COSLA, the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities, is the representative voice of Scottish local government and also acts as the employers' association on behalf of 28 out of 32 Scottish Councils. With approximately 70% of legislation coming directly from the EU, it is crucial that Scottish local government is represented in the heart of Europe. Located close to the EU Institutions, the COSLA Brussels Office is situated within the ‘House of Cities, Municipalities and Regions’ alongside our European local government counterparts.
Our European work aims to ensure that the interests and rights of Scottish local government are safeguarded and advanced by EU policy and legislation. Key to our work is the ability to effectively forecast development and to actively influence policy and legislative stages at the earliest possible moment.
We advise Scottish MEPs on legislation affecting local government and support the work of the Scottish councillors who are members of the EU Committee of the Regions. COSLA is also an active member of the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) – the EU umbrella body for local government – and the European Local Authority Network. We work closely with other national associations of local government and with other Scottish public bodies based in Brussels, particularly the Scottish Government.
COSLA EU Priorities 2015
Every year the European Commission proposes a detailed work programme for the following year, comprising both legislative proposals and non-legislative proposals coming from the new Juncker Commission. Following extensive contacts with our member councils, our UK and European counterparts (as well as CEMR), COSLA’s European Priorities for 2015 were approved at the COSLA Convention in March 2015.
COSLA’s key legislative dossiers are grouped under five main policy priorities: Cohesion, Environment, Rural and Maritime Issues, Public Services and Employment and Social Issues.