Legal regulation of the national minorities’ status
In Orenburg region the state policy of culture, science and education development is based on the support of the nationalities, residing in the region (Art.92, p.1. point B of Orenburg region Regulations (the Basic Law) of 20.11.2000 N724/213 – OL). Ethnic and cultural actions are financed in accordance with the minimum regional budget allocations for culture, science and education. (The Regulations, Art.101, p.1) Moreover, the enterprises, institutions and organizations engaging in cultural, educational and scientific activities as well as individuals concerning themselves with professional creative activity are granted with tax incentives, which are determined by the regional legislation (Art.101, p.2 of the Regulations).
Therefore, the Regional Non-budget Culture Support and Development Fund was set up.
The basic document, regulating the national minorities’ rights in the field of local government is the Law On the local government establishment in Orenburg region. According to the Law, “the activity of the local government boards in the ethnic communities settlements must be carried out with due regard for the ethnic peculiarities and population’s opinion’’ (Art.1, p.4, the law local government establishment in Orenburg region in the law wording of 07.05.2001 N185/259 – II- OL).
The regional legislation states that one of the fundamental principles of regional administrative and territorial division is the development of ethnic culture, traditions and age-old ways of economic activity. (Art.3, point D of the Law On the town-planning activity in Orenburg region in the law wording of 26.11.1999 N 371/77 –OL) The Law On Orenburg state authority bodies and non-commercial non-governmental organizations interaction, which came in force 01.01.2002, is also of great importance. The Law determines the ways of state authority bodies and non-commercial non-governmental organizations interaction, regulates placing the social orders and grants with such organizations on the competitive basis as well as other forms of the non-commercial and non-governmental organizations support. (The preamble of the Law On Orenburg state authority bodies and non-commercial non-governmental organizations interaction of 19.11.2001 N368/344-II OL)
The principle trends of social orders are regarded as “preventing social, ethnicand religious breakdowns as well as their victims, forced migrants, refugees and persons repressed supporting” (Art.8, p.1).
The basic documents, regulating the national minorities’ rights, are executive authority by-laws used to legalize the regional programs, executive authority structures, responsible for an interaction with national minorities’ organizations. Program of the regional ethnic policy model realization in Orenburg region within 2001-2005, being logically based on the three previous programs (1994-1995, 1996-1997 and 1998-2000) is of much importance in Orenburg region. The Program is aimed at ensuring the national consensus; harmonizing ethnic and interethnic relations in the region; the subsequent development and realization of the regional ethnic policy trends; the overcome of peoples’ cultural, traditions and language estrangement; maintenance of the ethnic originality in the region; averting the danger of extremism. Moreover, harmonizing the ethnic and interethnic relations as the principal program target is connected with the solution of general economic and social problems in the region.
Though being the sequel of the previous programs, the Program in question was at some extent corrected. The principal units of the Program are: maintenance of the ethnic cultures in the region; taking measures on developing national minorities’ education; interethnic cultural cooperation; realizing the religious component of the cultures; developing mass media to satisfy popular needs and publishing activity; scientific programs support; averting the danger of extremism.
The Program determines the measures on its informational and analytical support and the duties of the administrational subdivision responsible for its putting into practice (however, the role of local government bodies is stated less precisely).
Meanwhile, the funds allocation analysis proves that unlike the program-makers intentions, the definite bias towards “the folk and cultural component” keeps to be strong. Only 18% financial resources of 3000 thousand roubles, allotted for the Program realization, defray the expenses of cultural formations, nationalities education, national minorities’ mass media and ethnic extremism counteraction. (Unit XVI, “Financial needs for the Program realization”)
Great importance is attached to the ethnological monitoring carried out in the region. The monitoring conduction, being legalized by the Administration resolutions, is fixed in the annual regional Administration Activity Plans on prognosticating the economic and social development of Orenburg region. The Administration Head resolutions provide for the regulations on both the consultative bodies and administrative structural subdivisions responsible for ethnic policy in the region as well as the resolutions on conducting the ethnicculture celebrations and other actions.