Barcelona city council's Code of Ethics and Conduct
Committed to adopting measures to improve everyone's confidence in institutions and their representatives, Barcelona City Council is working to ensure institutional integrity, access to public information and accountability. This was the aim behind the City Council’s approval of the Code of Ethics and Conduct, having the nature of a general regulatory provision.
The right of all individuals to good administration is incorporated in Article 41 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (declared in 2000) and is expressly recognised under Article 30 of the Statute of Autonomy of Catalonia, which affirms that "everyone has the right to being treated impartially and objectively by the Catalan public authorities, in the affairs that affect them, and to the action taken by the public authorities being proportionate to the ends that justify it".
The European Charter for Safeguarding Human Rights in the City, which regulates rights relating to the local democratic authority, protects the principle of effectiveness of public services and the principle of transparency.
The Citizen Charter - Barcelona Charter of Rights and Duties, for its part, recognises the right of citizens to relate impartially and objectively to the Municipal Authority, to be treated with respect and deference by the authorities and municipal staff and for the municipal action to be proportionate to the ends that justify it.
Good governance and good administration, including binding legal obligations on public servants and limitations on discretionary powers, require the adoption of tools for guaranteeing their compliance, such as the design of an ethical infrastructure that integrates the framework of institutional integrity, where the drafting and approval of a code of ethics and conduct become a key piece, together with the effective mechanisms of responsibility and control, which also guarantee citizen vigilance.
Barcelona City Council’s commitment to enforcing these obligations and guaranteeing the exercise of the corresponding rights is indisputable and with a history route going back to eras prior to their configuration in the international regulatory tools cited. So, Act 22/1998, of 30 December, of the Barcelona Municipal Charter expressly provides for the regulation of one of these tools, conferring powers on the Full Municipal Council to approve the Code of Ethics for the actions of all staff at the service of the municipality.
Barcelona City Council now wants to strengthen and renew its commitment to adopting measures to improve everyone's confidence in institutions and their representatives and ensure institutional integrity and ethics, together with other initiatives linked to transparency, access to public information and accountability.
This is the aim behind the City Council’s proposal to approve this code of conduct (henceforth, the Code), which has the nature of a general regulatory provision, in accordance with the terms of reference established under Article 55(3) of Act 19/2014, of 29 December, on transparency, access to public information and good governance, in the exercise of the powers of self-organisation which it is granted under its special system and for the obligations that the individuals it is aimed at must assume on joining certain essential levels of the municipal organisation.
The drafting of this Code takes its inspiration, among other things, from Recommendation 60 (1999), of the Council of Europe, on the European code of conduct for the political integrity of local and regional elected representatives; from Recommendation (2000) 10, of the Council of Europe, on Codes of Conduct for Public Officials and its explanatory memorandum; and from the European Code of Good Administrative Behaviour, approved by the European Parliament in 2001, under Article 41 of the European Charter of Fundamental Rights.
The Code contains the ethical values and principles of good governance, which must be present in and shape every municipal action, and regulates the rules of conduct which must necessarily be observed by the individuals they apply to, in accordance with the legal provisions determining these principles of action, regarding which the City Council believes that more details should to be added or special emphasis given, without prejudice to their subjection to legislation and the law, which is the source of legitimacy of their actions.
It is, therefore, about determining the ethical principles and values that all municipal actions have to be shaped by and which elected members and managerial staff must abide by and promote, and about regulating the rules of conduct that such individuals must comply with and which may be the basis for requiring corresponding responsibility through the exercise of disciplinary powers in the event of any breach. The contents of this Code are not to apply to all the other public employees, whose extension provides for coordination to comply with the reference terms of the Municipal Charter within the framework of the basic Law Statute of public employment and following agreement with union representatives, as a result of collective negotiating; all that, without prejudice to their value as an exemplary feature for the entire municipal organisation.
The Code applies to Barcelona City Council and any organisations that are answerable or linked to it, which may be included within what we could call the municipal public sector. From a subjective point of view, the Code is aimed at elected members and managerial staff (made up of individuals who, under 52(1) of Act 22/1998, of 30 December, on the Barcelona Municipal Charter, have the status of managerial and senior-management staff). These principles of action and rules of conduct also shape the actions and are binding on temporary staff occupying positions of trust and special advice in accordance with the duties they have been assigned.
As for its content, in accordance with the consequences of the above, the Code contains the ethical values and principles which are generally required in any action by elected officials, managerial staff and temporary municipal staff, as well as not just general rules of conduct but also the specific established for tackling potential conflicts of interest. It has a special impact here on guaranteeing an objective, impartial and exemplary action and also regulates additional guidelines on conduct that help to prevent conflicts of interest in public procurement and promotional activities. It also expressly provides for rules of conduct in the area of staff management, public resources and transparency.
