“There’s a lot to come” – community billion should better help through crises

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As with the Corona crisis, local communities are once again facing enormous financial burdens – the federal government now wants to counter this further and has made a special budget of one billion euros available. Vice Chancellor Werner Kogler (Greens) and Finance Minister Magnus Brunner (ÖVP) presented a corresponding package on Monday. On the one hand, investments in schools and roads, for example, must remain possible, and on the other hand, the focus is on the expansion of renewable energy.

“We still have a lot to look forward to,” said Kogler in view of the current crises. This mainly refers to the enormous economic crisis, which was fueled not least by the Russian offensive war in Ukraine. We are now trying to take countermeasures “within the scope of our capabilities”.

The support package that has now been decided is also important for the regional economy and therefore also for the regional working population, Kogler continued.

Finance Minister Brunner argued the initiative in a similar way: there are a large number of crises to be overcome and above all high inflation, which puts the municipalities in trouble. Without state support, many communities would probably have suffered losses, so more money will flow now. The package is – also in terms of amount – comparable to the one from 2020, which was intended to help communities through the Corona crisis.

“Not infinite money available”
“With the current billion, we protect communities and support them through financial loss,” says Brunner. The billion will be used in two parts for the years 2023 and 2024. 500 million will go to municipal investments (such as road renovation, the construction of a new kindergarten, etc.), the second part will be used for energy efficiency – for example for the extension of renewable energy.

Despite everything, the federal government doesn’t have “an infinite amount of money available – you have to be honest,” Brunner clarified.

Source: Krone

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