Monday, January 09, 2006

Two heads are better than one, especially when one is sleepy and provincial

It looks like the division of competencies between Berlin and Bonn will be permanent. Negociators from the CDU and SPD and representatives of the state Nord Rhein-Westfalen have agreed to amend the 1991 legislation that returned the government to Berlin, allowing six ministries (including defense, education, and environment) to remain in Bonn. The Bonn-Berlin Resolution is part of a broader plan for federal reform to be undertaken by Merkel's coalition government. The agreement, which must still be approved by the Bundestag and Bundesrat, comes after years of discontent over the high cost of moving the capital. Centralization, however, has been a growing concern.

[ETA] More than half of government positions would remain in Bonn.

[ETA] Berliners' annoyance, complaining about the legacy of German federalism:
Insanity with method ... The reunification had brought together what belonged together, not only the Land, but also the capital. Thus it is necessary to divide that which is unified. Berlin unites, capitals divide.


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