Ephraim Gothe, Baustadtrat von Berlin-Mitte; fotografiert vor dem Neubau der Schiller-Bibliothek, Müllerstraße 149 aim Rathaus Wedding in Berlin-Wedding. Foto: Thilo Rückeis

In view of the state’s budget surplus, the city councilor for urban development in the Berlin district of Mitte, Ephraim Gothe (SPD), is campaigning for vacancies in the technical services in the district offices to be filled.

In an open letter to the House of Representatives and the Senate, Gothe brings up the idea of ​​a monthly allowance of 500 euros for technicians. The technical service includes engineers, architects, facility managers and other professional groups who manage the public properties in the districts or plan and implement new construction projects.

The districts have important tasks in urban development, argues Gothe – from the renovation and new construction of schools to the expansion of cycle paths and railway tracks to the planting of trees along the streets.

“I’m sure I speak on behalf of all my colleagues who are responsible for planning and building in the district offices that the implementation of these right goals stands and falls with the staffing of the technical services,” writes the SPD politician.

According to Gothe, there are currently 20 vacancies in the “Facility Management” department of the Mitte district office because “they are not competitive on the market”. “Departures to the head office, the municipal housing associations, the BIM or the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation are part of everyday life.”

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The background to Gothe’s request is a status report by the Senate Finance Administration that was published last Tuesday. This shows that the state of Berlin achieved a surplus of 2.3 billion euros in the first half of 2022.

However, when presenting the report, Wesener pointed out that he considered the good result to be “deceptive”. He referred to rising expenses in the second half of the year and falling income due to the energy crisis.