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Published: 2 november 2012 16:48

Lithuania’s mayors slam ideas to hand control of heating systems over to municipal authorities

Irmanto Gelūno / 15min nuotr. / Heating

The heads of Lithuania’s local authorities protest against a draft reform of the heating sector worked out by Energy Minister Arvydas Sekmokas. They claim that a takeover of heat production by the state would result in turmoil, the Lietuvos Rytas daily reports.

The heads of towns and districts that are members of the Association of Local Authorities in Lithuania have asked the central authorities to make adequate assessments before launching the reform. They also warn about the consequences that might result from certain developments.

According to the reform recently introduced by the minister, heat production and the grids shall not be held in the same hands. The proposed reform also bans local authorities from leasing district heat systems. If systems have been leased, the lease contracts should not be extended since everything in the sector shall be controlled by the state.

“All these obligations seem absurd. The state controlled the heating sector fifteen years ago. Later we had to take everything over, including debts and rundown systems,” Ričardas Malinauskas, the mayor of Druskininkai, told the daily. In his opinion, it is illogical to apply the law, which aims to change the situation in Vilnius, to the entire country.

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