RIGA - Riga mayor Olegs Burovs (Honor to Serve Riga, GKR) on Wednesday had a “professional and politically pragmatic conversation” with the Finance Ministry’s representatives on Riga Satiksme municipal transport company’s issues, the Riga mayor told journalists today.
Burovs revealed this while answering question about the government coalition’s discussions on possibilities to compensate the fiscal liabilities caused by Rigas Satiksme with Riga’s budget funds.
Burovs said that he wanted to prevent the politization of Riga-Satiksme-related issues, which he admitted is a real challenge in these “extremely politicized times”. The mayor also said he did not want to criticize anyone to avoid political advertising. According to information at the Riga mayor’s disposal, the government wants to impose a double punishment on Riga City Council and charge it EUR 140 million, while the fiscal impact from Rigas Satiksme is around EUR 70 million.
Burovs indicated that the purchase of new tramcars for Riga makes up the largest part of the EUR million. Manufacturing of these vehicles has already been completed, the mayor added. In his situation, it is too easy to put the blame on the city council, but the local authority would not stage a “manifestation outside the Cabinet of Ministers”, the mayor said.
As reported, Imants Paradnieks (National Alliance) said Wednesday that the Finance Ministry should look for a way to take the EUR 72 million, which the budget’s fiscal space has lost due to Rigas Satiksme municipal transport company’s wastefulness, out of Riga’s budget. “It is unacceptable to make all Latvia to pay for the irresponsibility of Rigas Satiksme,” Paradnieks said, urging the Finance Ministry to come up with a solution.
Krsijanis Feldmanis (New Conservative Party, JKP) also told LETA that the finance minister should get down to work and find a way to transfer the fiscal impact from Rigas Satiksme back to Riga’s budget. “If this is not ensured, it will be the finance minister’s negligence and fault,” Feldmanis said.
As reported, according to EU regulations, Riga municipal public transport company Rigas Satiksme should be included in the general government sector, thus, in 2020 the fiscal space in the government budget will shrink by EUR 72 million.