Rada passes amendments to Budget Code – first bill from 2018 budget package
The Verkhovna Rada on Thursday passed in the second reading and as a whole the bill on amendments to the Budget Code (No. 7116), which is part of the package of bills required for the adoption of the 2018 national budget.
A total of 265 lawmakers voted for the bill with a required minimum being 226 votes, an Interfax-Ukraine correspondent reported.
"Primarily, the most controversial issues have been resolved: in particular, the provision on the transfer to the local budgets of benefits for payment of housing and utility services has been removed, and their provision from the state budget through relevant subsidies has been restored," the head of the sub-committee for budgetary policy and improvement of the Budget Code, Kostiantyn Ischeikin, said.
According to him, when finalizing the document, they decided to abandon the provision about the transfer of funds from local budgets to the national budget, and the reverse subsidy will be calculated in the draft state budget for 2018 based on the formula envisaging taking out 50% of funds from local budget, as opposed to the previously suggested 80%.
The subcommittee head noted that the bill lays the framework for the financing of the implementation of the health guarantee program, the first phase of which should start on July 1, 2018 with the provision of primary medical care.
During the voting, deputies also backed the increase in the level of assignments of the environmental tax to the state budget from 20% to 45% at the expense of the equivalent reduction of the assignments to the regional budgets and Kyiv budget. Finance Minister Oleksandr Danyliuk said this will make UAH 800 million available for holding laboratory and diagnostic, medical and preventive works, the maintenance of veterinary hospitals and veterinary laboratories.
In addition, when the document was prepared for the second reading, a provision was added about the transfer to the local budgets of part of the fee for issuing licenses to lottery companies in the amount which will be determined by the Cabinet.
It was also decided that Kyiv will receive 10% of the national budget subsidies for local budgets to fund construction, reconstruction, maintenance and repairs of public roads of local importance, streets and communal roads in populated localities, while the remaining 90% willl be distributed among local budgets depending on of the length of roads.