A week-long working visit of a group of experts from the Ministry of environmental protection and regional development of Republic of Latvia, headed by director of Department of self-governments Aivaras Draudinsh, to Ukraine is completed. The results of the visit were discussed at the meeting of Latvian guests with the First deputy Minister of regional development, construction, and housing and communal services of Ukraine, Vyacheslav Negoda and manager of Project office for coordination of development and implementation of reforms (“Decentralization and local self-government reform” stream) of the National council for reforms, Olena Simonenko.
The group of Latvian experts focused its work in Ukraine on unified territorial communities of Chernigiv oblast that it visited to define the directions of practical assistance to them in their development.
Aivaras Draudinsh reported that Republic of Latvia would provide methodical support to Kipti, Parafiyivka, and Vertiyivka unified territorial communities of Chernigiv oblast in development of high-quality prospective community development plans, training of professionals in communities in accordance to the key directions of formation of investment attraction plans for development of their territories.
Besides, in September representatives of these communities visited the unified communities of Latvian Republic, particularly, Dobele region.
Parafiyivka settlement council head, Valentyna Karpenko, noted that the trip to Latvia only consolidated her belief, that the way of authority decentralization, the way of unified territorial community creation, presently followed by Ukraine, was the right way, and there were no alternatives.
“We saw, that Latvian communities, which had united, really became capable of resolving the issues of local significance at a high quality level. We saw a well-equipped school, a computerized library, a cultural centre, where different vocational development classes for kids were held every day, a sport club, and a centre for administrative services (a unique establishment, in our view). Within few minutes a person can get the requested service, while no papers are issued to this person; e-versions of all the documents are sent to the organization, requiring this or that certificate from the person. We are trying to organize such a service on the territory of our community as well, and ensure a high quality level for all services, including healthcare, cultural, and administrative ones”, Valentyna Karpenko noted. She also added that the issue of transfer of an uncompleted building to the community balance sheet was under way. The community is going to complete the construction and equip a centre for administrative services in the premises. The issue is one of the first-priority points of the prospective development plan for Parafiyivka territorial community.
Vyacheslav Negoda thanked Latvian colleagues for their assistance in establishment of unified territorial communities and noted that Ukraine appreciated such attention of Latvian Republic. He also added that in cooperation with Latvian colleagues the communities would get an opportunity to provide good examples for those who were still considering the issue of unification.
“We are aware of the fact, that it is the success stories of unified communities, that will become the most efficient factor of decision-making for those who are still waiting today. According to our information, local council heads from Chernigiv oblast, who were a bit afraid of reforms, visited Latvia as well, and after the visit their attitudes towards proposed changes became less critical. It is very important for us, because formation of successful development history of community territories depends solely on willingness and decisions of community residents, local council heads and deputies”, Vyacheslav Negoda noted.
More information on Latvian experience of local self-government reformation can be found here
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