The FDP in the Berlin House of Representatives wants more openness from authorities and easier access for citizens to official documents. To this end, the parliamentary group will introduce a draft transparency law in the parliamentary session this Thursday, said its spokesman for administrative modernization, Roman-Francesco Rogat.
“The law obliges the administration to publicly present and prove all actions,” he said. “Without hurdles, without requests, but accessible to everyone, free of charge on a central platform.” This creates comprehensive control options for all Berliners, increases the efficiency of the administration and creates impulses for economic growth.
[If you want all the latest news live on your phone, we recommend our app, which you can download here for Apple and Android devices.]
“Today, Berlin’s administrations are like an inscrutable jungle of small-scale responsibilities and regulations,” said Rogat. This makes it impossible for citizens to obtain comprehensive information about the basis of political decisions and the work of the administration.
“But this right to information is not only the basis for a public, broad-based discourse, but also the basis of our democracy.” The FDP wants to bring light into the darkness with the transparency law and make Berlin a “transparent city”.
In Berlin, there have been efforts for years to create a transparency law, as in other federal states. The SPD, the Greens and the Left had already planned to do this in the last legislative period, but did not implement it. An initiative pushed a referendum on the subject.
The new coalition agreement states: “In 2022, the coalition will introduce a transparency law based on the Hamburg model, while maintaining the high standards of the Berlin Freedom of Information Act and setting a comprehensive framework for the “Open by default” guideline for public data.” The guideline means that administrations should generally publish collected data unless there are exceptional reasons such as a reference to persons.