Normally, town chamberlain rainer schmiedeknecht had to be in a good mood: the considerable financial resources are bubbling up, the town can go full steam ahead with the town hall renovation or the redesign of the market square. But schmiedeknecht spoke of "stomach ache" on monday evening at the city council meeting in the meeting room of the municipal utility company, that plague him in these days. Chamberman worries about the stability of state and municipal finances.
Normally, the system of public money works in such a way that the state should actually act countercyclically. That means: if the free economy is doing well, exercise restraint and build up reserves; if the economy is doing badly, the federal government, states and municipalities should invest. But things are different at the moment, rainer schmiedeknecht clarified: "the state is heating up the market even more." With investment programs such as the one for the town hall (for the reconstruction of which around 4.5 million euros were needed), a mass of orders was being generated that the construction industry could hardly cope with.
Michael weyh (freie wahler) also criticized the consequences of this financial policy in his budget speech. He expects that the city of new town will repeatedly come up with "moon prices" in the upcoming tenders for the renovation of the city hall is confronted: "the handicraft is nearly used to capacity." Nevertheless, both kammerer and weyh agreed that the city of neustadt should not miss out on the opportunity to receive uniquely high subsidies for construction measures. "We have to implement such programs", said schmiedeknecht.
Something has to happen in the market
What is already foreseeable: with investments worth millions in the already completed "kultur.Work.City", the city hall and the marketplace will not remain. Gerhard korn (CSU) referred to the renovation of the elementary school "an der heubischer strabe", which may be completed as early as next year, which is in the investment program with six million euros until 2021. An important project, emphasized the CSU spokesman: "another milestone in the future of our coming generations."
The spokespersons of the city council factions pressed the issue of the redesign of the market square, which is expected to cost half a million euros this year. Bernd gartner (SPD) recalls the "long search and planning phase" and indicated how, in their view, the marketplace should present itself in the future: free of stumbling blocks, safe to walk on, brighter and more pleasant. "A place where people like to spend time", said the SPD faction leader, must come out at the end. Gerhard korn agreed and called for "immediate action" the redesign must be started: "for handicapped people and seniors the market place is a terrible martyrdom." Michael weyh admitted that the long lead time until the start of the redesign of the market was no longer comprehensible to the public. No wonder, after all – weyh had looked through the archives – a public working group met for the first time almost exactly ten years ago to think about the development of the city center.
The unanimous approval of the budget by the city council continued what was already apparent last week during the preliminary discussions in the finance senate: there are currently no major disputes at the political level regarding the financial direction of the city in the coming years. Not even the significantly increased budget for personnel costs (10.1 million euros, 700,000 euros more than last year) was criticized. The increase is due on the one hand to wage cost increases under collective bargaining agreements, and on the other hand to the fact that more childcare workers had to be hired due to the rising number of children in daycare centers. In his closing remarks, mayor frank rebhan (SPD) expressed his gratitude for the way the budget was passed: "we had pleasantly open and constructive discussions."