Mobilized citizens of the Russian Federation, who have gone to the zone of the special military operation, are entitled to both federal and regional payments. Since the beginning of partial mobilization, the authorities of the subjects of the Russian Federation have been tasked not only to ensure the drafting of reservists, but also to help them financially.
Financial Assistance of Regions
Each region has made the decision on financial support for the mobilized and their families. The amount of lump-sum financial aid that mobilized persons receive varies greatly from region to region. The largest payments to the participants of the special military operation – 300,000 rubles ($4,831.2) – were promised in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District and on Sakhalin Island.
Residents of the Bryansk, Kemerovo and Moscow Regions, as well as the Crimea and Yakutia, called up for service in the partial mobilization, will receive 200,000 rubles ($3,220.8) in a lump sum.
More often the amount promised is 100,000 rubles ($1,610.4.) The Arkhangelsk, Belgorod, Vologda, Irkutsk, Kursk, Murmansk, Omsk, Novosibirsk, and Tula regions, as well as the Republic of Adygea, Kamchatka, Krasnodar, Perm, and Krasnoyarsk Territories announced payments of this amount. In St. Petersburg, mobilized citizens would also receive a lump sum of 100,000 rubles each, while volunteers would get more – 300,000 rubles.
However, not all budgets will be able to afford such payments. In Kalmykia, as well as in the Orenburg and Saratov Regions, each of the mobilized can count on only 50,000 rubles ($805.2) lump sum payment, and in Kabardino-Balkaria it was decided to pay them 25,000 rubles ($402.6) per month.
Mordovia, Tatarstan, Chuvashia, Buryatia, Nizhny Novgorod, Penza, Ulyanovsk, Tyumen and Sverdlovsk regions had not announced regional one-time payments at the time of writing this material.
There’s no Money, but you Hang on in There!
In early October, the mobilized citizens in the Omsk Region recorded a video appeal to the regional authorities demanding to pay them at least some money, “We know that guys from other regions are paid stably.”
In response to this appeal, the governor of the Omsk Region, Alexander Burkov, stated that the regional budget has no funds for lump sum payments to the mobilized.
“The Omsk Region has a budget deficit of over 13 billion rubles ($209.35 mln). We still don't understand at what expense we should pay salaries, and this is one of the most paramount budget items,” Burkov said.
“We know that some regions, for example, in the Kemerovo Region, 200,000 rubles are paid to support the mobilized. 100,000 rubles are paid in the Krasnoyarsk Territory. The Novosibirsk Region and Altai Territory did not take such a decision given certain budget problems. It is clear that we cannot compete with Moscow, where the budget allows taking additional measures of support – monthly payments to the mobilized men in the amount of 50,000 rubles ($805.2),” said the Governor.
He promised to “do everything possible to support the mobilized” and in three days he announced regional payments in the amount of 100,000 rubles. “I consider inadmissible the inequality among the people who will defend the interests of the country in one line,” he said.
However, it seems that the source of this funding will still be federal. According to Burkov, “in order to equalize the size of payments with other regions,” he had to apply to the Russian government.
Not by Money Alone
While in some regions the government promises the mobilized residents six figures from reserve funds, in other regions, where budgets are not generous, officials are forced to improvise, offering families firewood, free public transportation and reduced utility bills.
A live ram is given to the family of each mobilized man in Tuva. A total of 90 sheep have already been given. One ram is for one mobilized family. In addition to the animals, potatoes and cabbage are distributed in some areas. Families are also given coal or firewood free of charge.
The authorities of Buryatia promised to present firewood to relatives of mobilized residents. This will be monitored in the republic's district administrations and in Ulan-Ude.
In Kurgan, mobilized residents are given salo [cured slabs of fatback, rarely pork belly] for a summons. The Kurgan network of the Horns and Hooves meat centers announced a campaign for the mobilized. For a month, from October 6th to November 13th, the mobilized men can come to any branch, show a summons and get a kilo of smoked fat “for the journey.”
In addition to the payments it was decided to give 5 kilos of fish to the relatives of those who were mobilized the Sakhalin Region. About 9 tones of fish were allocated for this purpose in the region.
Yakutsk Mayor Yevgeny Grigoriev promised to distribute food kits to the families of mobilized citizens, which will include cabbage, potatoes, carrots, onions and beets. In his video message in his Telegram channel, he stressed that the food will be distributed during October in a lump sum.
Regions to use Strongbox
In each subject of the Russian Federation local authorities independently decide what assistance, to whom and in what form to give.
In Kamchatka, it is planned to use the Peninsula Development Fund, created with funds from large fishing companies. Reserve funds will be used in the Irkutsk, Kursk and Belgorod Regions, as well as the Stavropol Territory, Kabardino-Balkarian and Karachaevo-Cherkessia republics, Khakasia, Tatarstan and Sevastopol. Governor of St. Petersburg Alexander Beglov ordered to create a reserve in the city budget. In the Krasnoyarsk Territory, money will be partially allocated from the funds planned to improve the living conditions of families with many children.
“Any funds will not be superfluous for anyone. Payments depend, of course, on the security of regional budgets, but I think most of the subjects will be able and will find money for our defenders, there is nothing more important now,” said Andrey Gurulev, a member of the State Duma Commission on the consideration of federal budget expenditures aimed at ensuring national defense, national security and law enforcement activities.
State Duma Deputies Deliberate and Decide
On September 24, a bill on a one-time payment of 300,000 rubles to the Russians subject to partial mobilization was submitted to the State Duma for consideration. The authors of the legislative initiative were CPRF deputies Nina Ostanina, Maria Drobot and Alexei Kornienko, as well as Tatiana Larionova from United Russia.
The initiators of the bill also proposed to exempt the mobilized from paying interest on mortgage and consumer loans for the period of their military service, to provide compensation of 50% of the cost of housing services and the cost of third party liability insurance, to exempt from property tax and to provide deferment to mobilized villagers, if they are the only specialists there.
Deputies also offered to support the families of the mobilized. According to their idea, pregnant wives were to get a one-time financial aid of 14,000 rubles ($225.08), and children under the age of three were to get a financial allowance.
However, the bill was never considered. On September 29th, the handful of lawmakers withdrew it without explaining the reason, citing Clause 112 B of the State Duma’s regulations.
The question about the lack of money for payments to the mobilized was addressed to Presidential Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov. “There are many development programs in the regions, and regional budgets are heavily burdened. Now there is an additional burden. Of course, some regions have, let us say, a reserve of strength and others have minimal or no reserve. So there are might be such situations, but in cooperation with the federal center all this will be solved,” he said.
We can only hope that “it will all be solved” more quickly and will be solved in general. Right now the situation in our country is such that all people are equal for the Fatherland, but some are a little bit more equal. If this issue is not resolved promptly at the federal level, the social consequences can be very unpredictable.