Local Authorities Insist on Connecting to Hot Water System

Interim mayor Vasile Ursu ordered organizing investigations in order to set the exact number of inhabitants of the apartment blokcs who would accept re-connection to hot water supply. The appropriate municipal services informed at the mayoralty’s operative meeting that the results of the survey might be issued on 10 May. Capital’s Local public authorities started the connection campaign of all the apartment blocks to the hot water system a few weeks ago, after the supplier – SA Termocom’s manager Dionisie Antocel said that all the heads of the Flat Owners Association (APLP) and Cooperatives (CCL) are against hot water supply, that is why Termocom registered losses of about 9 million lei last year. On Tuesday operative meeting, 2 May, the deputy head of the Communal Services Management, Petru Gontea, reported that 90% of blocks managed by municipal services benefit already of hot water. 111 blocks are not connected to this service, as the inhabitants refuse it. 51% of APLP blocks and 75% of CCL benefit of hot water. At the same time, only 53 of 2,005 department houses have hot water. According to Gontea, these are the results of a special commission, inquiring the opinion of all inhabitants of the blocks connected to hot water and which will continue its activity until 10 May. Gontea noted that till now commission’s members have heard different opinions regarding hot water, both positive and negative. In the context, Vasile Ursu said that those who reject the proposal have to address to those institutions in order to switch off their apartment, but not to create difficulties for the others. He recalled the idea regarding the possibility to decrease the hot water tariff up to 5 lei per cubic meters, if many consumers use it. The chairman of the League for protecting consumers’ rights, Roman Mihaies, noted that many persons give up for this service because of increased tariffs and its inappropriate quality. In Roman Mihaies’ opinion, local authorities should take into account the inhabitants’ opinion, and if they do not want this service, they shall not insist, as no one has the right to force somebody to purchase the good if he does not want to. Referring to inhabitants’ will to use hot water, the economic analyst, Veaceslav Ionita, mentioned that their lack of need is generated by the fact that the current price to hot water is an administrative one, unjustified economically and misbalanced. Because of this, the economic analyst highlighted, a tone of water heated in the boiler costs less than the hot water of the centralized system, which is nonsense. The hot water is an additional product, a result of cooling the power plant. He considers that prices for hot water have to be fixed only according to economic calculations and not political ones.
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