52005PC0116

Proposal for a Decision of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing for the period 2007-2013 the programme "Citizens for Europe" to promote active European citizenship {SEC(2005) 442} /* COM/2005/0116 final - COD 2005/0041 */


Brussels, 6.4.2005

COM(2005) 116 final

2005/0041 (COD)

Proposal for a

DECISION OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL

establishing for the period 2007-2013 the programme "Citizens for Europe" to promote active European citizenship

(presented by the Commission) {SEC(2005) 442}

EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

INTRODUCTION

The European Union today forms a dense network of institutional, social and political relationships which has become even richer in the context of an enlarged Europe and will continue to do so in the context of future enlargements. European citizens are at the heart of this process and their active involvement is essential in order to ensure a democratic and balanced development of the European Union.

The European Union is, however, currently facing a paradox: despite the successes and achievements of the European Union since its creation, European citizens seem to have developed a certain distance towards the European institutions and to have difficulties in identifying themselves within the process of European integration. The low level of participation in the last elections for the European Parliament is a recent illustration. The European Council has recognised on several occasions the need to bring the European Union and its institutions closer to the citizens of the Member States and it has encouraged the Union's institutions to promote citizens' participation in public life and in decision-making.

The Commission has identified three different types of responses to this problem, which are to be implemented by different initiatives of the Commission. First, there is a need for better information of citizens about European institutions and better communication on European issues in general. Second, citizens need to be fully aware, and make full use, of their rights as citizens of the European Union, as described in Article 17 of the EC Treaty, and of their fundamental rights under the Charter on Fundamental rights. Third, citizens should also be aware of their duties as citizen and become actively involved in the process of European integration, developing a sense of belonging and a European identity.

The aim of this programme is to tackle the third issue. The challenge of bridging the gap between citizens and the European institutions is closely linked to another challenge, that of strengthening cohesion among Europeans, particularly after the accession of 10 new Member States on 1 May 2004. In such a context, the shared values, such as freedom, fairness, tolerance and solidarity, which hold our societies together, become more important than ever.

The European Union therefore requires a programme which puts citizens at the centre, which offers them the opportunity to fully assume their responsibilities as European citizens and which responds to the need to improve their participation in the construction of Europe. This programme would encourage cooperation between citizens and their organisations from different countries in order to meet, to act together and to develop their own ideas in a European environment that goes beyond a national vision and which respects their diversity. Mutual understanding, solidarity and a sense of belonging to Europe are the building blocks for the involvement of citizens.

1. CONTEXT OF THE PROPOSAL

The Council Decision establishing a Community programme to promote active European citizenship (civic participation) was adopted on 26 January 2004 provided a legal basis for grants towards the promotion of active European citizenship, for a period of three years (2004–2006)[1].

The Commission Communication "Building our common Future: Policy challenges and Budgetary means of the Enlarged Union 2007-2013"[2] proposed developing European citizenship as a main priority for EU action. This included the need to make citizenship a reality by fostering European culture and diversity, covering areas directly involving European citizens with the integration process, including that of citizenship. In the light of the above and of the results of the public consultation, as well as of the ex-ante evaluation of the future instrument, the Commission is presenting this legislative proposal as part of the new generation programmes for the period 2007-2013. The proposed programme both ensures the continuity of the current Civic participation programme and opens the way to new activities, providing a degree of flexibility in order to be able to adapt to future developments.

2. OUTCOME OF THE PUBLIC CONSULTATION WITH INTERESTED PARTIES AND OF THE IMPACT ASSESSMENT

2.1. Public consultations

As part of the development of this proposal for a new programme, extensive consultation has been carried out concerning the problems and issues to be addressed, the target users, key objectives and potential options for implementation. An online consultation, from December 2004 to February 2005, resulted in more than a thousand responses, including around 700 from organisations and around 300 from individuals. A Consultative Forum was organised on 3 and 4 February 2005, gathering approximately 350 participants, covering the full range of stakeholders.

The main outcome of this consultation was an overwhelming support for a new programme. The overall approach proposed, of targeting both citizens directly and civil society organisations, was massively supported.

The success of the current activities, such as town twinning and operating grants for organisations, was evidenced by the strong support for pursuing them. The main innovations sought were multi-annual projects, pooling of experience between local projects of different Member States, development of innovative partnerships with new partners and major events mobilising citizens at EU level, notably in the context of intercultural dialogue.

Different general principles, which should guide the implementation of the programme, have been stressed. The transnational dimension was considered essential. The need to pay particular attention to building bridges between the citizens of “old”, “new” and future Member States was underlined. Development of synergies between the various activities carried out and networking between different kinds of stakeholders were considered important. There was also a call for bridges between this programme and other Commission programmes.

2.2. Ex-ante evaluation

The ex-ante evaluation report presents the results of the consultation to back up the proposal. It underlines the necessity to respond to the needs of citizens and civil society organisations for a scheme to support transnational activities in the field of active citizenship. It stresses the complementarity with other programmes and activities of the European Union, especially those implemented by the Directorate General for Press and Communication, the Directorate General for Research and the Directorate General for Justice, Freedom and Security.

3. OBJECTIVES OF THE NEW PROGRAMME

The global aim of the proposed programme is to contribute to:

- giving citizens the opportunity to interact and participate in constructing an ever closer Europe, united in and enriched through its cultural diversity;

- forging a European identity, based on recognised common values, history and culture;

- enhancing mutual understanding between European citizens respecting and celebrating cultural diversity, while contributing to intercultural dialogue.

Taking into account the current situation and the identified needs, the most appropriate specific objectives, which are to be implemented on a transnational basis, are to:

- bring together people from local communities across Europe to share and exchange experiences, opinions and values, to learn from history and to build for the future

The programme will foster the direct participation of citizens across Europe, both in the activities of the programme and in the development of the notion of a European identity. One of the most effective ways of participation is directly experiencing other cultures in an environment that fosters exchange and where people learn through involvement in issues and actions related to the essence of Europe. This intercultural exchange will contribute to the improvement of the mutual knowledge of the culture and history of the European peoples, and will therefore bring our common cultural heritage to the fore and strengthen the basis for our common future.

- foster action, debate and reflection related to European citizenship through cooperation between civil society organisations at European level

There is a need to support transnational cooperation among civil society organisations at European level. Those Europe-wide organisations, representing a vast spectrum of citizens, can act as multipliers and offer a voice in Europe for citizens, through transnational and cross-sectoral actions, debate and reflection, linked to citizenship of the European Union.

- make the idea of Europe more tangible for its citizens by promoting and celebrating Europe's values and achievements, while preserving the memory of its past

There is a need for activities addressing the widest possible audience across frontiers, built around shared ideas, values or achievements, and reaching the greatest possible number of Europeans. These activities across Europe have the objective of forging a sense of belonging to common European ideals, adding to the existing sense of national and regional identity. They will contribute to bringing the common cultural heritage to the fore.

- encourage the balanced integration of citizens and civil society organisations from all Member States, contributing to intercultural dialogue and bringing to the fore both Europe’s diversity and unity, with particular attention to the activities with Member States that have recently joined the European Union

Without the strong and full participation of the citizens and civil society organisations of the newer Member States, the development of Europe will be severely compromised. All the above objectives will therefore take this last objective into account, which will be implemented in all the programme’s activities. Transnational cooperation will play an essential role with regard to this objective.

4. ACTIONS

4.1 Action 1: Active citizens for Europe

Town twinning

This measure is aimed at activities that involve or promote direct exchanges between European citizens through their participation in town-twinning activities, including conferences or seminars on subjects of common interest, along with related publications, organised in the context of town-twinning activities. This measure will actively contribute to strengthening mutual knowledge and understanding between the citizens.

Citizens’ projects and support measures

Under this measure, a variety of projects of transnational and cross-sectoral dimension, directly involving citizens, will be supported. The scale and scope of such projects will depend on the developments within society and will explore, through innovative approaches, possible responses to the identified needs. Those projects will gather citizens from different horizons, who will act together or debate on common European issues, hereby developing mutual understanding as well as raising awareness of the process of European integration. In order to improve citizen’s projects, it is also necessary to develop support measures to exchange best practices, to pool experiences between stakeholders at local and regional levels, including public authorities, and to develop new skills, for example through training.