The Code also includes an obligation to implement mechanisms for disseminating and training in its values, principles and rules of conduct and regulates the mechanisms and procedures aimed at ensuring their effectiveness, assessment and impetus. In this regard, it is envisaged that the Ethics Committee, with a balanced, diverse and experienced composition, will be responsible for promoting, monitoring and assessing compliance with the Code.
As a closing clause for mechanisms intended to ensure its effectiveness and prevent the Code from becoming a mere policy platform, under the legislation in force, failure to abide by the rules of conduct governed by this Code is expected to constitute an offence and be disciplined fully respecting the principle reservation of law and in accordance with the procedures established by the general regulations for administrative procedures.
This Code, at the suggestion of the Government Commission, is processed in accordance with the regulatory procedure provided for in Articles 108 to 114 of the Municipal Framework Regulations and approved at a Full Municipal Council Meeting in the exercise of the powers envisaged in Article 11(1), sections b) and e) of Act 22/1998, of 30 December, of the Barcelona Municipal Charter.
Article 1. Subject matter.
This Code aims to set out the principles, ethical values and rules of conduct which, in the exercise of the functions and competence granted, must be observed by the individuals it is addressed to and to regulate the system for monitoring and assessing the Code to ensure its effectiveness.
Article 2. Purposes.
This Code has the following purposes:
a) To declare this City Council's ethical values and principles of act and good governance.
b) To determine the rules of conduct and specify the mandates and prohibitions that must be observed by the individuals it is addressed to.
c) To provide tools for resolving ethical disputes that may arise from the people it is addressed to, in accordance with the functions and competence granted to them.
d) To inform everyone of the behaviour and treatment that they must receive from the individuals bound by this Code.
e) To ensure integrity, efficiency, and transparency in the management of the City Council and its subsidiaries.
f) To ensure comprehensive and transparent action from the individuals bound by the Code in exercising their functions.
Article 3. Scope of application.
3.1. The Code can apply within the scope of Barcelona City Council and municipal organisations from any area linked or answerable to the City Council (independent bodies, public business organisations, municipal trading companies or with a majority municipal shareholding and consortia, foundations and associations answerable to Barcelona City Council).
3.2. The general principles and values specified in this Code must be taken into account when specifying, in contractual type specifications, the rules and agreements governing the granting of subsidies, the ethical principles and the rules of conduct that contractors and beneficiaries have to adapt their activities to.
The City Council will adopt the measures provided for in the previous paragraph so that the organisations managing municipally owned services can also assume the general principles and rules of conduct that appear in this Code.
3.3. The individuals this Code is addressed to and who are accordingly bound by it are all those connected to Barcelona City Council with the functions and competence granted to them, as stated below:
a) Elected members.
c) District councillors.
d) Heads or members or government bodies of municipal organisations linked or answerable to the City Council.
d) Managerial staff at Barcelona City Council and the equivalent at municipal organisations linked or answerable to the City Council. For the purposes of this Code, managerial staff shall be understood as any head of a managerial body, classed as such in the provisions or other municipal organisational instruments and, more specifically:
e.1) Senior-management staff: senior-managerial bodies include municipal manager’s offices, area or sector or district manager’s offices, municipal organisations linked or answerable to those and similar bodies, as well as the staff who have signed a senior-management contract and can commit externally to the municipal organisation.
e.2) Service-directorate staff: the service directorates are level-28 and 29 posts at the City Council and municipal bodies linked or answerable to the City Council, as stipulated by the catalogue of positions and the decrees on organisational structures and scaling.
However, for the purposes of this Code, staff within this section will be considered as senior management when they hold positions of special responsibility and play a significant role in decision-making, either through delegation or assignment of tasks typically associated with senior positions.
f) The heads of the City Council’s General Secretary's Office, General Audit and the Treasury.
g) Temporary staff assigned to the City Council and to municipal organisations linked or answerable to the City Council who occupy positions of trust or special advice.
For the purposes of Act 19/2014, of 29 December, on transparency, access to public information and good governance, senior positions shall be deemed those addressed by the Code listed in sections a), b), c), d), e) (1) and (f) of this Article and those of sections e) (2) where the circumstances stated in the second paragraph of the same section arise.
Article 4. Nature.
This Code is a general regulatory provision whose application may lead to the formulation of recommendations for the municipal management's reform and improvement and which, in the event of non-compliance, may result in the imposition of responsibilities on the recipient persons in accordance with the applicable regulations.
Article 5. Ethical principles.
