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Public Expenditure Control in Europe

Coordinating Audit Functions in the European Union

Edited by Milagros Garciá Crespo

This book presents a comprehensive analysis of public expenditure control in Europe and the coordination strategies available. It provides a detailed scrutiny of the various audit systems in the EU and the difficulties in building consistency or harmony between them. The book demonstrates how successful strategies should aim to strengthen the collaboration between different layers of government at the EU, national and regional levels.
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Chapter 4: Public financial control in Europe: the example of the Federal Republic of Germany

Hedda von Wedel


4. Public financial control in Europe: the example of the Federal Republic of Germany Hedda von Wedel INTRODUCTION Article 20(1) of the Constitution states that the Federal Republic of Germany is a Federal State. The main characteristic of federal states is the division of governmental functions between the central government (Federation) and the regional governments (the Länder). In the Federal Republic of Germany, Articles 30 and 70 of the Constitution lay down the division of functions between the Federal Government and the Länder. Financial responsibilities are also allocated in accordance with this division (Article 104(a) of the Constitution), as are tax revenues (Article 106 ff of the Constitution). The separation of responsibilities, expenditure and revenue between the Federal Government and the Länder also affects the budget system. Article 109(1) of the Constitution states that the Federal Government and the Länder are autonomous and independent in terms of their budgets. The establishment of the budgetary autonomy of the Federal Government and Länder also sets a limit as regards content. It aims to prevent the Federal Government or the Länder claiming financial powers to which the Constitution does not entitle them. Nevertheless the principle of budgetary autonomy does not apply without reservation. Articles 91(a), 91(b) and 104(a)(4) of the Constitution are in contrast with this basic principle.1 Despite the budgetary autonomy of both Federal Government and Länder, their budget legislation must at least agree in terms of its...

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