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Roofless Tbilisi2011-10-14 16:11
Georgian officials diligently carry out the task of monetizing the country. According to the list of laws adopted in Georgia one might think that Mikheil Saakashvili's subordinates have only one thought on their mind: to sell at the highest possible price.
"The goods" get scarce while ambitions only grow. Yet, inventive economists and lawyers from parliament know where to get new offers to be sold at auctions. Among novelties in this sphere are hurriedly adopted amendments to the law on Technical Safety Control that have little to do with safety and are directed at expropriation of buildings in Tbilisi.
The mechanism of depriving owners of their homes is rather vague and complex dissuading people that it's shameless robbing. Yet, no matter how this "disease" is named, the fatality is predestined thanks to the refreshed law.
Presently, law-making specialists are interested in deserted buildings in a poor technical state and there are lots of such in Tbilisi including the historical centre of the city. The City Council (Sakrebulo) sets borders of a "reconstruction zone" and all ruins inside it will be subject to renovation. At this stage the idea of law makers looks rational and good.
Yet, reading on we see that owners of these shabby properties inside "reconstruction zones" are granted 6 months to make a construction license. The same period of time is given to land owners who for some deplorable coincidence have ruins sticking out of their land. Even if a building is solid enough but its owner wants to demolish it, a license is needed anyway. Let's hush down the price of this bureaucratic procedure.
When a license is being documented, a decision-maker, i.e. the owner shall indicate exact terms of start and completion of construction works. Theoretically, the owner of a building or land has a choice, and the law contains no limitations. Presently it's difficult to say what it will look like in real life. Those who will not want to make a construction license will be monitored by the state supervising body that will force to complete works in "reasonable terms". Only Georgian lawyers must know what "reasonable terms" mean from the legal point of view. Yet, the idea to rely on bureaucratic reasoning is somewhat disturbing.