Gas price brake, housing benefit, nationwide local transport ticket, refugee care: the federal-state summit is about a lot of money. After an unsuccessful meeting a month ago, the pressure is on to come to an agreement.
Wednesday, November 2nd, 6:41 a.m .: The federal government has indicated that it will be accommodating to the federal states before renewed talks about the financing of relief measures. As can be seen from a draft resolution for the conference of heads of government of the federal and state governments on Wednesday, the federal government is offering more money for local public transport and for the reception and integration of refugees. At the center of the talks, however, are the federal government’s plans to lower the recent enormous rise in gas and electricity prices for citizens.
In the morning, the 16 heads of government of the federal states will discuss among themselves, in the afternoon they will meet with Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD). Both sides called for an agreement in advance. At the previous meeting in early October, the federal and state governments broke up without agreement.
FDP parliamentary group deputy Christoph Meyer emphasized: “We expect the Prime Ministers to finally give up their resistance to their share of the financing of the third relief package.” reliefs are required. “Any additional demand for funds from the federal states or local authorities is incomprehensible given the federal states’ income situation,” said Meyer of the German Press Agency.
The Hessian Prime Minister Boris Rhein (CDU) meanwhile sees the Berlin traffic light government as having an obligation. “The federal government has to move on Wednesday so that there can be an agreement,” he told the editorial network Germany (RND).
Citizens should be particularly interested in whether the federal and state governments can finally agree on a nationwide local transport ticket. Actually, there is already agreement that there should be a 49-euro ticket. But the federal states make permanently higher subsidies from the federal government a condition. As can be seen from the draft resolution, the federal government now wants to make a new offer to the states. For 2022 he wants to pay additional regionalization funds of one billion euros, from 2023 onwards they are to be increased by three percent annually.
It is questionable whether this is enough for the federal states – they had asked for 1.5 billion euros more this year. In addition, according to the ideas of the federal states, the federal government is to increase the regionalization funds in 2022 and 2023 by 1.65 billion euros each due to the increased energy prices. In any case, Chancellor Scholz was confident. The SPD politician said on Tuesday at a public dialogue in Gifhorn, Lower Saxony, that an agreement had almost been reached with the federal states on such a “Germany ticket”. “Tomorrow is the day when it should finally succeed.”
The German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) calls for a nationwide social ticket for a maximum of 29 euros per month. “The Federal Chancellor and Prime Minister urgently need to agree on how the 49-euro ticket should be financed in the future,” said DGB board member Stefan Körzell. Financing security until 2030 is important: the expansion of local public transport is only feasible with significant investments in new networks, vehicles and personnel.
Shortly before the meeting in the Chancellery, the federal government presented plans for a gas price brake. On the one hand, the state takes over the December discount with a one-off payment. In addition, the gas price for private customers is to be capped from March, if possible retrospectively to February. For 80 percent of the previous year’s consumption, the gas should cost 12 cents per kilowatt hour. If you use more, you have to pay more. Households with higher incomes should tax the state aid as a benefit in kind. The March date is too late for the countries – it is unclear whether it is enough for them that the cheap price could apply retrospectively from February.
To the Check24 electricity
Thuringia’s Prime Minister Bodo Ramelow (left) called for the gas price cap to start on January 1st. “Especially when it comes to capping energy costs, the citizens urgently need to be reliable,” he told the “Rheinische Post” and the Bonn “General-Anzeiger”. “It is our collective responsibility to limit concerns about energy poverty.”
The federal government also wants to respond to the calls from the federal states for more support in taking in the many refugees from Ukraine and via the Balkan route. It is now offering federal states and municipalities a total of 4.25 billion euros this year and next to provide for refugees.
It is still disputed how the significant expansion of housing allowances planned by the federal government is to be financed. In January, the state rent subsidy is to increase by an average of 190 euros per month and be paid to an additional 1.4 million citizens. So far, half of the housing allowance has been financed by the federal and state governments, but the states no longer want to participate.
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