4.2. Action 2: Active civil society in Europe

Structural support for European public policy research organisations (think-tanks)

Bodies providing new ideas and reflections on European issues are important institutional interlocutors able to provide independent strategic, cross-sectoral recommendations to the EU institutions... They can undertake activities that feed the debate notably on citizenship of the European Union and on European values and cultures. This measure is aimed at strengthening the institutional capacity of those organisations, which are representative, provide real European added value, can bring about important multiplier effects and, finally, are able to cooperate with other beneficiaries of this programme. The strengthening of transeuropean networks is an important element in this area.

Structural support for organisations of civil society at European level

Civil society organisations need to exist and to be able to operate and cooperate at European level in a large number of fields of general interest (e.g. common values and heritage, voluntarism, social issues). This measure will provide them with the capacity and stability to act as transnational catalysts for their members and for civil society at European level. The strengthening of transeuropean networks is an important element of this area.

Support for projects initiated by civil society organisations

Civil society organisations, such as non-governmental organisations, trade unions, federations, think-tanks, etc., can, through debate, publications, advocacy and other concrete transnational projects, involve citizens or represent their interests. Introducing or building on a European dimension in the activities of civil society organisations will enable them to enhance their capacities and reach wider audiences. Direct cooperation among civil society organisations from different Member States will contribute to mutual understanding for the different cultures and point of views and to the identification of shared concerns and values.

4.3. Action 3: Together for Europe

High-visibility events

This measure will support events organised by or in cooperation with the European Commission which are substantial in scale and scope, strike a significant chord with the peoples of Europe, help to increase their sense of belonging to the same community, make them aware of the history, achievements and values of the European Union, involve them in intercultural dialogue and contribute to the development of their European identity.

Studies

In order to get a better understanding of active citizenship at European level, the Commission will carry out studies, surveys and opinion polls.

Information and dissemination tools

The focus on citizens and the variety of initiatives in the field of active citizenship call for comprehensive information on the various activities of the programme, on other European actions related to citizenship and on other relevant initiatives to be provided through an Internet portal and other tools.

5. LEGAL ASPECTS OF THE PROPOSAL

5.1. Legal basis

The essential importance of promoting mutual understanding and intercultural dialogue and the necessary focus on our values, culture and history, as the building blocks of our European identity, is reflected by each of the programme’s objectives.

Those objectives are linked to Article 151 of the EC Treaty on “Culture”, but the reference to Article 308 of the EC Treaty is also necessary in order to cover the actions under the programme that do not have a specific legal basis in this Treaty.

5.2. Subsidiarity

The actions envisaged by the programme are complementary to actions carried out by the Member States, notably in the field of culture and education. The Commission believes that it has a complementary role to play by proposing a specific and ambitious programme to promote the active involvement of citizens in the development of Europe, based on transnational activities. Indeed specific reflection and action at European level and the issue of co-operation and mobility, addressed by, for example, the town-twinning projects, are not systematically addressed at Member State level.

5.3. Proportionality

The proposed programme will focus on the objectives of the Treaty: it will bring common values to the fore, while respecting national and regional diversity. It will encourage active participation by citizens in the values, ideals and life of Europe as well as cooperation between Member States and third countries. The actions envisaged in this programme do not go further than what is necessary to achieve these objectives, in keeping with the principle of proportionality.

5.4. Choice of instrument

A legislative instrument would not be appropriate to promote citizen participation as described above. The proposed objectives call for the implementation of concrete actions at European level requiring appropriate financial support and could not be achieved by simple recommendations or co-operation between Member States.

5.5. Simplification

In its above-mentioned communications of 10 February and 9 March 2004, the Commission underlined the importance of profiting from the review of legal instruments to significantly simplify the design and implementation of Community instruments and to rationalise the new programmes as much as possible.

Simpler methods for beneficiaries

The Commission will examine all means currently available for reducing the constraints upon beneficiaries while respecting the financial rules in force, in particular ways of:

- simplifying forms and application methods;

- limiting, in some cases, the amount of information contained in grant agreements;

- making the award procedure more transparent and improving information for applicants;

- applying the principle of proportionality as much as possible, for example by using flat-rate systems for small contributions;

- allowing, for small grants, co-financing in kind.

In order to facilitate the administrative management of the programme, the proposal for a legal basis incorporates the derogations authorised by Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 and its implementing measures.

Developing multiannual partnership agreements

The programme will develop the principle of multiannual partnerships, based on agreed objectives, building on the analysis of the results, in order to ensure mutual benefits for both civil society and the European Union.

Rationalised management

The programme will be managed in a centralised way, either directly or indirectly. In order to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of the programme, the Commission will entrust the management of some measures to an executive agency. If necessary, the programme could also be partly managed at Member state level (centralised indirect management).

Simplification of budget lines

The programme will also simplify the financial management of these activities for the Commission, as there will be only one budget line instead of eight (administrative expenditure not included).

6. BUDGETARY IMPLICATIONS

THE COST OF THE PROGRAMME FOR THE PERIOD 2007-2013 IS EUR 2 35 million.

2005/0041 (COD)

Proposal for a

DECISION OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL

establishing for the period 2007-2013 the programme "Citizens for Europe" to promote active European citizenship

THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION,

Having regard to the Treaty establishing the European Community, and in particular Articles 151 and 308 thereof,

Having regard to the proposal from the European Commission[3],

Having regard to the opinion of the European Economic and Social Committee[4],

Having regard to the opinion of the Committee of the Regions[5],

Acting in accordance with the procedure laid down in Article 251 of the Treaty[6],

Whereas:

(1) Union citizenship should be the fundamental status of nationals of the Member States.

(2) The Community should encourage European citizens to take full advantage of all aspects of the citizenship of the European Union, which is to be promoted with due regard for subsidiarity.

(3) For citizens to give their full support to European integration, greater emphasis should therefore be placed on their common values, history and culture as key elements of their membership of a society founded on the principles of freedom, democracy and respect for human rights, while respecting their diversity.

(4) In order to bring Europe closer to its citizens and to enable them to participate fully in the construction of an ever closer Europe, there is a need to address all citizens and to involve them in transnational exchanges and cooperation activities, contributing to the forging of a sense of belonging to common European ideals.

(5) The European Parliament, in its Resolution of 15 April 1988[7], considered it desirable that a major effort be undertaken to step up contacts between citizens of different Member States and stated that specific support from the European Union for the development of twinning schemes between municipalities in different Member States is both rational and desirable.

(6) The European Council has recognised on several occasions the need to bring the European Union and its institutions closer to the citizens of the Member States. It has encouraged the Union's institutions to maintain an open, transparent and regular dialogue with civil society and to promote citizens' participation in public life and in decision-making, while emphasising the essential values that are shared by the citizens of Europe[8].

(7) The Council established in its Decision of 26 January 2004[9] a Community action programme to promote active European citizenship (civic participation), which has confirmed the need to promote sustained dialogue with civil society organisations and municipalities and to support the active involvement of citizens.

(8) Civil society organisations at European, national and regional levels are important intermediaries for reaching citizens. Their transnational cooperation should therefore be encouraged.

(9) European public policy research organisations can provide ideas and reflections to feed the debate at European level. They can also provide a link between the European institutions and the citizens, and should therefore be supported.

(10) Special attention should be paid to the balanced integration of citizens and civil society organisations from all Member States into transnational projects and activities.

(11) The candidate countries and the EFTA countries that are parties to the EEA Agreement are recognised as potential participants in Community programmes, in accordance with the agreements made with them.

(12) The Thessaloniki European Council of 19 and 20 June 2003 adopted the “Thessaloniki Agenda for the Western Balkans: moving towards European integration”, which invited the Western Balkan countries to participate in Community programmes and agencies; therefore, the Western Balkans countries should be recognised as potential participants in Community programmes.

(13) The programme should be regularly monitored and evaluated in cooperation with the Commission and the Member States in order to allow for readjustments, particularly with respect to the priorities for implementing the measures.

(14) Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 of 25 June 2002 on the Financial Regulation applicable to the general budget of the European Communities (hereinafter “the Financial Regulation”)[10] and Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2342/2002 of 23 December 2002 laying down detailed rules for the implementation of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) 1605/2002[11], which safeguard the Community’s financial interests, have to be applied taking into account the principles of simplicity and consistency in the choice of budgetary instruments, a limitation on the number of cases where the Commission retains direct responsibility for their implementation and management, and the required proportionality between the amount of resources and the administrative burden related to their use. It is also necessary to provide for specific arrangements for the application of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 and its implementation measures, as well as for the derogations from these texts necessitated by the features of the beneficiaries and the nature of the actions.

