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Journal section "Territorial economy"

Debt problems of municipalities (case study Of municipal districts of the Vologda oblast)

Povarova A.I.

7 (27), 2015

Povarova A.I. Debt problems of municipalities (case study Of municipal districts of the Vologda oblast). Territorial development issues, 2015, no. 7 (27). URL: http://vtr.isert-ran.ru/article/1517?_lang=en

Abstract   |   Authors   |   References
The problem of state (municipal) debt has recently become most pressing in the economic life of Russia. Various aspects of this problem are reflected in some works of scientists and experts [1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 8, 13, 15]. Different vectors of the debt impact on the economy necessitate consideration of state (municipal) debt as an object of control and regulation. Today we can speak not just about debt management, but about debt policy, which is part of fiscal policy. However, the significant disadvantage of the sub-federal debt management is the absence of legislated purposes of borrowing and the uncertainty of limits of authority and responsibility of the government. The high level of public debt was a key feature of territorial budgetary systems functioning in 2009 – 2014. The debt problems begin to cover not only major regional budgets, but also municipal ones that have had no or minimum debt obligations. The problem of municipal debt is worsened by the inter-budgetary policy approved by higher authorities. By analogy with the Russian Government centralizing budget revenues, the regional authorities can reduce the tax rates of deductions in local budgets. So, for example, of the total volume of tax payments collected in the city of Vologda the city budget receives only 10%. In conditions of acute scarcity of financial resources the local authorities are compelled to borrow money to meet increasing obligations on provision the population with essential services. It hinders the conduct of responsible budgetary policy and the implementation of strategic investment projects. The escalation of municipal debt is accompanied by the increase in expenditures for its maintenance, which creates certain difficulties for the execution of local budgets. The article studies the state of municipal debt on the example of budgets of the cities of Vologda and Cherepovets, identifies the problems of debt management, makes the conclusion about the ineffectiveness of inter-budgetary policy in respect of the urban districts, and proposes the priority measures to reduce the debt burden on municipal budgets

Keywords

local budget, municipal district, municipal debt, inter-budgetary policy