The not very coveted title of “debt-to-capital of Germany” awards by the Federal Statistical office always with some delay. Therefore, it remains to be seen whether, Darmstadt, 2018 to succeed the Triple, and the city is once again on the statistical sin of the podium. In 2016 and 2017 state Treasurer André Schellenberg (CDU) already up and was angry about the official assessment of the financial Situation of his city.

Rainer Hein

correspondent of the Rhein-Main-Zeitung in Darmstadt, Germany.

F. A. Z.

The was quite clear: The five circle-free cities with the highest Per capita debt in Germany was the Swiss Federal office of 2017 in the state of Hesse, Rhineland-Palatinate and North Rhine-Westphalia, led by the city of Darmstadt. There at the end of the debt was for a year per head at 14 .581 Euro, followed in some distance from Kaiserslautern, Germany (11.477 Euro), Mainz (11.321 Euro), Mülheim an der Ruhr (11.320 Euro) and Pirmasens (11.303 Euro). It can be done differently, showed municipalities how to Amberg, Braunschweig, Germany and Memmingen, whose Per capita debt was in a span of 1536 Euro-1657 euros. The average Per capita debt of all the cities stood at 5437 Euro.

invoice way annoys the black-green coalition

the Statement of the Federal Statistical office, annoyed the green-black coalition in Darmstadt every Time. Places about to be the city value it positively perceived: as a “city of science”, “Hessen’s gateway to the world room” or “Digital city”. Also the four times in a row, awarded the title of “Top city of the future” by “business week”, according to Lord mayor Jochen Partsch (Green party) clear indication, “that we can set the right impulses and a success story”.

In this series disturbs, of course, the Label “debt capital”. It raises the question of whether it may well be a success story on the Pump. The answer Partsch and Schellenberg self-aware, is Yes, and with intention. After the publication of the fault table in 2017, both declared that the liabilities fell on investment for the provision of public services – “and that is politically wanted”. What is blade in the first moment is negative, whether, on closer examination, for the citizens, indeed, a “good news”.

a High volume of investment in the city

Because of the high investment volume of the city like the back of their business conditions, and for the future, ability to stand for the improvement of life. Investments of the municipal energy supplier Entega AG in the wind power expansion, the housing company Bauverein AG in the conversion of formerly military used Lincoln settlement in a new urban district or the urban transport company Heag mobilo in the Expansion of Bus and tram lines. Darmstadt has summarized these three large urban daughters under the roof of the Heag Holding AG. This construct, which operates under the name of “city economy”, has just turned ten years old. On this occasion, the Heag Board of Directors had attributed to recently, that in this period of 2.6 billion euros were invested in the construction of housing, Public transport, energy supply or health care. Alone for the Expansion and modernization of the municipal hospital is supposed to flow up to the year 2021 to approximately 240 million euros. This is a growth in assets that works but usually only when liabilities are incurred.

it is against this Background should be read according to the view of the mayor and Chamberlain of the ranking list of the Federal Statistical office. Then you have come to the conclusion that “77 per cent of the said financial liabilities in the company of the city business book”. The core budget of the city have a rather low share of Per capita debt. Therefore, the statistics is also not comparable: “Other cities have been separated from municipal operations”. Darmstadt had not gone this route deliberately, in order to keep the “General interest” under democratic control. “We would offer the hospital, the Bauverein AG or the Entega the private market to purchase, would be gone by the Federal Statistical office collected debts abruptly.” Schellenberg complained in addition that the net assets would not take into account values of the urban enterprises in the statistics.