The decentralization reform introduced by the Government that envisages transfer of powers and financial resources to the regions needs to be enshrined at the constitutional level in order to eliminate all threats to halt the reform process and amalgamation of communities. This was stated by Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Groysman during a meeting with the leaders of the united territorial communities of Vinnytsia region. It should be noted that the region is one of the leaders of the amalgamation – there are already formed 35 communities of 59 communities. According to Volodymyr Groysman, the experience of Vinnytsia region is one of the best in the country.
"New parks, gardens, roads, schools, and hospitals are being built in areas where people are active and want changes. Financial resources are already allocated. Now it is necessary to use them efficiently. Now we need to wrap up the process of decentralization. To protect it - including amendments to the Constitution. I will support communities to the fullest extent possible… The decentralization reform is irreversible process", the Head of Government claimed.
The Prime Minister stressed that one of the advantages of the reform is the development of small cities. Volodymyr Groysman placed a special emphasis on the fact that the budgets of development in regions encapsulate billions of hryvnias, however, the budgets of small cities are lagging behind and he claimed that he will support such cities.
Since the introduction of the reform - starting 2014 - local budgets have grown from UAH 70 billion to almost UAH 270 billion. Agricultural land with a total of 1.5 million hectares has been transferred to the communities’ ownership.
The structure of budgets and the decision-making system have also altered. As the Head of Government emphasized, the next step in the reform is to involve people in the processes of management of the resources and to influence the development. According to him, the whole map of Ukraine in 2020 should be covered by the boundaries of the consolidated communities - with new opportunities and a governance system.
In January this year, in the framework of the continuation of the reform the Cabinet of Ministers presented its vision of the further territorial structure of Ukraine. The plan foresees the establishment of 100 sustainable areas and 1600-1800 capable communities, strengthening of financial sustainability of local governments, the formation of an effective governance system, and the organization of a system of public control to avoid duplication of functions.