(15) Appropriate measures should also be taken to prevent irregularities and fraud and to recover funds lost or incorrectly paid or used.

(16) The Decision establishes a financial framework for the entire duration of the programme which is to be the principal point of reference for the budgetary authority within the meaning of point … of the Interinstitutional Agreement of … between the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission on budgetary discipline and improvement of the budgetary procedure.

(17) Since the objectives of the programme “Citizens for Europe” cannot be sufficiently achieved by the Member States and can therefore, by reason of the transnational and multilateral nature of the programme's actions and measures, be better achieved at Community level, the Community may adopt measures in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity as set out in Article 5 of the Treaty. In accordance with the principle of proportionality, as set out in that Article, this Decision does not go beyond what is necessary in order to achieve those objectives.

(18) The measures necessary for the implementation of this Decision should be adopted in accordance with Council Decision 1999/468/EC of 28 June 1999 laying down the procedures for the exercise of implementing powers conferred on the Commission[12].

(19) Transitional measures to monitor actions started before 31 December 2006 should be adopted, pursuant to Decision 2004/100/EC.

HAVE DECIDED AS FOLLOWS:

Article 1 Subject, matter and scope of the programme

1. This decision establishes the programme “Citizens for Europe” for the period from 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2013.

2. The programme shall contribute to the following general objectives :

- Giving citizens the opportunity to interact and participate in constructing an ever closer Europe, united in and enriched through its cultural diversity;

- Forging a European identity, based on recognised common values, history and culture;

- Enhancing mutual understanding between European citizens respecting and celebrating cultural diversity, while contributing to intercultural dialogue.

Article 2 Specific objectives of the programme

The programme shall have the following specific objectives, which shall be implemented on a transnational basis:

Bring together people from local communities across Europe to share and exchange experiences, opinions and values, to learn from history and to build for the future;

Foster action, debate and reflection related to European citizenship through cooperation between civil society organisations at European level;

Make the idea of Europe more tangible for its citizens by promoting and celebrating Europe's values and achievements, while preserving the memory of its past;

Encourage the balanced integration of citizens and civil society organisations from all Member States, contributing to intercultural dialogue and bringing to the fore both Europe’s diversity and unity, with particular attention to the activities with Member States that have recently joined the European Union.

Article 3 Actions

1. The objectives of the programme shall be pursued through support for the following actions, details of which may be found in Part I of the Annex:

Active citizens for Europe, consisting of:

town-twinning;

citizens’ projects and support measures.

Active civil society in Europe, consisting of:

structural support for European public policy research organisations (think-tanks);

structural support for organisations of civil society at European level;

support for projects initiated by civil society organisations.

Together for Europe, consisting of:

high visibility events, such as commemorations, awards, European-wide conferences;

studies, surveys and opinion polls;

information and dissemination tools.

2. In each action, priority may be given to the balanced integration of citizens and civil society organisations from all Member states, as provided for in the specific objective set out in Article 2(4).

3. Community measures may take the form of grants or public procurement contracts.

4. Community grants may be provided through specific forms such as operating grants, action grants, scholarships, prizes.

5. Public procurement contracts will cover the purchase of services, such as organisations of events, studies and research, information and dissemination tools, monitoring and evaluation.

6. To be eligible for a Community grant, the beneficiaries must satisfy the requirements set out in Part II of the Annex.

Article 4 Participation in the programme

The programme shall be open to the participation of the following countries, hereinafter referred to as the “participating countries”:

the Member States;

the EFTA States that are party to the EEA Agreement, in accordance with the provisions of that Agreement;

the candidate countries benefiting from a pre-accession strategy, in accordance with the general principles and the general terms and conditions for the participation of these countries in Community programmes laid down, respectively, in the framework agreement and the decisions of the Association Councils ;

the countries of the western Balkans, in accordance with the arrangements to be established with these countries under the framework agreements on the general principles for their participation in Community programmes.

Article 5 Access to the programme

The programme shall be open to all stakeholders promoting active European citizenship, in particular to local communities, European public policy research organisations (think-tanks), citizen’s groups and other civil society organisations such as non-governmental organisations, platforms, networks, associations and federations, trade unions.

Article 6 Cooperation with international organisations

The programme may cover joint activities with international organisations competent in the field of active citizenship, such as the Council of Europe and UNESCO, on the basis of joint contributions and in accordance with the Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 and various rules of each institution or organisation.

Article 7 Implementing measures

1. The Commission shall adopt the measures necessary for the implementation of the programme in accordance with the provisions of the Annex.

2. The following measures shall be adopted in accordance with the management procedure referred to in Article 8(2):

the arrangements for the implementation of the programme, including the annual work plan, the selection criteria and the selection procedures;

the general balance between the various actions of the programme;

the procedures for monitoring and evaluating the programme.

3. All other measures necessary for the implementation of the programme shall be adopted in accordance with the advisory procedure referred to in Article 8(3).

4. As part of the procedure mentioned in paragraph 2, the Commission may draw up guidelines for each of the actions in the Annex in order to adapt the programme to any changes of priority in the field of European active citizenship.

Article 8 Committee

1. The Commission shall be assisted by a committee, hereinafter referred to as “the Committee”.

2. Where reference is made to this paragraph, Articles 4 and 7 of Decision 1999/468/EC shall apply, having regard to the provisions of Article 8 thereof.

The period laid down in Article 4(3) of Decision 1999/468/EC shall be two months.

3. Where reference is made to this paragraph, Articles 3 and 7 of Decision 1999/468/EC shall apply, having regard to the provisions of Article 8 thereof.

4. The committee shall adopt its Rules of Procedure.

Article 9 Coherence with other instruments of the Community and of the European Union

1. The Commission shall ensure the coherence and the complementarity between this programme and instruments in other areas of action of the Community, especially education, vocational training, culture, sport, fundamental rights and freedoms, social inclusion, gender equality, combating discrimination, research and the Community external action, in particular in the context of the European Neighbourhood policy.

2. The programme may share resources with other Community and Union instruments in order to implement actions meeting the objectives of both this programme and these other instruments.

Article 10 Budgetary Resources

1. The budget for the implementation of this programme for the period referred to in Article 1 is hereby set at EUR 235 million.

2. The annual appropriations shall be authorised by the budgetary authority within the limits of the financial perspective.

Article 11 Financial provisions

1. Under the terms of Article 176(2) of Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2342/2002, the Commission may decide, in accordance with the characteristics of the beneficiaries and the nature of the actions, to exempt them from verification of the professional competencies and qualifications required to complete the proposed action or work programme.

2. Financial aid shall take the form of grants to legal persons. Grants may in certain cases be awarded to natural persons under the terms of Article 114(1) of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002.

3. The Commission may award prizes to natural or legal persons for actions or projects implemented under the programme.

4. In accordance with Article 181 of Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2342/2002, and depending on the nature of the action, flat-rate financing and/or the application of unit-cost rates may be authorised.

5. Operating grants awarded under this programme to bodies pursuing an aim of general European interest, as defined in Article 162 of Commission Regulation No 2342/2002, shall not be automatically decreased, in accordance with Article 113(2) of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 in the event of renewal.

6. For small grants, co-financing in kind may be permitted.

7. The amount of information may be limited in the case of small grants such as scholarship and individual mobility grants.

8. In specific cases such as the award of a small grant, the beneficiary need not be required to demonstrate its financial capacity to perform the planned project or the work programme.

Article 12 Protection of Community financial interests

1. The Commission shall ensure that, when actions financed under the present Decision are implemented, the financial interests of the Community are protected by the application of preventive measures against fraud, corruption and any other illegal activities, by effective checks and by the recovery of the amounts unduly paid and, if irregularities are detected, by effective, proportional and dissuasive penalties, in accordance with Council Regulations (EC, Euratom) No 2988/95 and (Euratom, EC) No 2185/96, and with Regulation (EC) No 1073/1999 of the European Parliament and of the Council.

2. For the Community actions financed under the programme, the notion of irregularity referred to in Article 1(2) of Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2988/95 shall mean any infringement of a provision of Community law or any breach of a contractual obligation resulting from an act or omission by an economic operator, which has, or would have, the effect of prejudicing the general budget of the Communities or budgets managed by them, by an unjustified item of expenditure.

3. The Commission shall reduce, suspend or recover the amount of financial assistance granted for an action if it finds irregularities, including non-compliance with the provisions of this Decision or the individual decision or the contract or agreement granting the financial support in question, or if it transpires that, without Commission approval having being sought, the action has been subjected to a change which conflicts with the nature or implementing conditions of the project.

