Since the beginning of the full-scale invasion, most municipal processes in the cities have been suspended until local administrations have adapted them to the new conditions. This also applies to the cleaning of roads and streets. We decided to look into how much oblast centers spend on such services during the war, who gets the money, and how much the new realities have affected this sphere.

To do this, we have analyzed the data from the register of public payments of the State Treasury, starting from February 24. In addition to the occupied Donetsk, Luhansk and Simferopol since 2014, we did not look into the costs of Kherson, which, from the beginning of March to November 2022, was also occupied by russia.

In particular, in the list of services, we considered the payment for mechanized, manual, and sanitary cleaning; sweeping; cleaning of territories from dirt; comprehensive cleaning of the territory; cleaning of the street and road network; services for beautification; maintenance of roads and street and road network, territories, artificial structures; elimination of unauthorized dumps; cleaning of catch basins; mowing of grass; cleaning of roads and streets; sprinkling of sand and salt mixture; cleaning and shoveling of snow; related household goods, etc.

For greater clarity, we have calculated the average cleaning cost per square kilometer of space in the city or community. We also considered the data on the available population, as of January 1, 2022.

Let us immediately note that during the preparation of the study, institutions may have made new payments that are not considered in our data. So, the amounts may not be accurate.

Infographics on cost of cleaning of streets

For example, Lviv, which in February-March hosted the most displaced people, judging by the transactions, did not stop the pace of beautification. The area of responsibility for clean streets was distributed among the districts. Six district administrations conduct procurement and conclude contracts with both private organizations and municipal ones.

The services of 76 contractors since the beginning of the full-scale invasion cost Lviv UAH 312 million. For the community, with an area of 315 square kilometers and a population of more than 780,000 people (together with IDPs), it cost approximately UAH 900,000 per square or UAH 400 per person.

Among the contractors in Lviv, several are involved in criminal investigations. In particular, the director of the ALC “Road repair and construction department No.65” Lesia Maheria, according to “Nashi Groshi.Lviv,” is suspected of budget embezzling on repair of streets since the beginning of this year. And in 2018, the owner of Western Innovative Association LLC, Ihor Ziubryk, was suspected of selling low-quality sand mix to one of the district administrations.

Approximately four other contractors are subordinated to one owner, Volodymyr Voznyi. These are PE “Parkbud-Plus,” PE “Ekomisto,” SE “Park-Plus-Servis,” and PE “Parkbud.”

Another contractor LLC “Krok” belongs to Leonid Zaviiskyi — former deputy head on economic affairs of the Highway Service in Lviv Oblast, MP of the Lviv Regional Council of the 6th convocation, and ex-director of the SE “Lviv Dorservis,” a subsidiary of SJSC “Highways of Ukraine,” which is currently in a state of dissolution.

Approximately UAH 6.5 million of the total amount was paid to the group of companies “Lev,” controlled by Volodymyr and Oleh Rudnytskyi. The latter previously worked as a deputy chief of the Main Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Lviv Oblast, then as a deputy head of the Lviv Regional State Administration.

Chernivtsi, almost the same in size as Lviv, (153 sq. km), which has three times less population, spent almost UAH 90 mln during the same period. That is, approximately UAH 580,000 per 1 sq. km. Here, the full-scale war neither affected the rate of payment — transactions were conducted gradually throughout the period.

The Department of Infrastructure orders cleaning services in the city, and they are performed by Chernivtsi city municipal contracting road maintenance enterprise, ME “Mistoservis,” as well as private PE “Region-K,” PE “Megapolis 2005,” LLC “Techno-Bud-Center,” LLC “PE Blahoustrii,” PE “Sanbud-Servis,” PE “Upravdom,” LLC “Eurokommunbud,” PE “Poriadok v domi,” and individual entrepreneur Dmytro Hlynianyi. At the same time, the lion’s share — more than UAH 60 million — was paid to the municipal workers.

According to “Nashi Groshi,” one of the contractors — “Techno-Bud-Center” — is connected with the head of the Road Service in Ternopil Oblast Mykola Dovhoshyya through subcontracts and son.

Odesa, slightly larger than them (162 sq. km), which in the peace period was a city with more than a million population, has spent UAH 22 million on cleaning over the past 9 months. The provision and payment for these services were not stopped for noticeable periods.

