In the dispute over the planned citizens’ income, the traffic light coalition and the Union are said to have agreed on a compromise. For beneficiaries, there should now be penalties from the first day in the event of misconduct.

The traffic light coalition and the Union seem to be getting closer in the dispute over the planned citizens’ allowance. As the “Bild” newspaper reports, there should be an agreement on the sanction rules. Accordingly, the SPD, Greens and FDP want to tighten them under pressure from the CDU/CSU.

It is reported from negotiating circles that sanctions can be imposed as early as the first day in the event of misconduct. That would mean that beneficiaries who, for example, do not keep job appointments, can be directly deprived of money. SPD social affairs minister Hubertus Heil actually only wanted such penalties after six months. But the Union has so far blocked citizen’s income because it doesn’t offer enough incentives to look for a job.

The traffic light coalition’s plan was to replace the Hartz IV system with citizen income by the end of the year. The law has already been passed in the Bundestag, but failed in the Bundesrat last week due to resistance from the Union. On Wednesday evening, a mediation committee from both chambers of parliament is to find a compromise, otherwise the start date for citizen income on January 1, 2023 threatens to burst. In Germany, 5.3 million people are currently dependent on social benefits.

The social association VdK has warned against tightening the regulations for the planned citizen’s income. “Instead of a bureaucracy monster, in times of crisis you need easier access to basic income – without a complex asset check,” said VdK President Verena Bentele of the Funke media group. The housing costs would first have to be paid in the actual amount, and the waiting periods would have to remain.

The Saarland Prime Minister Anke Rehlinger (SPD) has meanwhile also called on the Union to move in the dispute over the planned citizen money. “There can be clever compromises without losing sight of the goal,” Rehlinger told the editorial network Germany (RND). The Union had to decide whether it wanted to put the party permanently over the country.