4. If the time limits have not been observed or if only part of the allocated financial assistance is justified by the progress made with implementing an action, the Commission shall request the beneficiary to submit observations within a specified period. If the beneficiary does not give a satisfactory answer, the Commission may cancel the remaining financial assistance and demand repayment of sums already paid.

5. Any undue payment shall be repaid to the Commission. Interest shall be added to any sums not repaid in good time under the conditions laid down by the Financial regulation.

Article 13 Monitoring and Evaluation

1. The Commission shall ensure the regular monitoring of the programme. The results of the monitoring and evaluation process shall be utilised in implementing the programme.Monitoring shall include in particular the drawing up of the reports referred to in paragraph 3(a) and (c).The specific objectives may be revised according to the results of the monitoring reports.

2. The Commission shall ensure regular, external and independent evaluation of the programme.

3. The Commission shall submit to the European Parliament, the Council, the Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions:

an interim evaluation report on the results obtained and on the qualitative and quantitative aspects of the implementation of the programme not later than 31 December 2010;

a Communication on the continuation of the programme not later than 31 December 2011;

an ex-post evaluation report not later than 31 December 2015.

Article 14 Transitional provision

Actions started before 31 December 2006 pursuant to Decision 2004/100/EC of 26 January 2004 shall continue to be governed, until their completion, by the said Decision.

Article 15

This Decision shall enter into force on the twentieth day following that of its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union .

It shall apply from 1 January 2007.

Done at Brussels,

For the European Parliament For the Council

The President The President

ANNEX

I. DESCRIPTION OF ACTIONS

ACTION 1: ACTIVE CITIZENS FOR EUROPE

THIS action forms that part of the programme directed specifically at activities involving citizens, either directly or indirectly. These activities fall under two types of measures as follows:

Town-twinning

This measure is aimed at activities that involve or promote direct exchanges between European citizens through their participation in town-twinning activities. These may be one-off or pilot activities, or take the form of structured, multi-annual, multi-partner agreements following a more programmed approach and comprising a set of activities ranging from citizens meetings to specific conferences or seminars on subjects of common interest, along with related publications, organised in the context of town-twinning activities. This measure will actively contribute to strengthening mutual knowledge and understanding between citizens and between cultures.

To help implement this measure, structural support may be provided directly to the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR), a body pursuing an aim of general European interest, active in the field of town twinning.

Citizens’ projects and support measures

Under this measure, a variety of projects of transnational and cross-sectoral dimension, directly involving citizens, will be supported. The scale and scope of such projects will depend on the developments within the society and will explore, through innovative approaches, the possible responses to the identified needs. The use of new technologies, in particular Information Society Technologies, shall be encouraged. Those projects will gather citizens from different horizons, who will act together or debate on common European issues, hereby developing mutual understanding as well as raising awareness of the process of European integration.

In order to improve citizen’s projects, it is also necessary to develop support measures to exchange best practices, to pool experiences between stakeholders at local and regional levels including public authorities, and to develop new skills, for example through training.

As an indication, approximately 40% of the total budget allocated to the programme will be devoted to this action.

Action 2: Active civil society in Europe

Structural support for European public policy research organisations (think-tanks)

Bodies providing new ideas and reflections on European issues are important institutional interlocutors able to provide independent strategic, cross-sectoral recommendations to the EU institutions... They can undertake activities that feed the debate notably on citizenship of the European Union and on European values and cultures. This measure is aimed at strengthening the institutional capacity of those organisations, which are representative, provide real European added value, can bring about important multiplier effects and, finally, are able to cooperate with other beneficiaries of this programme. The strengthening of transeuropean networks is an important element in this area. Grants may be awarded on the basis of a multi-annual work programme bringing together a range of themes or activities.

Structural support may be provided directly for the association “Groupement d’études et de recherches Notre Europe”, a body pursuing an aim of general European interest.

Structural support for organisations of civil society at European level

Civil society organisations need to exist and to be able to operate and cooperate at European level in a large number of fields of general interest (e.g. common values and heritage, voluntarism, social issues). This measure will provide them with the capacity and stability to act as transnational catalysts for their members and for civil society at European level. The strengthening of transeuropean networks is an important element of this area of work. Grants may be awarded on the basis of a multi annual work programme bringing together a range of themes or activities.

Structural support may be provided directly for two bodies pursuing an aim of general European interest: the Platform of European Social NGOs and the European Movement.

Support for projects initiated by civil society organisations

Civil society organisations, such as non-governmental organisations, trade unions, federations, think tanks etc., can, through debate, publications, advocacy, and other concrete transnational projects, involve citizens or represent their interests. Introducing or building on a European dimension in the activities of civil society organisations will enable them to enhance their capacities and reach wider audiences. Direct cooperation among civil society organisations from different Member States will contribute to mutual understanding for the different cultures and point of views and to the identification of shared concerns and values. While this may be in the form of single projects, a longer-term approach will also ensure a more sustainable impact and the development of networks and synergies.

As an indication, approximately 30% of the total budget allocated to the programme will be devoted to this action.

Action 3: TOGETHER FOR EUROPE

High-visibility events

This measure will support events organised by or in cooperation with the European Commission, which are substantial in scale and scope, strike a significant chord with the peoples of Europe, help to increase their sense of belonging to the same community, make them aware of the history, achievements and values of the European Union, involve them in intercultural dialogue and contribute to the development of their European identity.

These events may include the commemoration of historical events, the celebration of European achievements, awareness-raising around specific issues, European-wide conferences and the awarding of prizes to highlight major accomplishments. The use of new technologies, in particular Information Society Technologies, shall be encouraged.

Studies

In order to get a better understanding of active citizenship at European level, the Commission will carry out studies, surveys and opinion polls.

Information and dissemination tools

Given the focus on citizens and the variety of initiatives in the field of active citizenship, comprehensive information on the various activities of the programme, on other European actions related to citizenship and on other relevant initiatives needs to be provided through an Internet portal and other tools.

Structural support may be provided directly for the “Association Jean Monnet” and for the “Centre européen Robert Schuman”, both bodies pursuing an aim of general European interest.

As an indication, approximately 15% of the total budget allocated to the programme will be devoted to this action.

II. PROGRAMME MANAGEMENT

The implementation of the programme will be guided by the principles of transparency as well as openness, to a large variety of organisations and projects. As a consequence, projects and activities will be selected, as a general rule, via open calls for proposals. Derogations will be possible only in very specific circumstances and in full compliance with article 168.1, c), d) of the implementing rules of the Financial regulation.

The programme will develop the principle of multi-annual partnerships based on agreed objectives, building on the analysis of the results, in order to ensure mutual benefits for both civil society and the European Union.

For some actions, it might be necessary to adopt an indirect centralised management.

All actions will be implemented on a transnational basis. They will encourage mobility of citizens and ideas within the European Union.

The elements of networking and focussing on the multiplier effects, including the use of information and communication technologies, will be important and will be reflected both in the types of activities and the range of organisations involved. The development of interactions and synergies among the various types of stakeholders involved in the programme will be encouraged.

The programme budget may also cover expenditure associated with the preparation, follow-up, monitoring, auditing and evaluation activities directly necessary for the management of the programme and the realisation of its objectives, in particular studies, meetings, information and publication activities, expenditure associated with the IT networks for the exchange of information and any other administrative and technical support expenditure on which the Commission may decide for the management of the programme.

The Commission may undertake information, publication and dissemination activities as appropriate. Such activities may be financed by means of grants or be organised and financed directly by the Commission, through service contracts.

III. CONTROLS AND AUDITS

For projects selected in accordance with the procedure described in Article 13(1) of this Decision, a sampling audit system will be established.

The beneficiary of a grant must make available to the Commission all supporting documents relating to expenditure for a period of five years from the date of the final payment. The beneficiary of a grant must ensure that, where applicable, supporting documents in the possession of partners or members are made available to the Commission.

The Commission may have an audit of the use made of the grant carried out either directly by its own staff or by any other qualified outside body of its choice. Such audits may be carried out throughout the lifetime of the contract and for a period of five years from the date of payment of the balance. Where appropriate, the audit findings may lead to recovery decisions by the Commission.

Commission staff and outside personnel authorised by the Commission must have appropriate access to the offices of the beneficiary and to all the information, including information in electronic format, needed in order to conduct such audits.

