Andreev A. E. Supervision over the Tver province administrative bodies at the turn of XIX and XX centuries (.pdf)


The author analyzes the supervision over the Tver province administrative bodies’ activity. In theory supervision was comprehensive and had a significant impact on the work of local administration, but in fact the central bodies (the Senate, the State Council, the Committee of Ministers, the Council of Ministers) practiced control towards the provincial institutions only in cases of emergency and often after some signals from the places. The governor had the right of supervision, presided in the most important bodies of the Ministry of Internal Affairs’ system and had the right of audits of local bodies according to the ministers’ circulars. Financial supervision was carried out by the national audit system, represented by the Tver Exchequer Chamber. It is theoretically right that work is often estimated by analyzing its results. The governors’ reports were such sources of information on the work of local government for the state administration. However, some researchers proved that the reports did not always present objective information. As to interdepartmental supervision, the governor had the right to inspect police bodies; the provincial board inspected the Zemstvo institutions created by the law of 1889; the provincial board on Zemstvo and town affairs had the same right towards the Zemstvo and town self-government institutions. At the same time, the Tver governor was a chairman of 20 commissions, committees and boards and had, besides the rights of supervision, considerable duties which did not allow control of the activity of subordinated bodies and, especially, local institutions of other ministries to be exercised. Thus, though theoretically supervision over administrative bodies was comprehensive, in fact control functions were poorly implemented. The officials and provincial bodies could not observe and correct the activity of subordinated institutions fully. The highest administrative agencies, in turn, had limited opportunities to analyze the actions of provincial bodies throughout the country. Significant difference between the normatively provided control functions and their actual implementation can be considered one of the manifestations the Russian State’s crisis at the turn of the XIX and XX centuries.


Key words: administrative bodies, supervising functions, central and local government, reports of governors, Tver province.


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