According to the transparency rating of 100 cities of Ukraine, the highest scores were received by Lviv (57 of 100), Kropyvnytskyi (56), Ivano-Frankivsk (54), Kyiv (52) and Mykolaiv (51,5). The lowest scores were received by Novomoskovsk (8), Myrnohrad (10), Dunaivtsi (11). The rating was done in accordance to 91 indicators in 13 spheres. In particular, finance and budgeting spheres were considered, as well as procurement, housing and communal policies, education, social services, information about the workings of local governments etc. The rating was developed by the analytics of Transparency International Ukraine and Institute for Political Education as a part of “Building Transparent Cities in Ukraine” project. Full information about the research of 100 cities is published on the web-site transparentcities.in.ua.

Access and participation is the most transparent sphere in Ukrainian cities – its transparency level is 46%. That means that in many cities public is able to attend deputy committees’ meetings without the participation of deputies. Draft decisions of city councils and agendas are published preliminary. Society is able to influence decisions on budget expenditures. Moreover, electronic inquiries or applications are possible.

The second place is occupied by the informing about the workings of local governments – almost 46% of transparency. Protocols of councils’ presidiums meetings are regularly published in many cities, as well as notices and announcements; deputies’ contacts are in public access.

The cities demonstrate 45% of transparency in human resources. This means that selection process of potential candidates for public cabinets is open, gender balance is provided for etc.

“A process of decentralization is in currently in place in Ukraine. This reform may be successful only if local governments are accountable. If not, the problems will just transfer from central level to local. In general, the rating demonstrated that there are some big problems with cities’ openness, because the leaders of the rating have barely scored 50 points from 100. In comparison to other countries, where a similar rating was already done, the results are weak. For example, leading cities of Slovakia scored more than 70 points, commented Yaroslav Yurchyshyn, the executive director of Transparency International Ukraine.

Spheres related to housing, functioning of communal enterprises and social institutions are the most closed from public. 65% of the cities did not receive any points in housing sphere. Usually, local communities know nothing about housing distribution and online-queues for rooms and houses are absent. Almost all of the cities have incomprehensible methodologies of determining of an order of priorities for repairing roofs, basements, entrance hallways and adjacent territories. In 36 cities residents are absolutely uninformed about social services. For example, people do not know what kinds of services are provided by social institutions and how much they cost for taxpayers, Information on how to get welfare or social payments from a local budget is often absent.

The openness of communal enterprises leaves something to be desired too – 11 cities of 100 received 0 points in that sphere.

“That means a closed access to information about tariffs, services and methodologies of their development; that financial reports and audits’ results are absent; that there is no information about the top-managers of enterprises. Supervisory boards are not created; external audits are not ordered”, explained Oleksandr Solontai, the chief analyst of the project. He emphasised that local communities of almost all of the cities have to work very thoroughly on openness and transparency. Otherwise, an increase in local budgets will lead to an increase in local corruption. Experts propose specific indicators and solutions for local governments to prevent new criminal schemes.

TI Ukraine and Institute for Political Education actively help implementing transparency and accountability on local level. The next step after the rating publication will be a training of journalists and representatives of society and governments from 15 cities, regarding the best practices of transparency and accountability. The team of the Project is open for contact with regional governments and is ready to help all of their representatives, provide consultations and recommendations, when they will use our instrument to increase transparency.

# Contact for media: Olha Tymchenko, Communications Department Head in Transparency International Ukraine.

Mobile phone: +38 (050) 352-96-18,

E-mail: tymchenko@ti-ukraine.org

Transparency International Ukraine is a representative of the global anti-corruption network Transparency International that works in more than 100 countries. The mission of TI Ukraine is to low the corruption level in Ukraine by facilitating transparency, accountability and righteousness of public authority and civil society. Please find more www.ti-ukraine.org