The Court of Auditors and the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) will have the same rights, especially of access, as the Commission.

LEGISLATIVE FINANCIAL STATEMENT

This document is intended to accompany and complement the Explanatory Memorandum. As such, when completing this Legislative Financial Statement, and without prejudice to its legibility, an attempt should be made to avoid repeating information contained in the Explanatory Memorandum. Before filling in this template, please refer to the specific Guidelines that have been drafted to provide guidance and clarification for the items below.

1. NAME OF THE PROPOSAL :

Proposal for a Decision of the EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT and of the COUNCIL establishing the programme “Citizens for Europe” promoting active European citizenship (2007-2013).

2. ABM / ABB FRAMEWORK

Policy Area(s) concerned and associated Activity/Activities:

Education and Culture – Dialogue with the citizens

3. BUDGET LINES

3.1. Budget lines (operational lines and related technical and administrative assistance lines (ex- BA lines)) including headings :

15.0601…

15.0104...

3.2. Duration of the action and of the financial impact:

7 years (01.01.2007 – 31.12.2013)

3.3. Budgetary characteristics:

Budget line | Type of expenditure | New | EFTA contribution | Contributions from applicant countries | Heading in financial perspective |

15.0601… | Non-comp | Diff[13] | NO | YES | YES | No 3 |

15.0104… | Non-comp | Non-diff | NO | YES | YES | No 3 |

4. SUMMARY OF RESOURCES

4.1 Financial Resources

4.1.1. Summary of commitment appropriations (CA) and payment appropriations (PA)

EUR million (to 3 decimal places)

Commitment Appropriations | a+c | 21,200 | 28,100 | 29,800 | 34,900 | 38,000 | 40,000 | 43,000 | 235,000 |

Payment Appropriations | b+c | 15,752 | 26,219 | 29,314 | 33,466 | 37,097 | 39,463 | 53,689 | 235,000 |

Administrative expenditure not included in reference amount[16] |

TOTAL PA including cost of Human Resources | b+c+d+e | 17,549 | 28,052 | 31,184 | 35,373 | 39,285 | 41,696 | 55,966 | 249,105 |

Co-financing details

If the proposal involves co-financing by Member States, or other bodies (please specify which), an estimate of the level of this co-financing should be indicated in the table below (additional lines may be added if different bodies are foreseen for the provision of the co-financing):

EUR million (to 3 decimal places)

Total number of human resources | 36 | 41 | 41 | 43 | 45 | 46 | 46 |

5. CHARACTERISTICS AND OBJECTIVES

Details of the context of the proposal are required in the Explanatory Memorandum. This section of the Legislative Financial Statement should include the following specific complementary information:

5.1. Need to be met in the short or long term

This is clearly identified in the explanatory Memorandum (see introduction and context of the proposal). This proposal is targeting all citizens (that is without focussing on any specific group or category). The overall approach is to involve both citizens directly and civil society organisations.

5.2. Value-added of Community involvement and coherence of the proposal with other financial instruments and possible synergy

5.2.1. Several alternatives were analysed before opting for a new programme:

Instruments other than a programme

A legislative instrument would not be appropriate to promote citizen participation as described above. The proposed objectives imply the implementation of concrete actions at a European level requiring appropriate financial support and could not be achieved by simple recommendations or co-operation between Member States.

The “no action” scenario

The option of not presenting a programme post 2006 would be politically incomprehensible at a time when the Union has undertaken to reinforce European citizenship. A promise has been given to citizens and cannot go unanswered. There would be a predictably high level of outrage and criticism of the Commission in such circumstances. In more general terms the European institutions risk being accused of not giving sufficient importance to the distance which h has arisen between them and citizens and to contradict themselves with regard to their undertakings to citizens (such as the political priorities of the Dutch presidency and the speech of Mr Barroso in his hearing at the parliament). In addition, the end of the programme would involve suppressing a series of successful activities involving citizens such as town twinning. In order to avoid a serious loss of credibility by the European institutions, the European Parliament, a strong supporter of such activities, asked the Commission to present a concrete programme proposal in 2005.

The “no change” scenario

The current programme was established with the objective of establishing a legal base for the granting of a series of subventions for the promotion of active citizenship. This programme is therefore characterised by a series of grants linked to different budget lines which while having a basic logic linking the different elements, suffers from a lack of sufficient cohesion. This programme has been largely criticised by the Parliament and civil society organisations for its lack of ambition. Simply continuing the programme would be insufficient to realise the objectives set out below.

Mainstreaming

This option is not sustainable in that no other sectoral programme can cover the objectives as set out. This programme differentiates itself from the other European initiatives specifically because of its horizontal dimension and its comprehensive approach to promoting active European citizenship.

Conclusion : the need for a new programme

In response to the emergence of the question of citizenship among the political priorities of the Union, the adoption of a new specific programme is the best option for achieving the desired objectives.

In order to respond properly to the expectations of citizens, this programme must firmly place the citizen at the centre of the actions, and is distinguished by its educational and transnational aspects. The first element gives citizens the necessary instruments to become involved at a European level, and the second creates favourable conditions for the mobility of citizens. It thus gives people the opportunity to develop their mutual understanding and to share a feeling of solidarity through the common European values that unite them. In addition, this programme integrates the principle of participative democracy introduced in article 47 of the draft establishing a constitution for Europe.

Through this approach the programme attempts to respond as closely a possible to the needs of civil society. It develops a public arena devoted to dialogue and citizenship open to all citizens and decentralised across the whole of Europe through a support to town twinning, to all types of transnational citizens' initiatives and to events with a European dimension. At the same time it encourages a structured participative process on questions linked to the construction of Europe and the values on which it is based. Finally it respects the diversity which on which the richness of the European Union is founded

5.2.2. European added-value

As indicated above, all actions will be implemented on a transnational basis. They will encourage mobility of citizens and of ideas within Europe. Twinning projects are by nature transnational, but the programme will also encourage transnational cooperation between regional organisations, NGO’s, think tanks etc. It will support the development of the transnational activities of civil society organisations and the structuring of civil society at European level. Some special events will bring more visibility to those transnational activities. Transnational debate and exchange of ideas will be supported. Studies by the Commission or research projects by think tanks will feed this debate.

The programme will pay due attention to broad geographic coverage of supported activities and projects. Special emphasis will be put on the integration of citizens and organisations from new, or future, Member states into transnational projects and networks.

5.2.3. Coherence with other financial instruments and possible synergy

Citizenship is an essential and broad concept in the EU; hence it is no surprise that many actions implemented by the European Commission relate to this wide area, but they have different objectives and different targets, as the following examples illustrate.

Within the DG Education and Culture programmes, the dimension of active citizenship is a recurrent theme. The programmes in the field of Education foresee actions promoting European citizenship. One of the objectives of the Youth programme is to promote young people’s active citizenship in general and their European citizenship in particular. It encourages voluntary work of young Europeans. The Culture programme, by fostering cultural cooperation and intercultural dialogue, also contributes to strengthening the feeling of solidarity and mutual understanding, essential for the building of a European citizenship. However, these programmes are aimed either at specific sectors (such as culture), specific groups (such as youth) or specific activities (such as education and culture) whereas the actions proposed by this programme are specifically aimed to be horizontal and inclusive, addressing issues which do not fit comfortably into the other programmes. It can, however, act as a nexus between all these activities, thus further adding value to its own actions. For example, links between schools and town twinning can easily be imagined.

In the field of Justice, Freedom and Security, the Commission has activities in relation to citizenship, for example the Preparatory action to support civil society in the ten Member States which acceded to the European Union on 1st May 2004, in the areas of the rule of law, democracy, fundamental rights, media pluralism and the fight against corruption. The aim of this action is to reinforce civil society in those countries mainly through support for Non-Governmental Organisations in promoting fundamental rights. The DG is preparing a programme on Fundamental rights and citizenship for the period 2007-2013. Those activities have a clear focus on citizenship rights and fundamental rights. The support to NGO’s therefore is limited to those promoting fundamental rights. The development of this programme of JLS and that of DG EAC are being carried out in close consultation to ensure maximum synergy.

In the context of its research activities, and more specifically on it work in the field of Citizens and governance in a knowledge-based society, the Sixth Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development has an objective of research directed towards providing a sound scientific base for the management of the transition towards a European knowledge based society, conditioned by national, regional and local policies and by decision making by individual citizens, families and other societal units. This covers scientific research on: the implications of European integration and enlargement; new forms of governance; resolution of conflicts and restoration of peace or new forms of citizenship and cultural identities. This research is relevant for policy makers and could be used to improve the EU policy in favour of the active involvement of citizens and their organisations.