1. The individuals who are subject to this Code, in the tasks and powers they are given, must act in accordance with the following ethical principles:
a) Human rights: they must ensure that internationally recognised human rights are abided by and safeguarded and that the fundamental rights, public freedoms and statutory rights of all individuals are abided by and safeguarded.
b) Legality: they must guarantee that the principle of legality is safeguarded and abided by, ensuring compliance with the current legal system in place.
c) They must adapt the management and application of public resources to the budgetary legality and to the purposes for which they have been planned, acting, in any case, under the principles of objectivity, effectiveness, economy and efficiency in the management of public resources.
d) Institutional loyalty: they will act respecting the legitimate exercise of competencies for other administrations and those who represent them, considering all the involved public interests.
e) Equality: they must guarantee equal treatment of every individual, preventing any discrimination on the grounds of birth, racial or ethnic origin, gender, sex, sexual orientation, religion or beliefs, opinion, disability, age or any other circumstance, and always acting objectively.
f) In their municipal roles, they must promote the social inclusion of the most underprivileged groups, foster tolerance and social diversity, and ensure cohesion. They must also initiate actions to enhance and ensure genuine, effective equality between men and women.
g) Impartiality: they must act legitimately and adopt decisions with impartiality, ensuring the necessary conditions for independent action for the purposes of representing every city resident and not certain political groups or interests, and not subject to conflicts of interest and always for the benefit of the public interest.
Exercising a duty must be at the exclusive service of general interests and with a vocation for public service, without being subject to any conflict of interest, whether real, potential or apparent and with the obligation of abstaining from taking part in issues where there is a legal ground for abstention or a risk to impartiality, as the legal requirements make clear.
They must use the information they have access to from their position for the benefit of the public interest, without obtaining any advantage to themselves or others, and maintain due confidentiality of any facts or information known to them from the exercise of their duties or powers.
h) Objectivity: they must act taking into account all the elements at play and having considered them appropriately, independently of their own beliefs or feelings.
i) Integrity: they must act in accordance with the values, principles and rules which apply in the exercise of a public position, free of influences from particular interests, without abusing their position to obtain undue benefits.
j) Exemplariness: they must act in accordance with the principle of loyalty to and good faith with the City Council, contributing to the institution's prestige, dignity and image without adopting any form of behaviour or attitude that may harm that image.
k) Respect: they must treat all individuals with respect and due courtesy and condemn any form of violent behaviour.
l) Public trust: they must always behave in such a way that the public trusts the integrity, impartiality and effectiveness of their actions.
m) Proximity: they must adapt their actions to the needs and special features of individuals and the area.
n) Accountability: they must use the set of mechanisms that enable their goals and results to be justifiably explained, and they must meet the needs and interests that have given them their legitimacy and been affected by their actions.
o) Transparency: they must be transparent in the way they carry out their actions and adopt acts and decisions relating to the management of the public affairs they have jurisdiction over, publishing official activities, acts linked to these affairs, and offering due information, which must be useful, truthful, up to date, understandable and, where possible, in open and reusable formats.
p) Modernisation: they must promote the use of new technologies in an accessible way and guarantee the use of means and systems that strengthen interaction with city residents in a flexible, safe and understandable way, giving priority to the use of free software and promoting the transition of current technology to this format.
2. These principles inspire the application and interpretation of rules of conduct that are specified in the following chapter and, in any case, must govern the action of individuals subject to this Code.
Article 6. Values of good governance.
Individuals subject to this Code must act in accordance with the following values of good governance:
a) To satisfy the general public interest by meeting the various social, economic, cultural and environmental needs of everyone, above any private and partisan interest, in accordance with the principles of budgetary availability and sufficiency.
b) To guarantee citizen participation in public affairs and in municipal decision-making processes by promoting dialogue with the social and economic sectors for the purposes of applying the principle of citizen participation under Article 8 of Act 22/1998, of 30 December, of the Barcelona Municipal Charter.
c) To quickly meet citizen needs, in accordance with the trust they have received through universal suffrage and proposals made through citizen-participation channels, by promoting the political co-responsibility of all parties.
d) To guarantee that elected members attend to and answer city residents who so request, as representatives chosen by universal suffrage.
e) To act with maximum political and social consensus, especially when obtaining responses to society’s most pressing demands, by encouraging a way relational and consensual way of governing that promotes participatory channels for city residents and social players.
f) To promote the establishment of an administration that is receptive and accessible to individuals’ requests, they must use clear and understandable administrative language, simplify and expedite administrative procedures, and eliminate excessive bureaucratic burdens, all while complying with laws concerning the co-official languages.
g) To promote coordination between public administrations.
h) To publish quality commitments to city residents through service charters and systems and instruments that enable continuous assessments of and improvements to public services.
i) To guarantee the quality of the services under their responsibility and the enforcement of users’ human rights.
j) To promote the Catalan language and Catalan culture, with respect for and attention to cultural diversity, without prejudice to the language rights of city residents to use any of the official languages, in accordance with the current regulations in force.
k) To guarantee, within the framework of the official acts and other public activities, everyone’s freedom of conscience and religion, as well as cooperation with all society’s religious beliefs, according to the secular position of the City Council and a commitment to defending human rights.
l) To guarantee institutional neutrality in the cultural, leisure and sports events organised by the City Council.
m) To guarantee fast responses to the initiatives prepared and delivered by municipal groups to the Government team
Article 7. General rules of conduct.
