comparative Federalism The institutional perspectives:

In some cases, distribution of powers can be altered to suit the tastes of the federal government The Case of Malaysia Article 75 of the Federal Constitution establishes federal supremacy in the event of state law being inconsistent with federal law Article 150 grant Yang Di-Pertuan Agong the power to declare state of emergency, granting both the parliament/federal government virtually unlimited powers Comparative Federalism The institutional perspectives: In other cases, the legislative process enables the constituent state government to administer federal legislation and give them policy influence

Germany: The interlocking relationship between the federal and lander governments Canada: Similar ways of federal-provincial relations define executive federalism Comparative Federalism The institutional perspectives: The structure of parties often parallels the structure of federations (Riker and Elazar) US: a republican presidential system favoring a two-party

system in both state and national levels The combination of separation of powers, weak party discipline, flimsy national parties and strong local state autonomyhigh decentralization Canada: a Westminster parliamentary system that favors regional parties at both federal and provincial levels Stronger party cohesiveness/discipline, but the federal parties were more divided along provincial lines Comparative Federalism The Political Economy perspective: Restructuring of national economy or regional economies lead to changing structure of federalism Canada:

Regional structure of national economy combines with the federal structure intermittent trends of centralization/decentralization Some provinces want Ottawa to take charge of economic policy, others want to strengthen provincial economic powers The shift of economic power from Montreal and Winnipeg to Toronto, Vancouver, and Calgary explains the growing pressure for decentralization Comparative Federalism The Cultural perspective: For example, religion can be a highly divisive source of both violent and non-violent conflict in federal systems Multi-religious federations often have cross-cutting religious cleavage

India: 82% Hindu, 12% Muslim, 2.5% of Christian, 2% Sikh, 1% Buddhist Religious differences interact with regionalism, territoriality, language, the caste system and a plurality of beliefs Comparative Federalism The Cultural perspective: Malaysia: A multi-religious federation including Hindus, Christians, Buddhists, Taoists, and native animists (despite its official promotion of Islam) Territorial distribution of the Chinese and Indians, and conflicts within the Bumiputera, and tensions among Malay Muslims The Islamic state served to produce a kind of modus operandi for peaceful coexistence and cooperation

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