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Financial aspects of political decentralization in Spain

By J V Sevilla Segura

Abstract

The Spanish Constitution of 1978 introduced a dramatic change into the political organization by decentralizing the existing State into seventeen regional governments with a broad range of authority. This transformation involved a 'services transfer process' from the central government and a simultaneous evaluation of the financial resources needed by the regional governments. The paper contains an analysis of the main features of this process, focusing on the various problems that have arisen in the estimation of the cost of the services transferred. Finally, some recommendations are offered for the future multilevel public finance system, which are in accordance with the present Spanish regulations on this subject.

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