The process of voluntary unification of communities gains momentum
During the first half of 2015 financial decentralization resulted in the increase of revenues of local budgets by 38%, to 44.6 billion UAH from 32.4 billion UAH (2014 level). These are the funds, which local self-government bodies (jointly with their communities) manage on their own, and which they target at territorial development projects of high priority for this or that settlement.
In order to let the increase of local self-government resources facilitate, first and foremost, their effective usage for development of respective communities and their territories, the process of voluntary unification of communities gains momentum in Ukraine. The process is targeted solely at creation of capable communities, which ensure high-quality living standards for their residents.
More than 35 future unified communities from different regions of Ukraine have already submitted respective draft decisions of local councils to oblast state administrations for conduction of analysis as to their compliance with the Constitution of Ukraine and the legislation in force. This information is provided by the Department for local self government and territorial organization of authority of the Minregion of Ukraine, based on the data of reform offices.
Almost two thirds of these communities have already received the opinions of oblast state administrations. Next steps of such communities include the final decisions on unification and submission of unified territorial community creation applications to oblast councils. Oblast councils, in their turn, must consider the applications within 30 days, and make respective decisions.
It should be reminded that 20 oblasts of Ukraine approved prospective plans of formation of capable communities, which represent project models for future unified communities. Yet, the final decision on the relevance of unification with local self-government bodies.
Earlier, Vice Prime Minister, Minister of regional development, construction and housing and communal services, Gennady Zubko said, that under effective management the competency of local self-government today could be expanded three-fold and it was expected, that the state’s share (percentage) in the general budget would decrease, while the development budget, providing the basis for local self-government, will increase.
Article 10 of The Law of Ukraine “On Voluntary Unification of Territorial Communities” provides, that the state shall conduct financial support of voluntary unification of territorial communities of villages, settlements and cities through providing funds to a unified territorial community in the form of subventions for creation of respective infrastructure in accordance to the plan of social and economical development of such territorial community. Proposals concerning provision of financial support to a unified territorial community shall be presented to the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine by the Council of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, respective oblast state administration, in accordance to the application of a local council of a unified territorial community, no later than July 15 of the year, preceding the budgetary period, for which financial support is to be provided.
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