The Congress adopts its priorities for 2017-2020 [21/10/2016]
The Congress members, meeting at their 31st Session on 21 October 2016, in Strasbourg, adopted the new priorities for 2017-2020. Presented by the corapporteurs Gudrun Mosler-Törnström (Austria, SOC) and Anders Knape (Sweden, EPP/CCE), the priorities focus on two main areas: strengthening the quality of local and regional democracy and building secure societies that are respectful, inclusive and closer to citizens.  
31st Session: Elections to the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities [20/10/2016]
The 31st Session of the Congress was marked by the renewal of the delegations and the election of new Presidents of the Congress, its Chambers and Committees. On 19 October 2016, Gudrun Mosler-Törnström (Austria, SOC) was the first woman elected as President of the Congress. The Chairs and Vice-Chairs of the two Chambers of the Congress were elected on 20 October 2016. Anders Knape (Sweden, EPP-CCE) was re-elected as the Chair of the Chamber of Local Authorities, and Gunn Marit Helgesen (Norway, EPP-CCE), was elected as Chair of the Chamber of Regions. Finally, the Chairs and Vice-Chairs of the Congress Statutory Committees were also elected on 19 October. Leen Verbeek (Netherlands, SOC) was elected as Chair of the Monitoring Committee, Jean-Louis Testud (France, EPP-CCE), was elected as Chair of the Governance Committee, and Gabriele Neff (Germany, ILDG), was elected as Chair of the Current Affairs Committee.  
Gudrun Mosler-Törnström, the first woman to be elected President of the Congress [19/10/2016]
The members of the Congress, meeting for the 31st Session in Strasbourg (France), elected Gudrun Mosler-Törnström (Austria, SOC) as President for a two-year term of office. Ms Mosler-Törnström is the first woman being elected to the Presidency of the Congress. “The strengthening of democracy, human rights and the rule of law at local and regional level are the core objectives of the Congress. Without these values, our societies would face a decrease in solidarity and an increase in radicalisation, extremism, xenophobia and recentralisation,” she stated addressing the Congress members. Underlining that the democratic structure of the European continent is at risk, she stressed that decentralisation is one answer to these challenges. “Decentralisation is an evolving process which needs our full involvement. The work of the Council of Europe Congress is, therefore, clearly more important than ever,” she said.  
[20/10/2016]  Hanno Pevkur : “Only constitutionally-guaranteed decentralisation will anchor democracy at the regional and local levels”
[21/10/2016]  Jean-Claude Frécon : “The European Charter of Local Self-government, a unique legal instrument for good local and regional governance”
[19/10/2016]  Preventing radicalisation in towns, cities and regions: the Congress consolidates its strategy
[20/10/2016]  Thorbjřrn Jagland: 'Congress' thematics are in line with the Council of Europe's priorities'
[25/10/2016]  Chamber of Regions: debate on implementation of the European Social Charter at regional level
[20/10/2016]  Young people to the Congress: “Let us create partnerships”
[24/10/2016]  Inger Linge: “Women’s political participation is vital for our representative democracies”
[25/10/2016]  The Congress adopts a roadmap against corruption at local and regional levels
[24/10/2016]  Jos Wienen: 'Implementing the rule of Law is an on-going task which requires the commitment of all levels of governance'
[21/10/2016]  Jean-Louis Testud: “Metropolitan governance structures should be democratically accountable and not involve any erosion of local democracy”
[27/10/2016]  Davit Lokyan: “Strengthening local democracy plays an important part in co-operation between the Council of Europe and Armenia”
[21/10/2016]  Congress adopts Information Report on local and provincial elections in Serbia
[21/10/2016]  Jean-Louis Testud: 'Gender budgeting is a key mechanism for equality between women and men'
[21/10/2016]  Local and regional democracy in Croatia
[20/10/2016]  Combating anti Gypsyism: Congress calls for better access to social rights and legislative measures
[20/10/2016]  Local democracy in Cyprus
[20/10/2016]  Congress presents an Information Report on local by-elections in Armenia

All news of the 31st Session

Youth delegates

Youth delegates of between 16 and 30 years of age will also sit alongside the members of the Congress and take an active part in the debates. They will present the different grassroots projects they have developed and implemented in the field in the framework of the Congress initiative “Rejuvenating politics”.

List of projects
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All documents

Download the Session documents on CoECloud or Zip folder (the Session folder is regularly updated)
Welcome pack

Several publications presenting the Congress rules of procedures and the tools available for members are available online. They are included in the welcome pack distributed to members at the opening of the session.
Welcome pack (publications)
Practical information

An information sheet presents practical information for Congress members: how to download documents, elections, photo studio, Mediabox interviews, Twitter...
Download the information sheet

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