In the field of communication, the Commission will be undertaking significant activities aimed at bringing the proposed constitution to the attention of citizens, and building understanding of fundamental rights and the need for active citizenship. However, this activity is top-down and informative whereas this programme has a more bottom-up and participative focus. However, when appropriate, cooperation with DG PRESS will be organised, particularly regarding Action 3 of the programme (Together for Europe).

To what regards the external relations of the EU, complementarities could be envisaged in the context of the Neighbourhood policy. The proposed programme will be open to candidate countries and to the countries of the Western Balkans, which should join the EU. It will not be open to other Third countries. However, the expertise of the programme could be useful for implementing actions involving citizens and civil society in those countries. This would be in line with the objective of tightening the relations with our neighbouring countries.

5.3. Objectives, expected results and related indicators of the proposal in the context of the ABM framework

This Education and Culture policy area aims at reinforcing the human dimension of Europe, notably by developing the feeling for a European citizenship. The current programme will contribute to this overall purpose by:

- Giving citizens the opportunity to interact and participate in constructing an ever closer Europe, united in and enriched through its cultural diversity;

- Forging a European identity, based on recognised common values, history and culture;

- Enhancing mutual understanding between European citizens respecting and celebrating cultural diversity, while contributing to intercultural dialogue.

To that end, four specific objectives (here below) have been identified; they will be implemented on a transnational basis by three sets of actions (following) which constitute the operational objectives:

Specific objective 1 : Bring together people from local communities across Europe to share and exchange experiences, opinions and values, to learn from history and to build for the future

The programme will foster the direct participation of citizens across Europe, both in the activities of the programme and in the development of the notion of a European identity. One of the most effective ways of participation is directly experiencing other cultures in an environment that fosters exchange and where people learn through involvement in issues and actions related to the essence of Europe. This intercultural exchange will contribute to the improvement of the mutual knowledge of the culture and history of the European peoples, and will therefore bring our common cultural heritage to the fore and strengthen the basis for our common future.

Specific objective 2: Foster action, debate and reflection related to European citizenship through cooperation between civil society organisations at European level

There is a need to support transnational cooperation among civil society organisations at European level. Those Europe-wide organisations, representing a vast spectrum of citizens, can act as multipliers and offer a voice in Europe for citizens, through transnational and cross-sectoral actions, debate and reflection, linked to citizenship of the European Union.

Specific objective 3: Make the idea of Europe more tangible for its citizens by promoting and celebrating Europe's values and achievements, while preserving the memory of its past

There is a need for activities addressing the widest possible audience across frontiers, built around shared ideas, values or achievements, and reaching the greatest possible number of Europeans. These activities across Europe have the objective of forging a sense of belonging to common European ideals, adding to the existing sense of national and regional identity. They will contribute to bringing the common cultural heritage to the fore.

Specific objective 4: Encourage the balanced integration of citizens and civil society organisations from all Member States, contributing to intercultural dialogue and bringing to the fore both Europe’s diversity and unity, with particular attention to the activities with Member States that have recently joined the European Union.

Without strong and full participation from citizens, and civil society organisations from the newer Member States, the development of the European space will be severely compromised. All the previous objectives will therefore take this last objective into account, which will be implemented in all the programme’s activities. Transnational cooperation will play an essential role with regard to this objective.

The above objectives will be implemented via the following sets of actions, presented below with their expected results. The elements of networking and focussing on the multiplier effects, including the use of information and communication technologies, will be important, and will be reflected both in the types of activities and the range of organisations involved. The development of interactions and synergies among the various types of stakeholders involved in the programme will be encouraged. This contributes to the notion of sustainability and building a structure which can encourage the emergence of a European active citizenship beyond the constraints and lifetime of the programme. This therefore involves not only developing and strengthening networks but also the organisations themselves. By bringing together and reflecting diversity of people and organisations, the programme can contribute to the development of a dynamic and innovative society.

Action 1: Active citizens for Europe

This action forms the part of the programme directed specifically at citizens, either directly or indirectly. These are broken down into two types of activity as follows:

- Town twinning

The measure is aimed at activities that involve or promote direct exchanges between citizens through their participation in town-twinning activities. These activities may be one-off or pilot in nature: these will include citizens meeting (approx. 1250/year) and conferences or seminars on subjects of common interest (approx 60/year). They can also take the form of structured multi-annual multi-partner agreements which take a more programmed approach (approx. 13/year). This measure will actively contribute to strengthening mutual knowledge and understanding between citizens and between cultures.

For helping in the implementation of this measure, structural support may be provided directly to the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR), a body pursuing an aim of general European interest, active in the field of town twinning.

- Citizens’ projects and support measures

Under this measure, a variety of projects of transnational and cross-sectoral dimension, directly involving citizens, will be supported (approx. 60/year). The scale and scope of such projects will depend on the evolutions within the society and will explore, through innovative approaches, the possible responses to the needs that will have been identified. Those projects will gather citizens from different horizons, who will act together or debate on common European issues, hereby developing mutual understanding as well as raising awareness of the process of European integration.

It also appears necessary to develop support measures to exchange best practices, to pool experiences between stakeholders at the local and regional levels including public authorities, and to develop new skills for example through training, in order to improve citizens’ projects.

Action 2: Active civil society in Europe

- Structural support to European public policy research organisations (think tanks)

Bodies providing new ideas and reflections on European issues are important institutional interlocutors able to provide independent strategic, cross-sectoral recommendations to the EU institutions... They can undertake activities that feed the debate notably on citizenship of the European Union and on European values and cultures. This measure is aimed at strengthening the institutional capacity of those organisations, which are representative, provide real European added value, can bring about important multiplier effects and, finally, are able to cooperate with other beneficiaries of this programme. The strengthening of transeuropean networks (3/year) is an important element in this area.

Structural support may be provided directly to the association “Groupement d’études et de recherches Notre Europe”, a body pursuing an aim of general European interest.

- Structural support to organisations of civil society at European level

Civil society organisations need to exist and to be able to operate and cooperate at European level in a large number of fields of general interest (e.g. common values and heritage, voluntarism, social issues). This measure will provide them with the capacity and stability to act as transnational catalysts for their members and for civil society at European level. The strengthening of transeuropean networks is an important element of this area. The Commission anticipates to contribute to the operating expenses of approximately 20 networks/year; in order to maximize the cost-effectiveness of this action, a sufficient amount will be allocated to relatively small operating grants (50.000-100.000 €).

Structural support may be provided directly to two bodies pursuing an aim of general European interest: the Platform of European Social NGOs and the European Movement.

- Support to projects initiated by civil society organisations

Civil society organisations, such as non-governmental organisations, trade unions, federations, think tanks, etc., can, through debate, publications, advocacy and other concrete transnational projects, involve citizens or represent their interests. Introducing or building on a European dimension in the activities of civil society organisations will enable them to enhance their capacities and reach wider audiences. Direct cooperation among civil society organisations from different Member States will contribute to mutual understanding for the different cultures and point of views and to the identification of shared concerns and values. Approx. 125 projects will be funded each year to that end.

Action 3 : Together for Europe

- High-visibility events

This measure will support events (approx. 5/year) organised by or in cooperation with the European Commission, which are substantial in scale and scope, strike a significant chord with the peoples of Europe, help to increase their sense of belonging to the same community, make them aware of the history, achievements and values of the European Union, involve them in intercultural dialogue and contribute to the development of their European identity.

- Studies

In order to get a better understanding of active citizenship at European level, the Commission will carry out studies, surveys and opinion polls (2 /year).

- Information and dissemination tools

The focus on citizens and the variety of initiatives in the field of active citizenship call for comprehensive information on the various activities of the programme, on other European actions related to citizenship and on other relevant initiatives to be provided through an Internet portal and other tools.

Structural support may be provided directly to the “Association Jean Monnet” and to the “Centre européen Robert Schuman”, both bodies pursuing an aim of general European interest.

