23 July 2024
Olena Shuliak: The current situation is proof that it is absolutely necessary to consolidate state supervision over the legality of decisions of municipalities
Olena Shuliak: The current situation is proof that it is absolutely necessary to consolidate state supervision over the legality of decisions of municipalities

Ukraine implemented one of the most successful reforms, decentralisation. However, today, due to large budgets, local authorities are taking liberties with unjustified purchases. In this case, an important element is the supervision of the legality of decisions of local self-government bodies.

This was stated by Olena Shuliak, MP, Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on the Organisation of State Power, Local Self-Government, Regional Development and Urban Planning.

There are large local budgets now (over 70 billion budget for Kyiv, over 22 billion budget for Dnipro), which local authorities allocate without the intervention of the central government. Land and other assets, which are also managed by the municipalities, were transferred to local self-government. The is one undeveloped point: we believe that it is absolutely necessary to establish appropriate supervision over the legality of certain decisions of local self-government bodies,” said the MP.

She emphasised that it was not meant to be an oppression of local self-government or an attack on decentralisation.

Recently, we received information from the State Regulatory Service for the first quarter of 2023, and the data confirm: 55% of all acts adopted by local authorities are carried out without regulatory authority, and 25% fail to comply with the regulatory legislation. This indicates the need for appropriate state supervision, which will — rather than veto decisions of local authorities — monitor whether a certain decision was made legally, offer appropriate advice and prevent illegal decisions,” said the MP.

According to her, the second important issue is ethics.

Today, volunteers, businesses and ordinary citizens collect funds for our victory, and local authorities spend funds on drums, vegetable cutters, traffic junctions, etc. To bring our victory closer, local and central authorities and citizens must join forces so that the funds are directed exactly where they are most needed,” the politician emphasised.

She added that several approaches to the proper distribution of municipal funds and spending supervision were being discussed at the moment.

Although we don’t want to hear that we are oppressing local self-government, we don’t want funds to be spent on things other than critical needs in wartime conditions. We are grateful to journalists and concerned citizens who speak up about this issue. I think that the Verkhovna Rada will not stand idly by and make relevant decisions,” said Olena Shuliak.

According to the MP, the idea of sending a certain percentage of revenues from local budgets to defence needs will be adopted only after appropriate consultations with the Ministry of Finance, and representatives of local authorities must join the discussion as they should clearly understand that certain purchases during a war are inappropriate.

The Verkhovna Rada is considering Draft Law No.4298, adopted in the first reading, which introduces prefecture-type local administrations and is designed to balance the interests of all stakeholders so that the lawful interests of either citizens or the authority are not violated.

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