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«Public Administration Issues» Journal,

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Research and educational journal
Published quarterly since 2007
ISSN 1999-5431
E-ISSN 2409-5095

N. Mironova 

Territorial reformations in regions: legal aspects

2008. No. 3. P. 82–105 [issue contents]

In this article an attempt is undertaken to study the federal and regional legislation which regulates the problems of territorial reformations, and related to it the problems of the formation of the local government and state administration within the subjects of the Russian federation as well. We make stress on legal collisions caused by the legislative mixture of procedures of dividing the territory of a Federation subject into municipal formations and into administrative and territorial formations. These collisions are used by some regional leaders to “create” new mechanisms of the territorial redistribution to satisfy political preferences and subjective understanding of comfortable governing in the appropriate territory and it leads to inefficiency both in municipal and state management. Particularly, there is the situation where the Russian federation subjects, using their authorities in administrative and territorial structure, simultaneously try to engage in the reorganization of municipal formations, that takes into account the population’s opinion according to the Constitution of the RF and the Federal legislation. The author, comparing the principles of “deconcentration” and “decentralization” of power, shows a distinct difference between the division of the territory of a RF subject into municipal formations and administrative and territorial units. It is of interest, that the decentralization system, being in force in modern federative Russia with its local government, by no means abolishes the possibility of deconcentration aimed at the comfortable management for any level of public authorities. This is actively used by the federal bodies, rarely – by municipal. At the same time, as a result of legislation gaps (the absence of the definition of such notions as “administrative and territorial formations” and “administrative and territorial structure”), and because of maintaining the former traditions of administration, there arises the danger of incorrect regulation of the problems of the administrative and territorial management. Thus, they create the conditions for infringing the citizens’ right for local government. According to the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation it is possible to divide the territory of a RF subject not only into municipal formations, but also into administrative and territorial units with the state power. Moreover, the borders of both of them can coincide or not. But one should not forget, that the bodies formed within them, have different competence. Of principal difference are the goals, the legal basis and the very procedure of the municipal power bodies’ formation and subdivisions of the state power of the Federation subjects. Thus, the aim of establishing the status of municipal formations in appropriate territories is the implementation of the process of the power decentralization, whereas the aim of the creation of administrative and territorial formations (units) is the power deconcentration. Different aims suggest a different order of carrying out appropriate procedures. That is why, according to the Constitution of Russia and the Federal law № 131-FL the changing of the borders of municipal formations territories is made only with taking into consideration the population’s opinion of the given territory. It is of principle importance, that now the federal legislation does not contain any conditions for the formation of territorial subdivisions or the municipal power. On the regional level there is the increasing of legal gaps of the federal level and of the imperfection of procedures in force of the territorial reorganization of the local government. Thus, for example, there are no legal mechanisms for the rising “in the open field” of new municipal formations (for example, cottage villages, whose population would like to acquire the status of a settlement, in other words, not of a populated area, but one of the types of municipal formations), for changing the status of city districts onto the status of municipal areas, and for other territorial changes as well. The absence of the legislative procedures in many Federation subjects, adequate to the modern state formation is of special concern, likewise the procedures, which set borders of the territories of municipal formations and administrative and territorial units, and arising here the problems of creation of appropriate structures for the decentralization and deconcentration of power (administration). That is, if a subdivision of the state power body is formed, then, even more so logic is the necessity of defining the territory, where it is supposed to be in force. And on the contrary, why should one create the administrative and territorial formation, if the appropriate subdivision of the state power body is not provided? The analysis of the regional legislation showed the existence of the law about the administrative and territorial structure almost in every subject of the RF. At the same time, there aren’t regional laws about the system of executive power bodies in every RF subject. There are still fewer regions, where in the adopted laws about the system of executive bodies of the state power of a RF subject, the existence of the territorial subdivisions of these bodies is provided. It is known, that the creation of such subdivisions is provided only in 16 Federation subjects of 77. The monitoring of the regional legislation related to the given problem is presented here. The situation in Krasnoyarsk, Perm and Khabarovsk territories, Moscow and Kaliningrad regions is illustrated in detail. The recommendations are given.

Citation: Mironova N. I. (2008) Territorial'nye preobrazovaniya v regione: pravovye problemy [Territorial reformations in regions: legal aspects] Public Administration Issues, 3, pp. 82-105 (in Russian)
Keywords: municipalities
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ISSN 1999-5431
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