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Our Own Special Island

Governor Pastika: Bali Needs ‘Special Province’ Status

(2/8/2013) Bali’s governor Made Mangku Pastika says that Bali basically does not need special autonomy but, instead, to be declared a “special province” (daerah istimewa).

As reported by Beritabali.com, the governor, who is currently running for re-election, said a “special province” status is required because Bali is a small island that needs a single system of administration and management covering the entire province.

Speaking on February 5, 2013, Governor Pastika defended the idea of changing Bali’s status to a “daerah istimewa” in order that the province would have the authority to enforce zoning regulations that under the current autonomy program sees each metropolitan area and regency wanting to make its own zoning rules. Under a new “daerah istimewa” regime, the right to grant building permits for hotels would reside with the province and not the regencies.

The change proposed by the Governor would remove the power to grant building permits for new hotels and new travel agents from the regencies to the provincial level.

Pastika also warned that those seeking “special autonomy” status for Bali might be sending the wrong signals to Jakarta as that status is often identified with an ultimate desire to secede from the Republic.