The Ulyanovsk City Duma has supported considerably increasing the prices of public utilities. Now, the citizens have to pay 80 percent of the price of municipal services. One of the deputies even proposed to go further and to increase the tariffs up to 90 percent of the price, though her colleagues did not supported her. The increasing of the payments does not means improving the supply of energy or hot water supply for the city. According to local authorities and energy suppliers, next winter should be even colder than this year's, while this summer, the citizens could count on hot water in their flats. At the same time, when a City Duma deputy at first proposed to settle the situation in the communal sphere and install meters in flats and just to increase communal tariffs; his colleagues showed no reaction.
People in Ulyanovsk say that price of energy is too high, though the authorities make no efforts to review it. According to the deputies, increasing the tariffs will be thought of positively in Moscow; therefore, the region could count on some help from the federal budget. Local trade unions stood strongly against increasing the tariffs, realizing the one of the poorest Russian cities is not ready for such a price leap. The citizens are mostly indignant not with the fact of the increasing prices price increasing, but the fact that this increase will not improve the situation in the communal sphere. Energy suppliers only intimidate the citizens by threatening to leave the city without heat. Currently, there is no hot water in the city, so energy suppliers can hardly compensate their financial losses, because the citizens have to use waterheaters, which causes the lights in apartments to going out. However, although angry with the price changes, the citizens have not mangaed to influence their deputies. These changes cause average Ulyanovsk citizens to review their family budgets.
Life in Ulyanovsk is becoming more and more expensive, and this does not allow Ulyanovsk citizens to increase their standard of living. It forces them to increase their limit of patience.
Sergei Nikolaev PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Vera Solovieva
Read the original in Russian: http://www.pravda.ru/main/2002/05/31/42060.html
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