Individuals subject to this Code must adapt their behaviour to the following general rules in all areas of action:
a) To treat everyone they deal with, with respect, cordiality and due consideration.
In particular, elected officials must maintain exemplary treatment of everyone and other elected officials.
b) To exercise their powers and responsibilities in such a way as prevent any harm to the Corporation's prestige.
c) In the case of holding office in the executive and managerial political-party bodies and other representative elective offices, to exercise their powers and responsibilities without undermining or compromising their responsibilities in the Corporation.
d) To adopt decisions in accordance with the principles of objectivity and legality, taking into consideration any statements made by municipal experts in the relevant reports and all the other elements and interests at play, as well as those legitimately highlighting the individuals concerned and others.
e) To express their decisions outwardly and justify them, avoiding any form of discrimination and arbitrariness, with objective reasons for them and the elements that show their proportionality, impartiality and conformity with the public interest.
f) To hold their office with absolute dedication in accordance with the provisions established by legislation on incompatibilities.
g) Any holder of the office shall be under an obligation to justify their absence from the collegiate bodies they are part of and from those they are required to take part in or intervene.
Elected officials must exercise their powers and responsibilities in accordance with the duties making up their set of rules, the applicable regulations and, in particular, the Framework Municipal Regulations (ROM), and with full observance of the legislation that applies to them regarding dedication and incompatibilities.
Receipt of remuneration by elected full-time officials is incompatible with any other financial remuneration borne by the budgets of any public administration or any entity, body or company that they are answerable or linked to, as is the exercise of other activities, with the exception of compensation for costs incurred in exercising their official duties. Elected officials may receive allowances for expenses incurred for attending sessions of governing collegiate bodies of entities and companies that are not answerable to the City Council and must inform the City Council of any remuneration they receive from other bodies because of their position, remuneration that will be published in Barcelona City Council’s transparency portal, available to city residents, under the municipal activity’s governing principles.
Temporary and managerial staff must carry out their duties with full and exclusive dedication, their activity remaining incompatible with the exercise of any other job, post, representation, profession or commercial, professional or industrial activity, public or private, whether on their own or another’s behalf, except as follows:
1. Activities excluded from the rules on incompatibilities, provided they do not compromise the impartiality and independence of their duties.
2. Performing remunerated university teaching provided it is not to the detriment of their dedication in the exercise of their public office, is within a part-time dedication system and with a specific duration.
The individuals who, exceptionally, are granted ordinary or partial dedication will be able to make a second activity compatible with their duties in accordance with the provisions established under the legislation on compatibilities.
Article 8. Rules of conduct relating to conflicts of interest.
1. A conflict of interest exists or may exist for the purposes of this Code, where public and private interests come together in such a way that they may have a negative effect on the independent, objective, impartial and honest exercise of public duties.
A conflict of interest arises when individuals who are subject to this Code adopt decisions linked to the City Council which have a positive or negative effect on their personal financial or professional interests.
Personal interests shall be deemed as follows:
a) Own interests.
b) Family interests, including those of their spouse or the individual they live within an analogous personal relationship,
and those of family members to the fourth degree of consanguinity or to the second degree of kinship by marriage.
Individuals subject to this Code must, therefore, not allow their personal interests to come into conflict with
their public duties. It is their responsibility to prevent conflicts of interest.
c) Those of the individuals with whom they have a pending dispute.
d) Those of the individuals who have a close friendship or manifest enmity.
e) Those of the legal persons or private entities to which the individuals subject to this Code have been linked by an employment or professional relationship within two years prior to their appointment.
f) Those of the profit or non-profit legal persons or private entities to which the family relatives mentioned in letter b) are linked by an employment or professional relationship, provided it involves the exercise of managerial, advisory or administrative functions.
Decisions linked to the City Council shall be deemed as follows:
a) Endorsing a binding report, an administrative decision or an equivalent act subject to private law.
b) Intervening, by vote or submission of the corresponding proposal, in a session of the collegiate bodies where that decision is adopted.
2. For the purposes of preventing situations of conflict of interest, individuals who are subject to this Code must abide by the following rules of conduct in exercising the duties and powers they are given:
a) To refrain from taking part in any affair where it may be considered that personal interests arise that undermine the attainment of the public interests which their action motivates and guides, or where any other legally envisaged reason for abstaining or recusal arises, and to communicate that situation immediately.
