The city of Gießen has to revise its statutes on political citizen participation. The administrative court decided that, as the city itself announced. In 2015, the regional council of Central Hesse criticized the rules as too extensive and won the case in proceedings against the city before the local administrative court. The city appealed and lost again. Because: parts of the statute exceeded the constitutional framework. The statute grants citizens rights that go beyond the participation rights granted in the Hessian municipal code. In addition, the rules restrict the city council and the magistrate.

The Gießen statute is the first and only one of its kind in the whole of Hesse. The new Lord Mayor Frank-Tilo Becher was disappointed with the decision of the VGH: "With the Gießen statutes and their new rules, the citizens should be given guarantees through binding procedures that their voice has a strong weight in the political discourse and is heard . The statutes show that citizen participation in Gießen is more than an inconsequential passage in Sunday speeches," the SPD politician is quoted as saying. During the election campaign, he campaigned, among other things, for strong citizen participation. He was a member of the state parliament until his election in October He took up his new post on December 10, succeeding Dietlind Grabe-Bolz (SPD).

The city's statement also states that the far-reaching decision on climate neutrality in 2035 is based on a citizens' application.

The right to submit a citizens' application to the municipal committees under regulated conditions and the right to call for a citizens' meeting are core elements of the statute.

"These rights are now revoked."

Becher now wants the magistrate and city council to decide whether to suspend the offending paragraphs of the statute.

By the summer break, there should be an amended draft of the statutes.

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