Here, the price for one square kilometer of cleaning was four times lower — more than UAH 135,000. Services were ordered through district institutions: Kyiv, Suvoriv, and Malyniv district administrations, Burlachobalkiv village administration in the city, as well as the Center for Social Services of the City Council. They are provided by both private and municipal organizations.

In Dnipro, street maintenance is realized in a more centralized way. The order is formulated by the Department of Beautification and Infrastructure of the Dnipro City Council, which, during this year, uses the services of 7 contractors: LLC “Avtomahistral 2016,” LLC “Ekolohia-D,” LLC “BPC ‘Elitproekt’,” LLC “BG Trans Continental,” LLC “Dniproremont BT,” LLC “MD Group Company,” and LLC “Dnipro Hidro Montazh.” In 9 months, they were paid more than UAH 400 mln, which was approximately UAH one million for every square kilometer of the city which is 2.5 times larger than Lviv.

UAH 19 million was paid by LLC “Avtomahistral 2016,” which “Nashi Groshi” associate with companies that have links to the Dubinskyi entrepreneurs wanted for fraud. In particular, the company supplies materials to Budinvest Engineering LLC, whose founder Pavlo Chukhno is the director of the Prometheus Sports Club of Dubinskyi.

During the same period, Kharkiv, which is a little smaller than Dnipro, spent UAH 169 million with the help of three municipal enterprises and one private company: ME “Complex for the removal of household waste,” ME “Shliakhrembud,” ME “Complex for the operation of water reduction and storm-water sewage facilities,” and LLC “Kharkiv Ekoresurs.” The customers of services on behalf of the city are the Department of Construction and Road Facilities and the Department of Housing and Municipal Services of the Kharkiv City Council. Thus, the price of cleaning was almost UAH 170,000/sq. km.

The shelling and the offensive of Russian troops on the city affected the fact that in April and May, Kharkiv did not pay for cleaning services, but since June, it has resumed the process.

Zaporizhzhia, which has almost the same area as Kharkiv (334 sq. km), but one third less population, also conducted cleaning without pauses. The city needed almost UAH 60 million for this. That is, it is about UAH 177,000 per sq. km. The relevant services there are provided exclusively by private organizations. This amount was divided between 30 companies and individual entrepreneurs. Some of them are related to each other through former or current managers and beneficiaries.

In particular, we are talking about Eko Vik Plus LLC, whose founder Dmytro Loboda owns “Zaporizhzhia Komunalne,” “Zaporozhinzhynirinh,” Megaproject Invest, “Zaporizhzhia Blahoustrii,” and “Ekoservis Invest,” which provide the same services to Zaporizhzhia. Another company of Loboda “Zaporozhprojekt” is classified by local media as a sphere of influence of the former “underboss” of Zaporizhzhia Yevhen Anisimov, who was detained in 2013 on suspicion of extortion. At that time, the company was called “Midas Bud.”

In addition, the head of D-Brok LLC Volodymyr Lobach also manages the companies Clintaunservis and Clinexpertservis, which are also on the list of contractors.

Mykolayiv too uses services of municipal workers, but only partially. Most of the funds are spent through private organizations. Thus, of the total UAH 26.5 million for this period, ME “Obrii-DKP” received less than a million, which cleaned the unauthorized dumps. The rest of the amount was transferred to 11 private companies and individual entrepreneurs, some of which are controlled by government officials. Considering the area of the city, the cost of cleaning (without additional load after shelling) was just over UAH 100,000.

About UAH 2 million of the total amount was received by Tsentralnyi 1 LLC, which belongs to the MP of the local council Vladyslav Chaika, who represents the OPZZh. Local media also call him a business partner of Tetiana Dombrovska, who was nominated as a candidate for mayor of Mykolaiv from the Servant of the People during the last local elections. It was then that the leader of the party Kornienko allowed himself to use an offensive expression towards Dombrovska.

Kars Cleaning, which also cleans the streets, has Oleksii Kyrylchuk among the founders, who is the co-owner of LLC “Reklamnyi Mir.” His co-owner until 2020 was Anna Zamazieyeva — head of the Mykolaiv Regional Council, head of the regional party organization “SN,” which has several joint ventures with Dombrovska.

Companies also received money for cleaning throughout the whole period, with no pauses.