As regards elected officials, they must refrain from intervening and voting in any affair where they have a personal interest and a conflict of interest may exist.
b) To abide strictly, in the matter of selecting staff and recruiting, by the applicable rules in the matter of abstaining and recusal, for the purposes of avoiding any type of conflict of interest.
To abstain from appointing staff with whom there may be a conflict of family interest.
To apply and abide by the prohibitions on hiring staff provided for under the regulations governing public sector contracts.
c) To abstain from using their position to speed up or slow down procedures or from providing a third party with a benefit in breach of the principle of equal treatment.
d) To abstain from carrying out any activity outside their municipal duties or from taking part indirectly in such an activity, which may interfere with municipal policies.
e) Not to use their institutional position or prerogatives arising from their post or job to obtain personal advantages or to benefit or harm other persons, natural or legal, that may relate to the Administration.
f) To abstain from accepting gifts or presents that exceed standard, social or courtesy practices, as well as favours or services offered under more favourable conditions that may influence the performance of their duties.
In any case, any gifts or presents, individual or grouped, worth more than 50 EUR shall be deemed beyond standard, social or courtesy practices.
Should any gifts or presents worth more than that be received, they must be returned, or, where their return is not possible or is excessively onerous, they shall have to be sent to the competent body to be incorporated into the Corporation's assets.
g) As regards trips, these must be carried out where they are crucial for the exercise of their duties or powers and by the individuals who are indispensable and directly linked to them.
Payment by third parties for travel, hotel stays and upkeep may only be accepted where the individuals subject to this Code must attend activities, having been officially invited by private or public institutions, on issues directly relating to their duties or powers.
The system for invitations to third parties for activities carried out by the City Council shall be governed as well by these rules of conduct.
h) As regards elected officials, commissioners, councillors and senior officials, they must declare any assets from any activities that provide or may provide them with financial income and any shareholdings in companies of any type on both taking and leaving office, as stipulated by the various regulations they are subject to.
These declarations shall be published in Barcelona City Council’s e-Headquarters and, in the case of senior officials, they shall be subject to Article 56 of Act 19/2014, of 29 December, on transparency, access to public information and good governance, and to the specific regulations in force, on such staff, as approved by the Catalan government.
3. For the next two years following the date of their leaving office, individuals who are subject to this Code and have held positions of executive responsibility at the City Council and at municipal bodies linked to it must abide by the following:
a) They may not provide services to private entities affected by decisions they have played a part in.
b) If, prior to taking their public office, they have carried out their activity in private companies in which they wish to reincorporate themselves, they shall not be subject to the restrictions set out in letter a) where the activity they will be carrying out is performed in jobs not directly related to the powers of the public office they occupied and provided they are unable to adopt decisions which affect it.
c) Anyone who returns to public duties with granted compatibility to provide remunerated private services shall be subject to the restrictions set out in letter a).
The Ethics Committee must draft guidelines or guides for resolving situations of conflicts of interest and establish guidelines for behaviour. These guidelines shall require approval by the Commission for Presidency.
This point shall not apply to the individuals who are subject to this Code where they have not held positions of executive responsibility.
Article 9. Reaction to irregular offers.
Where the individuals who are subject to this Code suspect that they are being offered undue advantages, they must take the following measures to protect themselves:
a) Reject the undue advantage; it does not need to be accepted to be used as evidence.
b) Try to identify the person who made the offer.
c) Avoid long-term contracts, although finding out the reason for the offer may be useful as evidence.
d) If the gift cannot be refused or returned to the sender, it must be retained but handled as little as possible.
e) Seek witnesses wherever possible, for example, colleagues working nearby.
f) Prepare a written report of the attempt as soon as possible, preferably as an official document.
g) Inform the Ethics Committee’s executive body and secretary’s office of the attempt as soon as possible.
Article 10. Rules of conduct relating to the management of staff.
Individuals who are subject to this Code must act in accordance with the following rules in exercising the duties and powers they are given:
a) To treat the public employees they deal with and the tasks they perform with due respect and dignity.
b) To guarantee and defend the honour of public employees in exercising their duties.
c) To guarantee that the relations of public employees with individuals who contact the City Council are met with mutual respect.
d) To take responsibility for their actions without blaming the public employees they deal with, without objective cause.
e) To eliminate the risk factors that bring about situations of sexual harassment or harassment on the grounds of sex or discriminatory conduct, mobbing and other risks of a psycho-social nature, and not to engage in such forms of behaviour.
f) To guarantee the activation of the corresponding action protocols once cases have been detected, which may affect the dignity and well-being of the public employees.
g) To facilitate the work-life balance without detriment to professional promotion.
h) To ensure that relations with public employees are developed during work times that enable, in terms of equal opportunities, professional development, work-life balance with staff and improved quality of life.
i) To foster the professional development of public employees by promoting, at the same time, continuous training, innovation, creativity and exchanges of knowledge.
j) To disseminate among public employees in their charge the guidelines, instructions and criteria approved for facilitating their knowledge and compliance and to ensure they diligently carry out the tasks they are assigned.
k) To adopt a proactive role in detecting and managing possible conflicts of interest where staff from the units in their charge may find themselves.
