Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Special administrative area Mae Sot approved by cabinet

Wondering if the new municipal council of Mae Sot has been finally been elected after the upgrade of the municipality in January, I found a news article which tells that the drawing of the constituency boundaries is still not finished, and therefore the election has been delayed for 45 days a fourth time already. The delay was partially due to the provincial Election Commission having to adjust the constituencies in Tak province for the next general election first.

However, the most interesting point comes at the end of the article. It states that although the special administrative area Mae Sot has been approved by cabinet already, the municipal election has to take place now and cannot wait until the law to established this new administrative unit has been approved by parliament and set into effect.

As there was apparently no mention of this in the English language press except an article of the Public Relations Department, I almost missed that this special administrative unit is already a draft law, unlike for Ko Samui where there was still discussion on the details last month. Via another news article I could then find the actual cabinet meeting transcript. The special administrative area (องค์กรปกครองส่วนท้องถิ่นรูปแบบพิเศษ) Mae Sot was point one of the agenda of the June 22 meeting, and the main points of the forthcoming law are listed in there.

The new entity is to be named Nakhon Mae Sot (นครแม่สอด), and will be created by merging the current city municipality Mae Sot (เทศบาลนครแม่สอด) and subdistrict municipality Tha Sai Luat (เทศบาลตำบลท่าสายลวด). Though there are no details, it seems to me that similar to the special administrative areas Bangkok and Pattaya the new entity will take over parts of the provincial administration as well, as well as receiving a higher amount of the tax revenue collected in the city. The administration will consist of an elected council and mayor, as well as an advisory board. The city will not be completely independent, but still is supervised by the Ministry of Interior, who has the power to ask the mayor to clarify issues on the city performance.


Geoff Thant said...

Cheers from Mae Sot! - a question for you. I found your posting while doing a number of Google searches on this topic. I'm trying to figure out whether or not NOW, i.e. early February 2011, the law has been passed to join Mae Sot and Ta Sai Luad into this special administrative status. Wondering if it is still approved but not yet passed. Great if you could let me know - I couldn't locate your personal email on your profile page. Feel free me to write me back at I'm a researcher for a migrant worker organization in Mae Sot. Thanks in advance.

Andy said...

To my knowledge it wasn't yet discussed in parliament, maybe the draft law isn't yet finished and was only approved by cabinet in principle.

I looked around with Google, and found a news article just 2 days old, if I read it right it says that the draft law seems to be stuck at the juridical council.