Vinnytsia, with an area of 113 sq. km and a population of 370,000 people, spent UAH 12 million for the same timeframe in the peace period. There, ME “Vinnytsia Road Administration” orders cleaning of streets from the local LLC “Mahistral” and it turns out that its services cost approximately UAH 100,000/sq. km.

Rear Poltava, with the deployment of Russia’s offensive, suspended payment for cleaning the city until the end of March and kept the pace down until June. It’s a little smaller than Vinnytsia and has 30% less population. The services for cleaning the streets here were divided between two private organizations with a Kharkiv residence permit.

Initially, RBC Quant LLC was responsible for cleaning, and then a direct contract without reporting to Prozorro was concluded with a related PE “Kharkivspetsbudmekhanizatsiya-7,” which was previously managed by the same person — Yaroslav Kovalchak. Both companies were associated by law enforcement officers with Vadym Kazartsev, a Kharkiv crime boss who died in 2020. In total, these two firms received almost UAH 95 million for such services, which is almost UAH 1 million per sq. km. At the same time, according to the local publication “Poltavshchyna,” half of the amount — UAH 46 million — was spent through the Treasury in one month.

Kropyvnytskyi, the same in size but with a smaller number of population, set up the process of beautification even longer — until the beginning of April. According to official data, the city spent about UAH 10 million on cleaning — that is, less than 100,000 per sq. km. Cleaning here is mainly carried out by the municipal company “Universal 2005,” which buys related goods from private traders. Moreover, third-party organizations are given separate contracts to look after parks.

Sumy, albeit slightly smaller, has approximately equal cleaning costs as Poltava. Here, payments for such services did not stop, despite the shelling and offensive of Russia. The relevant contracts are performed mainly by municipal enterprises. UAH 85 million was paid by the City Infrastructure Department to three specialized MEs. Approximately one million more transferred to a company and two individual entrepreneurs. The price of services of six organizations amounted to a little more than UAH 900,000/

In Khmelnytskyi, we managed to interpret official cleaning payments in the amount of UAH 3 million over the past 9 months. This hardly reflects the full list of services, considering the area of the city of 90 sq. km and the population of more than 270,000 people, according to the data as of the beginning of 2022. Here, the specialized Department of Municipal Infrastructure orders such works from the municipal enterprise “Tekhnahliad,” several companies, and individual entrepreneurs.

Ternopil, smaller than Khmelnytskyi both in terms of area and population, neither stopped paying for cleaning for long periods. The streets are cleaned by municipal enterprises and private companies, but most of the money here goes to private structures. Over the past 9 months, the specialized department has paid UAH 7 million to Ternopil City Road Maintenance and Construction Enterprise “Miskshliakhrembud,” and the remaining UAH 38 million — to three companies and individual entrepreneurs. The price of their services amounted to UAH 535,000 for cleaning of 1 sq. km.

One of these LLCs is Techno-Bud-Center, which provides the same services to Chernivtsi and which is associated with the head of the Ternopil Road Service Mykola Dovhoshyya. But here, this company receives more than half of the money from all the cleaning contracts.

Almost the same in size Ivano-Frankivsk, in which a little more people live, orders cleaning from several private organizations and individual entrepreneurs. Their services for 9 months, according to open data, cost UAH 13.5 million or UAH 162,000 UAH for each of 84 square kilometers.

The list includes, in particular, Zio-Sport LLC Ihor Ziubryk, who through another company provides services in Lviv and was a suspect in the sale of low-quality sand mix to one of the Lviv district administrations.

In Chernihiv, streets are looked after exclusively by municipal workers. It is smaller in size, but has a larger population; the cleaning services are provided by the employees of the ME “ATP-2528.” Since the end of February, the company has received almost UAH 70 million, so the average price was UAH 877,000 per

The same in size and population, Cherkasy, according to public data, spent four times less on cleaning. The local Department of Housing and Municipal Enterprises and Cherkasy Operational Linear Highway Administration paid approximately UAH 15 million to companies, private enterprises, and individual entrepreneurs. Some work was carried out by the municipal organization itself, but only for several tens of thousands of hryvnias. So, in general, the price of this year was about UAH 200,000 for cleaning one square kilometer.

