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DABI issued permits for solar power plants construction in Zhytomyr Region

30.07.2021

Complainee: The State Architectural and Construction Inspectorate (DABI)

Complaint in brief: The Business Ombudsman Council received complaints from a company with foreign investment building solar power plants. The company planned to install five power plants in Novohrad-Volynskyi district of Zhytomyr Oblast with a total capacity of 5 mw. To do this, DABI had to issue 5 separate permits to start construction. The complainant submitted documents through “DIIA” public services portal However, they received remarks from the controlling body due to non-compliance of documents with the Ukrainian legislation. According to DABI, the company’s conclusion regarding consequences of the construction, as well as the names of facilities did not correspond to those specified in the project documentation. The company corrected all the deficiencies and re-applied to DABI. This time, the inspectorate found other arguments to deny giving permits to the company to build solar power plants. The DABI referred to the fact that the project documentation was inconsistent with the town-planning conditions and restrictions. After submitting the application for the third time, the company asked the BOC to initiate its own independent investigation.

Actions taken: The investigator examined the case file and found the complaint substantiated. In the Council's view, the DABI's actions contained signs of malpractice, as they were contrary to the good governance principle. From the very beginning the inspectorate did not provide the company with an exhaustive list of comments, and each time after the company's appeals it found new deficiencies in the documents. In particular, according to the legislation, the state construction supervisory authority must issue a construction permit within 5 working days from the date of registration of an application. In case of refusal to issue such a permit, the controlling body must explain the decision on refusal within 10 working days. Our complainant did not receive any information about the appeals consideration status after he submitted documents for the third time through the “DIIA” portal. The BOC requested the DABI to ensure a full and impartial consideration of the company's applications and to inform the complainant of their consideration results.

Result achieved: After the BOC facilitation, the DABI issued solar power plants construction permits in Zhytomyr Oblast to the company. The company thanked the BOC for assistance: “We are grateful to the Business Ombudsman Council for its constructive and prompt response to our request. At the time of applying to the BOC, the third application from our company for issuance of permits had been pending the DABI' consideration for over seven weeks without any decision. Any attempts to get a response from the DABI had been unsuccessful. We express special gratitude to the BOC’s team for effectiveness and professionalism in defending the interests of our company”. The case was closed.