Cities want substantial financial injections from the Ampel coalition

Don’t forget the cities – that’s where most of the people live! The German Association of Cities has its say with a catalog of demands to the possible traffic light coalitionists and an appeal for a limited vaccination requirement.

Erfurt – The German Association of Cities has addressed demands in the double-digit billions for climate protection, social housing and investments to the future traffic light coalition.

“We have a big investment backlog,” said the President of the City Council, Leipzig’s Lord Mayor Burkhard Jung (SPD), on Tuesday in Erfurt.

It is time to remind the future coalition members of the SPD, FDP and the Greens that 60 percent of investments in Germany are triggered by the municipalities and that climate protection cannot simply be ordered by the federal government, said Jung at the beginning of a three-day general meeting of the city council in the Thuringian state capital.

The association, which according to its own information represents around 3200 cities and municipalities with around 53 million inhabitants, also spoke out in favor of a quick statutory vaccination requirement for employees at schools, daycare centers, and in the health and care sector. “We want schools and daycare centers to remain open.” The force of the fourth corona wave must also be broken with a nationwide 2G rule in the leisure and cultural sector – including the Christmas markets.

Before the Prime Minister’s Conference and the consultation of the Bundestag on the new corona rules on Thursday, the city leaders appealed to federal politicians to extend the epidemic situation of national scope, contrary to the plans, beyond November 25th.

The future federal government demanded a financing program for municipal climate protection worth tens of billions of euros annually. For the energetic renovation of buildings alone there is a nationwide requirement of eleven billion euros this year, said Jung. “We cannot do this with our own strength.”

He also referred to trade tax losses due to the corona pandemic. In spite of the improved tax forecast, the municipalities were missing a total of around five billion euros this year and next, according to an estimate by the City Council. As in 2020, tax deficits would have to be offset.

Vice President Markus Lewe (CDU / Münster) called for the so-called regionalization funds for buses and trains to be increased from 9.0 billion euros by 1.5 billion euros from 2022. The federal government would have to contribute more to the local transport costs.

There was a demand to stop the decline in social housing. For this, the funding of one billion euros per year must be increased significantly. According to the City Council, the number of social housing in Germany fell by around 1.5 million between 2002 and 2020. It was also suggested to review the cap for rent increases. People who still live in cheap apartments below the local comparative rent, it could currently happen that their rent increases by up to 15 percent within three years. dpa

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