One of the contractors — Koltech-Trans LLC — belongs to the local businessman Serhii Kolesnichenko and constantly receives orders for repair and maintenance of roads or acts as a subcontractor to the municipal enterprises. His company is also involved in several criminal proceedings, including investigation of tax evasion, misappropriation of funds in especially large amounts, etc.

In Zhytomyr, the cleaning is the responsibility of the ME “Highway Administration,” but most often as a customer. The works are performed by private organizations, and the municipal enterprise purchases materials and tools. Thus, in 9 months, individual entrepreneurs, companies, and private enterprises received almost UAH 11 million. This formed a price of UAH 165,000 per sq. km. Probably, “Highway Administration” performs some part of the cleaning, but this is not reflected as direct expenses on the public finance portal.

The list of contractors includes Trade and Industry Company Center Complect LLC, which is involved in the investigation of the police regarding the misappropriation of the budget, as well as PE “MC Production Housing Maintenance Enterprise No. 9,” owned by the MP of the local council Pavlo Hudz, and LLC “MC “PHME-5” of Andrii Kuchyk — ex-director of a municipal enterprise with a similar name and son of the MP of Zhytomyr City Council from OPZZh Vasyl Kuchyk.

Rivne, almost the same in size as Zhytomyr, cleans the streets and roads through the “Municipal Rivne Roads Administration,” which transfers funds to another municipal organization — KATP 1728, as well as to four private companies and 7 individual entrepreneurs. In total, this is approximately UAH 20 million during the full-scale invasion, or UAH 325,000 per sq. km.

As for one of the Zhytomyr contractors — Art-Bruk LLC — in 2018, criminal proceedings were opened on the fact of fictitious entrepreneurship.

During the same period, Lutsk, 1.5 smaller in size, spent more than UAH 24 million, which formed a price of UAH 580,000 for each square kilometer of the city. The works are performed by private LLC “LutskTerKomServis” and Lutsk branch of LLC “Evrokomunservis,” as well as municipal SKATP “Lutskspetskomuntrans.”

Uzhhorod, the smallest oblast center of the country, which before the full-scale war had 100,000 people less than Lutsk, spent UAH 36 million on cleaning during these 9 months. That is, the price for such services is close to that in Poltava, Chernihiv, and Sumy — UAH 910,000 per sq. km. The streets and roads are looked after exclusively by private companies that receive orders from the “Municipal Road Maintenance Enterprise” and the Department of Urban Infrastructure.

The largest in size Kyiv reflects such a number of payments in the identifiable data of the Treasury, the amount of which amounts to approximately UAH 15 million in the last 9 months. This is an unlikely figure for a city like this. Roads and streets here are taken care of by the Municipal Corporation “Kyivavtodor,” whose subordinates are the road maintenance departments assigned to the districts, as well as other specialized municipal organizations. They act as both customers and performers.

In response to our information request, Kyivavtodor noted that in 10 months of 2022, cleaning costs amounted to UAH 784.4 million. At the same time, the enterprises subordinated to the MC answered that no funds for their services were provided in the budget of 2022, others — reported on expenses up to UAH 100 million in 9 months.

In particular, ROM “Mahistral” from February 24 to November 18 spent UAH 30.4 million on manual and mechanized cleaning, ROM “Holosiivskyi district of Kyiv” spent UAH 43.2 million for the same period, and ROM “Pechersk district” — UAH 82.3 million.

So, most likely, we don’t see some transactions in the rest of the cities on the public finance portal as money for cleaning. Instead, these services can be written as salaries and other expenses. The same may apply to other cities, in particular Zhytomyr, Vinnytsia.

Most of the city’s payments are now made after the conclusion of direct contracts that were not published on Prozorro. Therefore, we could not get the exact details with the list of services.

Those oblast centers that have outsourced cleaning have “favorite” contractors, with whom contracts are concluded year after year — both according to the results of public bidding and under direct contracts. Almost all of them are connected — at least within the same city — and often have or have had problems with the law. Some are also connected to the criminal world. And these are only the results of the initial check.

On the other hand, the use of private companies’ labor promotes business development and tax revenues. Instead, municipal organizations are a kind of ballast for the city budget and need fixed maintenance costs. At the same time, they perform works independently and do not have a need for tenders, and also avoid the risks of non-fulfillment of orders from unreliable contractors.

The text was prepared within the USAID / UKaid project “Transparency and Accountability in Public Administration and Services / TAPAS.”