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「大阪都」法案 財政調整に国の関与は必要だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Jun. 16, 2012)
Central govt must have role in setting up Osaka metropolis
「大阪都」法案 財政調整に国の関与は必要だ(6月15日付・読売社説)

The ruling Democratic Party of Japan and its coalition partner the People's New Party apparently want to avoid turning the Osaka Ishin no Kai (Osaka restoration group), led by Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto, into an enemy as they eye the next House of Representatives election.
 次期衆院選をにらみ、橋下徹大阪市長が率いる地域政党・大阪維新の会を敵に回したくないとの思惑があるのだろう。

To create the Osaka metropolis that Hashimoto has pushed for, the parties have submitted a bill to the Diet that would enable the establishment of "special administrative wards" similar to Tokyo's 23 wards.
 橋下氏が提唱する「大阪都」構想の実現に向け、民主、国民新両党は、東京23区のような「特別区」の設置を可能にする特例法案を国会に共同提出した。

To the same end, opposition parties including the Liberal Democratic Party, New Komeito and Your Party have submitted two bills to revise the Local Government Law. The ruling and opposition parties have said they intend to integrate these three bills as quickly as possible.
 自民、公明、みんなの党なども同じ目的の地方自治法改正案を出している。各党は、与野党の計3案を早期に一本化する方向だ。

Making the necessary legal arrangements to allow local governments to choose autonomous systems appropriate to their conditions is consistent with the aim of decentralization. However, the parties appear to be speeding up the task as if they were trying to cater to Hashimoto. We view this as questionable. Passing this legislation is not an urgent matter, and we urge the parties to discuss the issue thoroughly so the seeds of future problems are not sown.
 地域事情に応じて自治制度を選択できる法整備は、地方分権の趣旨に合致する。だが、各党が橋下氏の意向に沿うように結論を急ぐのは疑問だ。緊急性がある法案でもない。将来に禍根を残さぬよう慎重に議論してもらいたい。

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State involvement at odds

The major difference between the bills of the ruling and opposition parties concerns the level of central government involvement. The bill formulated by the ruling camp would require the consent of the internal affairs and communications minister when legal arrangements are needed to distribute tax revenue or enact fiscal control in the envisioned special wards.
 与党案と二つの野党案で最大の違いは、国の関与の程度だ。与党案は、特別区の税源配分や財政調整に法整備を必要とする場合、総務相の同意を求めている。

The creation of an Osaka metropolis would require substantial legal revisions, such as to the Local Tax Law and the Local Allocation Tax Law. To make sure the shift to a new system is smooth and does not disrupt people's lives, the central government must be committed from the formulation stage.
 都構想の実現には、地方税法や地方交付税法など、多くの法改正が必要になる。住民生活に支障がないよう円滑に新制度へ移行するには、国が制度設計の段階から関与するのは当然のことだ。

The bills compiled by the opposition parties would see less central government involvement, only allowing the state to provide local governments with information and receive explanations from them.
 野党案は国の関与が薄い。情報提供や説明を受ける程度だ。

For example, the central government may not be able to say no when local governments ask for increased tax grants in conjunction with the establishment of the special wards. In such cases, the central government might have to cut tax grants to other regions, which would shake its role in the fundamental governance of the nation.
 たとえば、自治体が特別区への移行に併せて地方交付税の増額などを国に求めた場合、国はそれを拒めない可能性がある。他地域の交付税が減額され、国の統治のあり方も揺らぎかねない。

We believe the parties should come to a solution based on the ruling bloc's bill.
 与党の特例法案を軸に調整を図るべきだろう。

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Local govts face grave tasks

The bills differ widely on the issue of population. The ruling bloc says more than 2 million residents would be needed to create a special administrative ward, while Your Party has set the threshold at 700,000.
 特別区を設置するための人口要件でも、与党の「200万人以上」から、みんなの党の「70万人以上」まで開きがある。

Without a certain number of residents, local governments will find it difficult to independently provide welfare and other basic services, even with the cities divided into special wards. We are concerned that the initiative will prove ineffective and only increase costs, such as those for establishing ward assemblies, which is at odds with the purpose of the idea.
 一定の人口規模がなければ、市を分割して特別区を設けても、福祉など基本的な住民サービスを独自に担うのは難しい。かえって区議会設置などのコストが膨らみ、非効率にならないか。

The bills merely stipulate the procedures required to create the special wards, but what is really important is whether local governments will be able to create adequate systems on their own.
 ただ、法案は、特別区設置の手続きを定めているに過ぎない。肝心なのは、地方の側がしっかりとした制度を作れるかどうかだ。

Discussions over the specifics of the Osaka metropolis have only begun in Osaka Prefecture and the city of Osaka. How should Osaka be divided? How much authority should the special wards be allowed over governance and finances? There are many issues left to consider.
 都構想の具体像を巡る議論は、大阪府・市で始まったばかりだ。大阪市をどう分割するか、特別区にどこまで権限・財源を持たせるか、検討すべき課題は多い。

Some members of the Osaka prefectural and city assemblies have voiced opposition to the metropolis, with one saying, "Osaka would lose its vitality if the city was split," and another saying, "We could eliminate administrative overlap in the prefectural and city governments under the current system."
 府議会や市議会には、「大阪市の分割によって活力がそがれる」「現状でも二重行政の解消は可能だ」という反対意見もある。

Hashimoto should make his plans based on a variety of views. After all, he is also fully accountable to residents.
 橋下氏は、多様な意見を踏まえて立案すべきだ。住民にも丁寧に説明する責務があるだろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, June 15, 2012)
(2012年6月15日02時25分 読売新聞)
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by kiyoshimat | 2012-06-17 08:41 | 英字新聞

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