“In Serbia, there currently a total of 1,200 charges, fees and other parafiscal levies at the national level and around 100 local administrative fees (so-called LAT), as well as a large number of other local non-fiscal levies, which are neither regulated nor transparent, and it is therefore important for both citizens and businesses to create a single public register of all non-fiscal levies,” said National Alliance for Local Economic Development (NALED) project manager Jelena Rancic.
Rancic said that these non-fiscal levies at the national level are prescribed in some 200 laws and 270 bylaws, while locally, they are prescribed in over 400 different decrees on the LAT. This is evidenced by the research and analysis carried out by KPMG and NALED under the auspices of the Non-Tax Revenue Reform Project, together with Partner Solutions and the Mihajlo Pupin Institute, funded by the US Agency for International Development.
“We propose the creation of a public and electronic register of all non-tax fees borne by citizens and businesses, thus enabling public administration to simply and systematically register the non-tax fees, considering that the non-registration of a fee automatically means that it cannot be collected. Bearing in mind that fees have the highest share in non-fiscal levies, they should be registered first,” the analysis states.
Local authorities charge a large number of non-fiscal fees that are often not transparent, are not sufficiently systematised and the amount of the charge for the same service varies from town to town. The amount of these fees must be adjusted to the costs of providing a public service and must be a fixed amount and not determined as a percentage of the variable base, Rancic warns.
According to her, the fee cannot be charged for the issuance of evidence or for any data that a state body obtains ex officio from another state body. The average amount of fees in the sample of 15 local government units surveyed is about 7,500 dinars, in cities about 3,850 dinars and in municipalities 8,350 dinars.
The highest amount is paid for procedures and acts related to the compliance with the conditions for conducting business, about 40,500 dinars (for using the name of a city or municipality in the name of a business entity), town planning and construction fee is about 17,000 dinars, while the lowest fee is for issuing a certificate from the register, which amounts to about 800 dinars.
The number of fees varies between local administrations from 10, as many as there are in the municipality of Ruma, to 144 in the municipality of Knjaževac. The largest number of fees is in the segment of urban planning and construction (36%), 28% refer to interpretations, opinions, explanations and legal remedies of state bodies, while 10% relate to the transport segment.
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