On December 16, about a hundred residents of Veliky Novgorod came out to a rally against the growth of tariffs for heat and water. The meeting was held near the monument to Peter I. It was organized by the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, Fair Russia and the Labor Union Party.
"They do not understand how low-income families with many children and pensioners survive," Olga Efimova, a deputy of the Novgorod Regional Duma, said at a rally. "Saying of Nikolaeva that investing is not charity was height of cynicism."
"The budget of Veliky Novgorod does not have the opportunity to finance these activities (modernization of boiler houses and water supply networks), so they began to finance them at the expense of consumers," said Valery Gaydym, a deputy of the Novgorod Regional Duma. "Enough to feed the plunderers from the housing and communal services! Everything is shifted to the shoulders of the Novgorodians. I paid 800 for my two-room apartment in 2000, and now – 6200 rubles."
Participants of the rally demanded resignation of Irina Nikolaeva, head of the housing and communal services department in the Novgorod region, Marina Soltaganova, head of the regional committee on price and tariff policy, Sergey Zolotarev, director of the Novgorod Vodokanal, and Andrey Belov, head of the Novgorodskaya heating company.
The day before, on December 15, another meeting on housing and communal services took place at the monument to Peter the Great in Veliky Novgorod. It was organized by members of the Communist Party of Russia and supporters of the unregistered Other Russia party. The authorities did not coordinate this meeting, therefore the three organizers of the action – Alexey Zagorsky, Ilya Alexandrov and Kirill Morozov – were detained by the police. They were accused of administrative violation. The court will be held on December 19.
Prices for housing and communal services in Veliky Novgorod will rise from July 1, 2018 to 9.5% by decision of city deputies. According to the calculations of the authorities, a fee for a one-room apartment will grow by 139 rubles, for a two-room apartment – by 279 rubles, for a three-room apartment – by 418 rubles.
In 2017, Novgorodskaya heating company modernized nine boiler-houses for 660 million rubles under the investment program. According to the general director of this company Yuri Malanin, if the tariffs are not raised for 2018, the money invested in modernization will have to be returned from the city treasury. The investment program also exists in Municipal Unitary Enterprise Novgorodsky Vodokanal – money is also needed to upgrade the water supply and sewerage system. The Novgorod authorities, calming down the townspeople, cite Soltsy as an example, where, after repairing the boiler houses, the payment for housing and communal services decreased several times.
Anton Morozov, photo by the author, «7x7»