Title Capacidad normativa de las Comunidades Autónomas y corresponsabilidad fiscal: Mito o realidad
External publication No
Means Rev. Estud. Reg.
Scope Article
Nature Científica
SJR Quartile 3
SJR Impact 0.20700
Area International
Web https://www.scopus.com/inward/record.uri?eid=2-s2.0-84976870097&partnerID=40&md5=91e8062ff5e275d06a9cf4f4e0bb0ac1
Publication date 01/01/2016
Scopus Id 2-s2.0-84976870097
Abstract The fiscal co-responsibility principle has been one of the key factors in the financing system of the Autonomous Communities of Spain. However, it is strongly determined by several political, economic and judicial-constitutional factors which, in fact, make its implementation difficult, especially in some of the Autonomous Communities. In this paper, we systematised these factors according to the three criteria: a) those that may affect the citizens' assessment of the decisions that the regional governments make in this area (the problem of visibility), b) those that, because ofthe articulation of the system, may influence decisions taken by the regional governments and c) those that may influence the decisions of these governments, as an inevitable consequence of the attribution of legislative powers (electoral costs and competition among Autonomous Communities). Moreover, to reach higher degrees of fiscal co-responsibility, the system has been developed by conferring additional regulatory power on taxes assigned to the Autonomous Communities, and this is generating serious side effects that should not be ignored. In order to properly assess the existing and future implications of fiscal co-responsibility in the financing system of the Autonomous Communities, it is essential to identify real opportunities that fiscal co-responsibility offers as well as the inadequacies that it may create. In this way, the aim of this paper is to analyse all the issues to be taken into account in decision-making in politics which leads to implement the alternative that really contributes to fiscal co-responsibility by minimizing its dysfunctions. This paper further analyses one of the main dysfunctions of fiscal co-responsibility, the territorial distribution of tax bases, which in a context of greater decentralization, may involve significant inter-regional disparities in the availability of the resources. The methodology followed in this paper begins with the analysis of the developments in the design of fiscal co-responsibility from 1996 to present and the exercise of the regulatory capacity by the Autonomous Communities. After that, we analyse some of the major obstacles that may influence the exercise of this regulatory power and fiscal co-responsibility. This is followed by an economic analysis of a descriptive nature based on budgetary information, publicly available, and published annually by the Ministry of Finance and Public Administration. Finally, these analyses are completed with the most relevant aspects of fiscal co-responsibility from a legal and constitutional approach to the principles of fiscal justice as referred to in Article 31 of the Spanish Constitution. There is no doubt that the economic reality of each region is a determining factor of the exercise of the regulatory capacity with significant tax collection purposes. In this sense, the structure of tax bases, which is determined by the economic capacity of people living in each territory, is much more significant than policy measures taken to increase tax collection. As a result, a mismatch between the current degrees of fiscal responsibility across regions occurs (same instruments with very different effectiveness) as well as political costs associated with the necessary exercise of the legislative power to ensure acceptable levels of tax resources. Furthermore, there can be no doubt that the tax effort among citizens is uneven, although this does not necessarily imply a breach of the principle of tax equity because this principle should be harmonised with the financial autonomy principal from which fiscal co-responsibility derives, unless inequality was very pronounced, in which case a possible breach of the principle of tax equality should be assessed and in the case of a significant rise in tax rates, of the non-confiscatory principle. In any case, these consequences cause perplexity and discontent among citizens and can have a significant impact on the acceptance of the tax system as a whole. This paper shows that there are some political, economic and constitutional assumptions that should not be ignored when analysing fiscal co-responsibility, since they are essential for a realistic assessment of the development opportunities offered by the current configuration of the financing System of the Autonomous Communities. In addition, advances in the development of the regional financing system in fiscal co-responsibility should be made by weighing the side effects previously mentioned that generate inequalities (de facto instruments for fiscal co-responsibility vary between regions and unequal tax effort between taxpayers with similar levels of income and wealth), that derived from the implementation of the principle of fiscal co-responsibility with the allocation of regulatory powers.
Keywords Assigned taxes; Autonomous communities; Fiscal co-responsibility; IRPF; Regional financing
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