The Pradeshiya Sabha Act No 15 of 1987 is undoubtedly significant in being the only legal administrative tool governing Pradeshiya Sabhas in Sri Lanka. All subsequent amendments have been incorporated in to this act including the recently approved Local Authorities (Special Provisions) Act, No. 21 of 2012, as covering the general and special requirements of all local authorities in the country. When considering the regional diversity and identities of these local government bodies, it can be observed that the priorities of those authorities vary significantly. These variances are due to regional differences and therefore deserve special attention. In particular, structures and systems relevant to physical planning of these councils followed earlier had been destroyed due to the three decade long war.
Following the conclusion of war, the situation in the Northern Province is changing dramatically through post war planning processes and with these initiatives the regional landscape of the Northern Province is set to undergo an era of exemplary transformation in the near future.
Assessing above mentioned circumstances, the creation of By-laws becomes priority to formalize the role and responsibilities and other common necessities vested with local authorities as well as administration and governance of these bodies. Therefore, these standard By-law drafts are presented to support the legal background of Local Government Authorities as well as better facilitate the By-Law drafting process.
I take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude to all those who contributed to this valuable work including Mr. H.G.Cyril. Jayatissa, former Assistant Commissioner of Local Government, (Senior Consultant – Legal and Local Governance), a number of other Chairmen, elected members and officials of Local Government Authorities in Vavuniya, Mannar, Kilinochchi and Jaffna districts, and my colleagues in the Governance Programme Unit.
Head, Governance Programme, (CPA) 2013.