Article 11. Rules of conduct relating to the management and application of public resources.
Individuals who are subject to this Code must act in accordance with the following rules in exercising the duties and powers they are given:
a) To manage and protect resources and public assets in accordance with the principles of legality, efficiency, equity and effectiveness by facilitating supervision and accountability both internally and before city residents through face-to-face and online tools open to everyone.
b) To establish objective criteria in awarding subsidies and other public aid and to guarantee the subsequent monitoring of their performance, the aid availabilities and the justification of the funds received.
c) To guarantee payment to the City Council’s suppliers within a period of thirty days, starting from the submission of the invoice to the register.
d) To provide the maximum level of understandable details from the accounts of the City Council and its public sector.
Article 12. Rules of conduct relating to transparency and access to information.
For the purposes of guaranteeing the principle of transparency in exercising their duties and responsibilities, in
exercising their post and within the scope of their powers, individuals who are subject to this Code must adapt their behaviour to the following rules:
a) To provide full information on their actions in exercising their duties and powers, through the channels of active transparency that are implemented, in accordance with the applicable regulations.
b) To keep confidential and private the information obtained because of their position, without prejudice to the obligations that arise from the regulations on transparency.
c) Not to seek access to information that does not apply to them and not to abuse the information they have knowledge of as a result of exercising their duties or powers, and not to provide information which they know to be false or which they have reasonable cause to believe to be false.
d) The municipal government, the remaining elected members, and senior officials will make public the activities, acts and official agenda related to the public affairs entrusted to them for the purpose of publicising their lobbying register.
e) To present the number of individuals and organisations promoting or taking part in the drafting of proposed regulations.
f) To make public the identity of private sector counterparts involved in the drafting of specific administrative clauses and technical specifications of contracts.
g) To promote the creation of permanent channels of communication and information exchanges with city residents, social entities, and the media to encourage greater active participation in public administration.
h) To promote citizen access to municipal information as a necessary tool for monitoring public administration resulting from the principle of transparency by guaranteeing fast and appropriate responses to requests for access.
i) To guarantee transparency in staff selections, public procurement, subsidy awards, planning and urban-planning management and licence grants.
j) To guarantee members of the Corporation and district councillors access to information under the terms established in the applicable regulations.
k) To guarantee members of the Corporation and district councillors access to information on subsidies and contracts from the City Council and bodies that are answerable to it, in sufficient detail for carrying out the task of monitoring, under the terms established in the applicable regulations.
l) To guarantee members of the Corporation and district councillors access, along with the procurement or subsidy application, to the work or report produced as the subject matter of the contract or subsidy.
m) To promote the measures of open government.
n) To extend to commissioners, municipal councillors and temporary staff the obligations which, in the matter of publishing remunerations, compensations, substance allowances, agendas and professional careers, are envisaged for elected and senior officials under Act 19/2014, of 29 December, on transparency, access to public information and good governance.
o) Not to use expenses, under the budgetary heading of institutional publicity, for the political or personal promotion of members of the government.
Article 13. Conduct guidelines for contracts.
In contractual matters, in addition to the rules established in the previous chapter, individuals subject to this Code, in the exercise of their functions and assigned competences, must comply with the regulations governing public procurement and the following guidelines of conduct:
a) To abstain from promoting any public-procurement procedure with natural or legal persons with whom they have maintained any type of employment or professional relation within the last two years prior to their appointment and to abstain from taking part in it.
b) To abstain from having a shareholding of more than 10%, whether directly or indirectly, in companies that have some sort of agreement or contract of any nature with the City Council and municipal entities linked or answerable to it.
