The Concept for Improvement of Local Election Legislation is ready, MinRegion will send it to the Ministry of Justice for consideration in drafting the relevant bill, as well as to the specialised parliamentary committee for consideration in elaboration of the President's proposals for the Electoral Code.
This was informed by Vyacheslav Nehoda, Deputy Minister of Development of Communities and Territories of Ukraine, during the meeting of the Working Group on Improvement of Legislation on Local Election in terms of providing representation of residents in hromada councils and territorial hromadas in rayon and oblast councils.
“In this Concept, we had to offer optimal electoral systems for rayon and oblast councils, local councils of basic level and hromada heads, the most effective quantitative composition of local councils. It is important to ensure that the constitutional norm is respected in representing the interests of all hromadas in the representative bodies of the rayon and oblast level. We also wanted to find opportunities to reduce the level of total “partisation” of local representative bodies without damaging party building. All in all, we have completed the work on the Concept. After this meeting, we will introduce some more minor clarifications and submit a document to the Ministry of Justice, which has to draft a law on improvement of the legislation on local elections, as well as to the specialised parliamentary committee, which should take them into consideration when drafting the President's proposals for the Electoral Code,” Vyacheslav Nehoda said.
The Concept, in particular, contains two proposals for choosing the best electoral system for local councils. One proposal is to improve the current electoral system introduced in 2015. Another proposal is to introduce a majority vote system for local councils at all levels. That is, the councils will be formed only of those who received the majority of votes in the rayon. Both options, experts say, can be taken as a basis. But during the discussion, most participants tended to introduce a majority system for the election of deputies of all levels. The proposal for a majority vote system was also welcomed by the representatives of all-Ukrainian associations of local self-government bodies.
The Concept proposes a majoritarian system of decisive advantage for the election of city, village, settlement heads. That is, a second round of elections is possible, but only if there is a slight difference in the number of votes for the leading candidates. However, this proposal requires additional financial calculations of the costs of holding the second round of elections.
To draft the Bill on Amendments to the Law of Ukraine “On Local Elections” in terms of providing representation of citizens in the hromada council, as well as territorial hromadas – in the rayon and oblast councils, MinRegion formed a working group consisting of the representatives of the Ministry of Justice, associations of local self-government bodies, MPs, experts on electoral law. The OSCE Project Coordinator in Ukraine and the Council of Europe Office in Ukraine provided assistance and technical assistance to the working group.
More information on changes to electoral law is available in special section “Local Elections” on decentralisation.gov.ua.
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