The issues of housing and communal services were discussed at the meeting of the District Advisory Council for the Development of Local Self-Government.
Igor Komarov, Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoy to the Volga Federal District, described the proposals on the development of a federal target program for the modernization of utilities infrastructure and granting municipalities the right to establish municipal enterprises with the function of managing apartment buildings substantive and interesting. Ilsur Metshin, the Mayor of Kazan, chairman of the Association of the Volga Region Cities (AVC) and head of the working group “Issues of economic development and financial management of municipalities” of the District Advisory Council for the Development of Local Self-Government, addressed the meeting.
Creating comfortable living conditions is one of the key goals for the region and the city, said Igor Komarov, opening the meeting. In turn, the Mayor of Kazan said that the implementation of programs aimed at creating a comfortable urban environment continued in 2020, despite the challenges caused by the pandemic. “At the same time, the issues of modernization of outdated and construction of new facilities and systems of utilities infrastructure, attracting private investment in the housing and utilities sector are well behind the demands of the time,”- I. Metshin added.
The main challenge of municipalities is the high level of wear and tear of facilities and systems of utilities infrastructure.
Another significant problem is the underfunding of the industry – the amount of funds required for the inventory and reconstruction of utility networks, according to a preliminary estimate of the Russian Ministry of Construction, exceeds 4 trillion rubles. For example, to eliminate the general under-repair of resource supply organizations in Kazan, more than 75 billion rubles are needed – almost three annual budgets of the capital of the Republic of Tatarstan.
“It is necessary to develop and approve a federal target program for the modernization of utilities infrastructure, similar to the previously existing federal renovation program,”- the Mayor of Kazan said.
I. Metshin also focused on the issue of housing stock management. Presently, property management companies are responsible for this, and the share of municipalities in the housing stock in the whole country does not exceed 5%. At the same time, citizens often address local self-government authorities with questions.
“Considering the lack of effective levers of influence on private owners, we propose to provide citizens with an alternative and give municipalities the right to establish municipal enterprises with the function of property management for the apartment buildings,”- the Mayor said.