This restriction does not apply to members of the Corporation and district councillors without special dedication.
c) To promote the opening of public data on public procurement within the framework of transparency obligations.
d) To give support to non-profit civil-society organisations that reuse procurement data for monitoring contract awards and performances.
e) To properly plan and schedule the public requirements that need to be subject to public procurement to ensure maximum efficiency in contract design and execution control.
f) To see to the implementation of contractual procedures in accordance with the principles and procedures set out in the regulations for procurement and the rules for budget implementations.
g) To see to the use of contractual procedures that enable greater competition and publicity.
h) To prevent the splitting of contracts for the purposes of avoiding the application of the procurement procedure, which in view of the contract’s value, would be fitting.
i) To ensure that the conditions of solvency are established in a way linked and proportionate to the contract's subject matter.
j) To see that the individuals in charge of the procurement bodies establish procurement criteria with the utmost clarity and specificity and in such a way that they do not involve any restriction in the access to the procurement under equal conditions.
k) To facilitate the exercise of the individuals in question’s right of appeal, with full documentary accessibility of the administrative actions taken.
l) To apply the rules of conduct on conflicts of interest described in Article 8, which may apply on account of the subject matter.
m) To guarantee municipal groups permanent access to information on both electronic and non-electronic contracts, including related reports and documents.
Article 14. Conduct guidelines for subsidies and public aid.
As regards subsidies and public aid, in addition to the rules established in the previous chapter, individuals who are subject to this Code, in exercising the duties and powers they are given, must abide by the following conduct guidelines:
a) To guarantee that every subsidy is awarded in accordance with the principles of advertising, competition and equality or, failing that, that it concerns legally envisaged exceptions.
b) To give a restrictive interpretation to cases of direct subsidies not awarded on competitive bases, promoting, where appropriate, their incorporation into the budget as a registered subsidy.
c) To see that the valuation committee responsible for proposing the award of subsidies is of a technical nature.
d) To publicise the requirements, criteria and procedures for applying for and awarding subsidies and aid. To publicise the list of beneficiaries, broken down by sex, and the value of the aid and subsidies.
e) To establish objective criteria in awarding subsidies and other public aid and to guarantee the subsequent monitoring of their performance, the aid availabilities and the justification of the funds received.
f) To abstain from having a shareholding of more than 10%, whether directly or indirectly, in companies receiving municipal subsidies or aid.
This restriction does not apply to members of the Corporation and district councillors without special dedication.
g) To apply the rules of conduct on conflicts of interest described in Article 8, which may apply on account of the subject matter.
h) To guarantee municipal groups permanent access to applications and information on subsidies, including supporting reports and documents accrediting the correct destination of the resources awarded.
Article 15. Ethics Committee.
1. The Ethics Committee is established to promote, monitor and assess compliance with this Code.
The Ethics Committee is a collegiate consultative body receiving the necessary assistance and technical support from the City Council’s staff for carrying out its functions. Its reports and recommendations are binding.
The Ethics Committee, with equal representation, will be composed of a maximum of five professionals of recognised prestige in the field of defending public ethics, integrity and transparency, among whom there must be a minimum of two individuals from a legal background.
The individuals making up the Ethics Committee shall be nominated by the Municipal Council’s Commission for Presidency, Citizen Rights, Participation, Security and Prevention, chosen by agreement adopted at a Full Municipal Council Meeting by a qualified majority of two-thirds and appointed by the Mayor.
The term of office for the Ethics Committee’s members shall be for a period of five years, which may be renewed for a further five years following ratification at a Full Meeting of the Commission for Presidency, Citizen Rights, Participation, Security and Prevention.
2. The Ethics Committee’s members shall receive allowances for effective attendance of their sessions in accordance with municipal budgets and the corresponding regulating decree.
3. The Ethics Committee’s members shall exercise their duties with full autonomy, independence, objectivity and impartiality. They cannot receive instructions from any municipal body, authority or post.
4. The Ethics Committee’s members shall be subject to the general system of incompatibilities established by legislation.
For the purposes of evaluating possible incompatibilities and availability, individuals interested in admission to membership of the Ethics Committee are under an obligation to declare any remunerated activities they perform. Likewise, once the Ethics Committee's members have been appointed, they shall have to make a new declaration where there is a change to the activities they have already declared. Failure to comply with this condition is a ground for dismissal.
5. The Ethics Committee’s members cannot be removed from their post throughout their respective terms of office and may only be dismissed on one of the following grounds:
a) The period of time they were elected has ended.
c) Conviction, not subject to appeal, for an intentional crime.
d) Gross negligence in the exercise of their duties as assessed by an absolute majority of the Ethics Committee’s members.
e) Giving rise to a ground for incompatibility or failing to declare other remunerated activities they perform.
6. The Ethics Committee must meet with the necessary periodicity to fulfil its functions and, in any case, at least four times a year.
The Ethics Committee shall have to prepare a proposal for internal regulations that are in accordance with its legal standing and regulate the procedures for action to be approved by the Municipal Council’s Commission for Presidency.
Article 16. Ethics Committee’s functions.
1. The Ethics Committee’s functions are as follows:
a) To disseminate the Code and see to its compliance.
b) To resolve any doubts that may arise over its interpretation and application.
c) To promote measures for training and for preventing actions that go against the values of good governance, the rules and the conduct guidelines that govern the Code.
