The MPs have approved of the amendments to the law on Road Fund and the law on local public finance in line with which the money for maintenance of local roads is to be diverted to local budgets by clear and transparent criteria.
50% of the incomes generated by the road toll is to be allotted directly to Tier One local authorities and distributed among the localities depending on a size of their population. Tier Two local authorities are to have the means from the Road Fund in the amount proportional to the length of district roads expressed in conditional kilometers. For example, to maintain the local roads at a length of 3,112 conditional kilometers out of 10,721 metric kilometers the district authorities will receive about MDL 415,000.
Minister of Transport and Road Infrastructure Iurie Chicinciuc called the amendments a real revolution and a deep reform that was to ensure decentralized, depoliticized and more transparent distribution of the funds meant for road maintenance and rehabilitation. He recalled that before 2015 the funds had been distributed in line with political criteria mostly and the local authorities, as often as not, had no money to have the roads repaired. As from 2017, about 50% of the funds generated by the road toll (about MDL 385.9 million) will be transferred directly to the localities in proportion to the size of their population. Upon average, the funds allotted will amount to MDL 115,000 per 1,000 population. The lists of the roads to be repaired first will be approved by the local administrations. For example, Lozovo, the Straseni, district, where 6,500 people reside, will have about MDL 646,000 (MDL 100 per capita) for the road rehabilitation. Moreover, thanks to these funds, the local authorities will be able to raise more money from private partners, donors, and other sources.
According to Finance Minister Octavian Armasu, the money will be transferred from the State budget in special tranches and spent on repairing and maintaining roads and modernizing road infrastructure only. (InfoMarket/Business World Magazine)