The Duma will legalize the settlement regions

“Elegant way” elimination

In the state Duma Committee on local self-government (LSG) received amendments to the law on General principles of organisation MSU from United Russia deputies from the Moscow region Mikhail Terentyev (document is available). MP proposes to enshrine in law the possibility of combining all settlements, including rural areas, within the municipal district, urban district. At the confluence and settlement, and municipal district shall lose the status of the municipality. The decision on such a conversion take power in the region “with the consent” of local representative bodies.

The MP also proposes to change the law define “urban district”. Now it is an urban settlement which is not part of the municipal district. In the new wording “one or several United General territory of settlements which are not municipal formations”.

Moscow region authorities found a “graceful and easy way” to legalize a one-level system of LSG, which in recent years has created in several regions of Russia, including in Moscow, said the expert of Committee of civil initiatives Andrey Maksimov.


The Governor of Moscow region Andrei Vorobyov, in November last year announced plans to convert to 2016-2017, about 20 municipal districts in the urban district. According to him, the reform will allow to save budget money by reducing the number of officials.

The move provoked mass protests. Against administrative reform in November last year protested the deputies of municipal districts of the Moscow region, dissatisfied with the abolition of the Executive and representative power. Hearings on the reform of local settlements was accompanied by clashes with Asgardia.

In February in Moscow hosted the Congress of the IAS, the results of which suburban MPs asked Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and law enforcement agencies to check “numerous facts of violent abolition of the LSG bodies of municipal districts, rural and urban settlements”.

“The law does not provide for the elimination of the municipal district or converting it to an urban region, therefore the Moscow authorities have come up with a workaround: first, attach the rural settlement to urban settlement, and then it transform in the borough. And municipal district hangs in the air,” — said Maximov.

Conversion in the suburbs violates the rights of population to local self-government, consider the presidential Council on human rights (HRC). This was announced by Vladimir Putin, the Deputy Chairman of the HRC Evgeny Bobrov at the Council meeting on 8 December 2016. The head of state promised then to “work” on this issue.

However, in 2015, the Supreme court upheld the conversion of two rural settlements and GORODSKOGO settlement ozyory in the borough.

To simplify the management of

The Deputy Terentyev explained their initiative by the need to optimize the budget in the suburbs. “We together with the Governor saw that it is possible to save on the officials,” he said. Through this reform “will have a common approach on the tariff policy, the opportunity to reduce administrative barriers for business,” said the Deputy.

Under current law, the territory of Russia differentiated between the settlements, which are combined in municipal areas, and particularly large settlements have become urban districts, Maksimov explains. According to the bill any territorial unit in the country can be done city district, that is to move from a two-tier system to one-tier.

All municipal districts are trying to give the status of urban districts to abolish settlements, and to simplify management. Rural authorities can interfere with the authorities of the region to implement the urban development ideas, to let to resolve the issues associated with land that now requires the consent of the settlement, said political analyst Alexander Kynev.

Total degradation of settlements

Settlements, as practice shows, in the absence of local government beginning degrade and disappear, said the source in the Committee at MSU. According to him, the bill will lead to total degradation of the link settlement on the territory of the whole country.

“To eliminate in the densely populated Moscow region settlement link is nonsense, if we are talking about development of local government. It is not pasted in any paradigm, it’s just a subjective desire of the Governor, it’s easier for him to cope with his Affairs, and that mangles the law. He should tear it down to make it easier to build on it,” — said the source .

Against this reform protest people of different views and parties, under the blow delivered by the local government as such, on the eve of the presidential election of the Federal government such scandals are not needed, says Kanev.

“Through the back gate”

The amendments Terentyev made for the second reading of the bill to abolish direct voting of the population at the decision to change the statuses of urban and rural settlements. This project was introduced by the government in the spring of 2015, adopted in the first reading in the summer of that year, after which the Duma did not return to him.

A radical change in the territorial foundations of local self-making “through the back gate”, said the source in the Duma, while the reform of the LSG 2014 “seriously discussed” in society, he recalled.

The Chairman of the Duma Committee on MSU Alexei Didenko (LDPR) agrees that the bill could “remove the mechanism of local self-government from the public” and people will become more difficult to protect their interests. According to him, the initiative contradicts the words of the President in the message 2013 that “local authorities should be arranged so that any citizen could reach out to her hand.”

The decision to support the amendments will be adopted by members of the Committee, most of which — United Russia, in March, said Didenko. Amendments will be endorsed by the Committee, reported two people in the Duma.

How did the powers of local authorities

In December 2013 in his address to the Federal Assembly, President Putin asked for clarification on the General principles of organization of local self-government. According to him, the scope of responsibility and resources to municipalities is not balanced, “hence often confusion about authority.”

In may 2014 adopted the law on the reform of the LSG. The regions have the right to deprive local governments most of the authority in the decision of economic problems.

In the original version of the bill was supposed to cancel direct elections of mayors of major cities and deputies of city councils. The outcome was written, that the heads of municipal formations of any level can either be elected in direct elections, or appointed from among the deputies. In the first case, the head of MO can lead the administration (in the case of the city itself to become the city Manager). In the second case, the head of the MOE becomes the Chairman of the representative body.

The regional legislative Assembly had the right to divide the city into city municipalities. This was introduced two new types of municipalities: city district with intracity division (CDIA) and the inner city.

The deputies of the first level (urban and rural) are chosen in direct elections. The deputies of the second level (municipal regions and city police Department) in the elections are either elected or delegated to heads of settlements and deputies of the first level in the case of municipal districts, or only of the deputies of the first level (in the case of a municipal police Department). The scheme of election of deputies will be determined by regional law.

In February 2015, was introduced two other methods for electing the head of the municipality. The first allows the head of the municipality, elected by the Duma of the municipal formation from among its members, to head the local administration. His powers of a Deputy at the same stop. The second method allows to lead the local administration officials who were elected from among candidates presented by the competition Commission. This allowed city managers to become autocratic governors.