In complying with this regulatory text, the Ethics Committee must consider adapting provisions on hiring managerial staff and appointments regarding conflicts of family interest.
d) To formulate recommendations on breaches of the Code, without prejudice to the investigatory functions of the competent monitoring body, in accordance with the principles of collaboration and coordination.
e) To formulate recommendations and propose improvements in ethical management and the application of the principles of good governance.
f) To issue the reports requested of them related to the exercise of these functions. As for disciplinary proposals processed in accordance with this Code, its reports are mandatory. It shall also be mandatorily required to provide information where this Code’s interpretation relates to elected officials and senior managerial staff.
G) To carry out periodic reviews of the Code and draft proposed amendments to keep it up to date.
h) To prepare an annual report on the activity and submit it for presentation at the Municipal Council, during a full meeting or commission, following a report to the Government Commission.
2. The Ethics Committee’s members must keep secret any information they access in exercising their duties (examined facts, content of investigations and decisions adopted) and preserve the confidentiality of the personal data processed, which remains in effect even after they have ceased their position.
On joining the Ethics Committee, members must make a declaration of compliance regarding this duty to keep processed personal data secret and confidential.
Only final decisions on the procedure already communicated to the individual or individuals concerned can be published.
Article 17. Ethics Committee’s Secretary.
1. The Ethics Committee shall appoint, from among its members, one person with the functions of secretary.
2. The functions of the Ethics Committee’s Secretary are as follows:
a) To prepare the agenda of the sessions and corresponding minutes and call meetings.
b) To represent the Committee on occasions where no other member has been expressly appointed for this.
c) To appoint a speaker from among the individuals making up the Ethics Committee for preparing proposals for recommendations and reports in accordance with the order and requirements determined in the regulations governing the internal functioning system.
d) To receive communications of presumed breaches of the Code, following investigation of the forms of behaviour that may involve the breach by the competent monitoring body.
e) The other functions that are determined in the regulations governing the Ethics Committee’s internal functioning system.
3. The functions of the Ethics Committee’s Secretary are understood to be without prejudice to those falling to the City Council’s other monitoring bodies.
4. For purposes of performing their duties, the Ethics Committee’s Secretary shall have the assistance and technical support they require at their disposal.
5. The person appointed to carry out the functions of the Ethics Committee’s Secretary shall receive allowances for performing these tasks in accordance with municipal budgets and the corresponding regulating decree.
Article 18. Disciplinary system.
1. Violations of the rules of conduct provided for in Chapter 3 of this Code are serious violations under Article 78(3)(g) of Act 19/2014, of 29 December, and shall be penalised in accordance with the provisions set out in Article 81(1)(b) of this Act. The statute of limitations shall be two years.
Anyone who breaches the rules for incompatibilities or declarations may be penalised under the specific system established by the applicable legislation. Should there be a breach of the rules of conduct referred to under Article 10 of this Code on the management and application of public resources, the regulations governing accounting responsibility and, where appropriate, the specific legislation regulating this matter shall apply.
2. The applicable disciplinary proceedings are those established by the legislation on the legal framework and proceedings of public administrations, guaranteeing, in any case, the principle of contradiction and defence.
3. The competent body for commencing and resolving disciplinary proceedings against managerial and temporary staff shall be the body with jurisdiction over disciplinary matters, subject to the opinion of the Ethics Committee, which may ask municipal legal services for the reports it deems fit.
4. It is for Full Municipal Council Meetings to determine any possible accountability from elected municipal officials. In such cases, information on the accusation’s proposed penalty or dismissal must be given in advance by the body referred to under Article 89(2) of Act 19/2014, of 29 December.
First. The individuals making up the procurement, valuation and selection boards are those subject to the application of this Code’s provisions as members of these bodies and in the exercise of the duties inherent in them.
Second. The codes of conduct of municipal entities linked or answerable to the City Council must be compatible and consistent with the principles, rules of conduct and the guarantee and assessment system governing this Code and shall be required to have a favourable report from the Ethics Committee.
First. The current codes of conduct of municipal entities linked or answerable to the City Council must be adapted to the principles, rules of conduct and the guarantee and assessment system governing this Code within a period of six months from the date of this Code’s entry into force.
Second. In complying with the principles of good governance and rules relating to conflicts of interests, the municipal government must reconsider or rethink the processes for recruiting and selecting staff used since the start of its term of office, as regards individuals who have been appointed and are affected by the conflicts of interest described in Article 8 of this Code, without prejudice to the fact that unfavourable disciplinary rules shall not apply retroactively.
First. The Code must be reviewed and updated every two years following the administrative procedure envisaged for its approval.
Second. This general provision shall come into force 20 days after its date of publication in the Official Barcelona Province Gazette (BOPB).