Bulgarians in Dark about Central, Local Administration - PollSociety | July 15, 2012, Sunday // 14:01| views
From all options of communicating with the administration, Bulgarians still see as number one the face to face interaction. File photo
The large majority of Bulgarians is either in the dark or not satisfied with the information they have about the work of the central and local administration.
This is one of the main conclusions from a poll, conducted by sociologist Zhivko Georgiev, among Bulgarians ages 18 - 65, living in the cities.
The poll was commissioned by Bulgarian MEP Ivaylo Kalfin, who is the main rapporteur on a proposal to draft an EU Directive stipulating that all public information except classified information and personal data should be available online.
Only 7% of the respondents are satisfied with the information on the central administration and 14% - on the local one. Georgiev says this informational blackout hurdles the work of public administration in the country and maintains the perception that this work is sloppy.
On a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 means completely unsatisfied and 5 fully satisfied, the average score for the central administration is 2.4 and for the local one – 2.6.
From all options of communicating with the administration, Bulgarians (71%) still see as number one the face to face interaction. 33% prefer or would use the internet as a good alternative; 11% - the phone and 6% - classical mail sent in the post.
When citizens are only seeking information, then 42% favor finding it themselves online, while 35% prefer the classic method of asking questions and receiving answers.
50% of all respondents believe that all information (except personal data and the classified one) must be public and on the internet; 35% also want free public information, but with a special procedure to access it; 8% are of the opinion that this information is only needed in the work of the administration, and citizens and the business should not be able to access it.
When asked what they think of Kalfin's initiative, 73% want the information to be free of charge because it is been collected and stored with taxpayers money; 11% say they agree the information must be overall free, but some services, such as the cadaster, must require a fee in order to maintain good quality. Another 10% want have in place some small fees to cover expenses, while only 2% back the idea of increasing taxes slightly, but eliminate fees collected by the administration.
The poll further reveals that if the MEP's initiative materializes, the main areas of interest will be data from labor contacts, work benefits, comparing prices and quality of different goods, data about air pollution, salaries, bonuses of State servants, expenses of State institutions, real estate and crime data.
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