Gennady Kernes: Kharkov fails to pay its gas bills in full due to debt-ridden regional and state budgets
Payment of Kharkov gas debts to “Naftogaz of Ukraine” depends on when the city receives the funds provided by regional and state budgets, said city Mayor Gennady Kernes on March 3 conference of regional governors held by Vladimir Groisman, Deputy Prime Minister for Regional Development, Construction and Communal Services.
New Minister initiated a meeting of regional heads to address gas payment issues and to strengthen the role and efficiency of local governments.
The debt of the regions has grown considerably during the heating season. According to Gennady Kernes, major obstacle to timely payments are the non-return of city’s own funds and non-provision of funds by the State Treasury to Kharkov and regional budgets. “Give us back our own money and we will pay 103 percent. It is a matter of mutual responsibility of all levels of authority. Thermal facilities are pushed to the limit; the system operates in such a way that they cannot spend even a penny on upgrading and development, while the consumer pays for quality. Give us the opportunity to provide a quality service, and people will pay for it in time,” said the Mayor.