The following table presents the indicators planned for measuring the results and impact of the programme activities:

Objectives | Indicators |

General The general objectives are to contribute to: |

Giving citizens the opportunity to interact and participate in constructing an ever closer Europe, united in and enriched through its cultural diversity | Change in behaviour of programme participants |

Forging a European identity, based on recognised common values, history and culture | Change in perceptions of programme participants |

Enhancing mutual understanding between European citizens respecting and celebrating cultural diversity, while contributing to intercultural dialogue | Change in attitudes of programme participants |

Specific | Indicators |

Bring together people from local communities across Europe to share and exchange experiences, opinions and values, to learn from history and to build for the future | Proportion of launched/completed projects that specifically seek/sought to bring citizens together Number of citizens taking part, via the medium of the programme, in exchanges and collaborations Number of communities taking part, via the medium of the programme, in exchanges and collaborations Proportion of relevant completed projects that, if not funded by the programme, would probably not have been undertaken (based on survey of participants) |

Foster action, debate and reflection related to European citizenship through cooperation between civil society organisations at European level | Proportion of launched/completed projects that specifically seek/sought to facilitate a structured and dynamic civil society Extent of new knowledge and ideas which have been developed with the support of the programme Proportion of relevant projects that, if not funded by the programme, would probably not have been implemented (based on survey of participants) |

Make the idea of Europe more tangible for its citizens by promoting and celebrating Europe's values and achievements, while preserving the memory of its past | Press and media coverage of the events – qualitative and quantitative |

Encourage the balanced integration of citizens and civil society organisations from all Member States, contributing to intercultural dialogue and bringing to the fore both Europe’s diversity and unity, with particular attention to the activities with Member States that have recently joined the European Union | Proportion of launched/completed projects that specifically seek/sought to bring organisations together Proportion of launched/completed projects that specifically seek/sought to involvement of new Member State and candidate country organisations and citizens Increase in involvement in transnational activities by participants from new Member States and the candidate countries Proportion of relevant projects that, if not funded by the programme, would probably not have been implemented (based on survey of participants) |

Operational | Indicators |

Active citizens for Europe: town twinning citizens projects and support measures | Number of town twinning projects Proportion of total programme budget used to support town twinning Number of projects to encourage active citizenship launched Number of support measures funded Proportion of total programme budget used to support citizens’ projects and support measures Level of use of information portal Proportion of total programme budget used to support this operational objective (indicative target 40 %). |

Active civil society in Europe: - Structural support of European public policy research organisations - Structural support to organisations of civil society at European level - Support to projects initiated by civil society organisations | Number of actions involving policy research organisations Number of supported public policy research organisations Proportion of total programme budget used to support policy research organisations Number of European organisations active in the field of civil society supported Proportion of total programme budget used to support such organisations Number of projects supported Level of use of information portal Proportion of total programme budget used to support this operational objective (indicative target 30 %). |

Together for Europe | Number of events supported Number of conferences supported Level of use of information portal Number of funded studies and research projects Proportion of total programme budget used to support this operational objective (indicative target 15 %). |

The percentages mentioned under each action are indicative. The total does not cover the totality of the programme’s budget, in order to preserve some flexibility and to take into account administrative expenditures.

5.4. Method of Implementation (indicative)

Show below the method(s)[18] chosen for the implementation of the action.

X Centralised Management

X Directly by the Commission

X Indirectly by delegation to:

X Executive Agencies

ٱ bodies set up by the Communities as referred to in art. 185 of the Financial Regulation

X National public-sector bodies/bodies with public-service mission

ٱ Shared or decentralised management

ٱ With Member states

ٱ With Third countries

ٱ Joint management with international organisations (please specify)

Relevant comments:

Most of the actions will be implemented through centralised management as follows:

- The Commission will manage directly strategic activities, in particular those involving the development of partnerships or the organisation of major events: structural support to think tanks and to civil society networks, town-twinning support measures, citizen’s initiatives, studies and polls, and most of the special events and dissemination of information.

- The Executive Agency will manage by delegation smaller-scale projects: town-twinning projects (citizen’s meetings, conferences and seminars) and civil society projects.

- In specific circumstances, and in specific countries, the Commission could decide to entrust national public-sector bodies/bodies with public service mission with the management of the programme.

6. MONITORING AND EVALUATION

6. 1. Monitoring system

The specific objectives of the programme and the actions will be subject to monitoring. Data will be collected as follows:

- All participants to the programme will fill in a survey before and after the action takes place, in order to measure the changes in behaviour, perceptions and attitude; this survey will also enquire on whether projects, would or not have been undertaken, had they not been funded by the programme.

- All relevant quantitative data will be collected by the managing institution/body.

- Information providing a measure of the performance, results and impact of the programme will be also taken from audit reports on a sample of programme beneficiaries (30 per year).

- The information portal will include a counter.

6.2. Evaluation

6.2.1. Ex-ante evaluation

The ex-ante evaluation was carried out by the Commission (August 2004-February 2005), with the support of an external consultant. As part of this exercise, an extensive consultation has been carried out of the problems and issues to be addressed, the target users, key objectives and potential options for implementation, in three steps:

a) Public on-line consultation (15 December 2004- 15 February 2005)

The online consultation was done with the IPM tool and resulted in more than thousand responses, including around 700 from organisations and around 300 from individuals. Almost all respondents agreed with the need for a new programme. This highlights that there is overwhelming support for a new programme. The overall approach proposed, of involving both citizens directly and civil society organisations, was massively supported. The success of the current activities, such as town twinning and operating costs of organisations, was evidenced by the strong support for pursuing them. The main innovations sought are multi-annual projects, pooling of experience between local projects of different Member States, development of innovative partnerships/cooperation with new partners and major events mobilizing citizens at EU level, notably in the context of intercultural dialogue. The ideas of exchanging good practices in the voluntary sector and the networking of think tanks were also welcomed. Simplification of procedures is requested by a large number of respondents.

Full results will soon be available on DG EAC website as well as on the “Your Voice in Europe” page.

b) Bilateral meetings with key stakeholders (January-February 2005)

These bilateral contacts provide the opportunity to have an in-depth discussion with a limited number of key interlocutors representing a variety of “profiles”[19].

Meeting reports are available (EAC.D.4).

c) Consultation Forum (3-4 February 2005)

Approximately 350 participants took part in the consultative forum, covering the full range of stakeholders including NGOs, think tanks, regional and municipal representatives, European networks, advocacy groups, trade unions and European associations. The transnational dimension was considered essential. The intercultural dimension was underlined, as well as the need to pay particular attention to building bridges between the citizens of “new”, “old” and future Member States. There was a demand for a better recognition of the aspect of volunteering which is intrinsic to this field. There was also a view that the programme should benefit both individual citizens and Europe as a whole. Another conclusion was that the action of bringing the various stakeholders together should be built upon in future. It was suggested that there should be more scope for events with a certain visibility and to celebrate together certain achievements and key moments of our history.

Continuity came out as a recurrent theme, without it being contradictory to the introduction of innovation. There was strong support for a continuation of the town-twinning activities. The situation was the same as regards support for operating costs of NGOs and other civil society organisations, reflecting their need for sufficient public sources of funding in order to preserve their independence. Already well established organisations like trade unions may use their networks for contributing and debating on European issues. European think tanks activities have to be supported, strengthened and structured. Many of the issues raised at the forum related to implementation and the need for simplification of the procedures.

The notion of multi-annual funding was seen as an opportunity to actively assist in capacity building and enhanced stability in all activities although scope for short-term actions should be maintained, be it for innovative actions or for small entities (particularly in the town-twinning area). Cross-fertilisation between the various activities carried out under the programme was recommended, for example between town-twinning and NGOs. Networking was also considered as important. This networking should not only be between the same types of stakeholders but between them – for example, linking think tanks (ideas) and civil society organisations (action). It was also asked that bridges between this programme and other Commission programmes be ensured (in the fields of Youth, Education, Justice, Social Affairs…).

Full transcription of the debates as well as the parallel sessions reports will be incorporated into a CDRom, that will be sent to all participants, and also be available on DG EAC website.

These findings were incorporated in the ex-ante evaluation analysis and taken into account in the programme proposal. They underline the necessity to respond to the needs of the citizens and of civil society organisations for a support scheme to transnational activities in the field of active citizenship. They stress the complementarity with other programmes and activities of the European Union, especially those implemented by the Directorate General for Press and Communication, the Directorate General for Research and the Directorate General for Justice, Freedom and Security.

6.2.2. Measures taken following an intermediate/ex-post evaluation (lessons learned from similar experiences in the past)

At the time of this proposal, the current programme has been implemented for one year only. An ex-post evaluation of the current programme (2004-2006) is due by December 2007; a draft report is anticipated in the beginning of 2006.

