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'Threatened' councils want to maintain district

30 November 2008 - Council members in districts that may be consolidated are far more critical of a revision of the district system than their colleagues in 'safe' districts and in the city council. That is the outcome of a poll among 92 council members carried out by News from Amsterdam.

Exactly half the respondents think that the number of districts should be changed in 2010, when new councils are elected. Fifteen percent think that this should be postponed until 2014 and a quarter think that more debate or research is needed before a decision can be taken. The rest want to maintain the current number of districts or have no opinion.

In the media, there have been speculations about a possible consolidation of a number of districts. De Baarsjes, Bos en Lommer, Geuzenveld, Osdorp, Oud-West, Oud-Zuid, Slotervaart, Westerpark and Zuideramstel are considered candidates. Only 38%   of the respondents from these 'threatened' districts favour a reorganisation in 2010, as opposed to 63% of the respondents from 'safe' districts and the city council.

Over half the respondents think that the number of districts should be reduced to fewer than ten. About sixty percent of respondents say that the number of district council members and the number of district aldermen can be reduced. There is less support for reducing the number of city council members (almost fifty percent) or the number of city aldermen (almost forty percent).

A majority of respondents say that more tasks should be devolved from the city to the districts. Fifty-one percent think that parts of the welfare agency should be devolved, and 56% think that home care and social welfare should be (partially) devolved.

Next week: what do respondents have to say about integration? Photo: Jeroen Mirck


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