6.2.3. Terms and frequency of future evaluation

Mid-term report

The first report will be drawn up three years after the start of the programme (31 December 2010 at the latest). The object of this report is to provide an initial assessment of the results obtained at the halfway stage so that any changes or adjustments that are deemed necessary may be made for the second half of the programme (31 December 2011 at the latest).

Ex-post evaluation

The ex-post report on the impact of the action in question will be drawn up at the end of the seven-year programme (31 December 2015 at the latest). The object of this report is to assess the comparative results of support systems in the light of the programme objectives. As with the mid-term report, the Commission will call on outside consultants for assistance.

7. Anti-fraud measures

For projects selected in accordance with the procedure described in Article 13(1) of this Decision, a sampling audit system will be established.

The beneficiary of a grant shall make available to the Commission all supporting documents relating to expenditure for a period of five years reckoned from the date of the final payment. The beneficiary of a grant shall ensure that, where applicable, supporting documents in the possession of partners or members are made available to the Commission.

The Commission may have an audit of the use made of the grant carried out either directly by its own staff or by any other qualified outside body of its choice. Such audits may be carried out throughout the lifetime of the contract and for a period of five years from the date of payment of the balance. Where appropriate, the audit findings may lead to recovery decisions by the Commission.

Commission staff and outside personnel authorised by the Commission shall have appropriate access to the offices of the beneficiary and to all the information, including information in electronic format, needed in order to conduct such audits.

The Court of Auditors and the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) shall enjoy the same rights, especially of access, as the Commission.

In order to protect the European Communities' financial interests against fraud and other irregularities, the Commission may carry out on-the-spot checks and inspections under this programme in accordance with Council Regulation (Euratom, EC) No 2185/96.[20] Where necessary, investigations shall be conducted by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) and these shall be governed by Regulation (EC) No 1073/1999 of the European Parliament and of the Council[21].

8. DETAILS OF RESOURCES

8.1. Objectives of the proposal in terms of their financial cost

Commitment appropriations in EUR million (to 3 decimal places)

2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 |

Officials or temporary staff[23] (15 01 01) | A*/AD | 3 | 3 | 3 | 3 | 4 | 4 | 4 |

B*, C*/AST | 7 | 7 | 7 | 7 | 8 | 8 | 8 |

Staff financed[24] by art. 15 01 02 | 4 | 4 | 4 | 4 | 4 | 4 | 4 |

Other staff[25] financed by art. 15 01 04/05 | 22 | 27 | 27 | 29 | 29 | 30 | 30 |

TOTAL | 36 | 41 | 41 | 43 | 45 | 46 | 46 |

8.2.2. Description of tasks deriving from the action

8.2.3. Sources of human resources (statutory)

(When more than one source is stated, please indicate the number of posts originating from each of the sources)

( Posts currently allocated to the management of the programme to be replaced or extended

( Posts pre-allocated within the APS/PDB exercise for year n

( Posts to be requested in the next APS/PDB procedure

( Posts to be redeployed using existing resources within the managing service (internal redeployment)

( Posts required for year n although not foreseen in the APS/PDB exercise of the year in question

8.2.4. Other Administrative expenditure included in reference amount (15 01 04… – Expenditure on administrative management)

EUR million (to 3 decimal places)

Officials and temporary staff (15 01 01) | 1,127 | 1,150 | 1,173 | 1,197 | 1,463 | 1,493 | 1,523 |

Staff financed by art 15 01 02 (auxiliary, END, contract staff, etc.) | 0,232 | 0,236 | 0,241 | 0,245 | 0,251 | 0,256 | 0,261 |

Total cost of Human Resources and associated costs (NOT in reference amount) | 1,359 | 1,386 | 1,414 | 1,442 | 1,714 | 1,749 | 1,784 |

Calculation– Officials and Temporary agents (2005): 108.000 € Indexation: 1,040 (2007), 1,061 (2008), 1,082 (2009), 1,104 (2010), 1,126 (2011), 1,149 (2012), 1,172 (2013) 10 (12) FTE: 3(4) A – 1(2) B – 6 C |

Calculation– Staff financed under art. 15 01 02 Contract staff: (1) A: 87.014 € - (1) B: 51.140 € - (1) C: 40.037 € - (1) END: 44.316 € Indexation: 1,040 (2007), 1,061 (2008), 1,082 (2009), 1,104 (2010), 1,126 (2011), 1,149 (2012), 1,172 (2013) 3 FTE: 1A – 1B – 1C & 1 FTE: (END) |

The costs for staff under point 8.2.5 are an estimate for the period 2007-2013. Taking into account the increase of operational credits year after year, these human resources would pass from 14 men/years in 2007 to 16 men/years in 2013. No additional human resources are needed in 2007 compared with the situation in 2006. 8.2.6 Other administrative expenditure not included in reference amount EUR million (to 3 decimal places) |

| 2007 |2008 |2009 |2010 |2011 |2012 |2013 |TOTAL | |15 01 02 11 01 – Missions |0,042 |0,042 |0,043 |0,044 |0,045 |0,046 |0,047 | 0,309 | |15 01 02 11 02 – Meetings & Conferences |0,328 |0,336 |0,342 |0,349 |0,356 |0,363 |0,370 | 2,444 | |15 01 02 11 03 – Committees[27] |0,068 |0,069 |0,071 |0,072 |0,073 |0,075 |0,076 | 0,504 | |15 01 02 11 04 – Studies & consultations | | | | | | | | | |15 01 02 11 05 - Information systems | | | | | | | | | | Total Other Management Expenditure

(15 01 02 11) |0,438 |0,447 |0,456 |0,465 |0,474 |0,484 |0,493 |3,257 | |

3 Other expenditure of an administrative nature (specify including reference to budget line)

| | | | | | | | | | Total Administrative expenditure, other than human resources and associated costs (NOT included in reference amount) |0,438 |0,447 |0,456 |0,465 |0,474 |0,484 |0,493 |3,257 | |Calculation - Other administrative expenditure not included in reference amount

Missions: 5persons * 10missions * 825 € (average)

Meetings: 2meetings * 50persons * (860 € + (2*150 €))

Meetings: 3meetings * 25persons * 860 € (management Committee)

Conference: Annual conference - (approx. 200.000 €)

The needs for human and administrative resources shall be covered within the allocation granted to the managing DG in the framework of the annual allocation procedure. The allocation of posts should take into account an eventual reallocation of posts between departments on the basis of the new financial perspectives.

[1] OJ L 30, 2.2.2004, p. 6.

[2] COM(2004) 101, 10.2.2004.

[3] OJ C , , p. .

[4] OJ C , , p. .

[5] OJ C , , p. .

[6] OJ C , , p. .

[7] OJ C 122, 9.5.1988, p. 38.

[8] Conclusions of the European Councils of 7-9 December 2000, 14-15 December 2001 (and annexed Laeken Declaration), 4-5 November 2004 and 16-17 December 2004.

[9] Decision 2004/100/EC - OJ L 30, 4.2.2004, p. 6.

[10] OJ L 248, 16.9.2002, p. 1.

[11] OJ L 357, 31.12.2002, p. 1.

[12] OJ L 184, 17.7.1999, p. 23.

[13] Differentiated appropriations.

[14] Expenditure that does not fall under Chapter xx 01 of the Title xx concerned.

[15] Expenditure within article xx 01 04 of Title xx.

[16] Expenditure within chapter xx 01 other than articles xx 01 04 or xx 01 05.

[17] See points 19 and 24 of the Interinstitutional agreement.

[18] If more than one method is indicated please provide additional details in the "Relevant comments" section of this point.

[19] European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC), Platform of European Social NGOs, Solidar, Euro citoyen action et service (ECAS), Fondation pour les générations futures, COMECE (Confédération des Episcopats de la CE), European Policy Centre (EPC), AVSO (Association of Voluntary Service Organisations) and SCI (Service Civil International), Association « Notre Europe »,Four Town Twinning Committees (during the Forum).

[20] OJ L 292, 15.11.1996, p. 2.

[21] OJ L 136, 31.5.1999, p. 1.

[22] As described under Section 5.3.

[23] Cost of which is NOT covered by the reference amount.

[24] Cost of which is NOT covered by the reference amount.

[25] Cost of which is included within the reference amount.

[26] Reference should be made to the specific legislative financial statement for the Executive Agency(ies) concerned.

[27] Specify the type of committee and the group to which it belongs.

Annex 1