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Global Economy

Association of cities in favor, district council against

The discussion about a connection regulation for the 9-euro ticket for local public transport (ÖPNV) continues. The Association of Towns and Municipalities supports proposals for a nationwide uniform and permanently cheap ticket. "Citizens have a great interest in being able to use buses and trains throughout Germany without a jungle of tariffs. This is also shown by the experience of the 9-euro ticket," said general manager Gerd Landsberg to the newspapers of the Funke media group. The example of Austria also shows that a 365-euro ticket is widely accepted.

This model is also being discussed as a possible successor to the 9-euro ticket, which is scheduled to run for three months and expires at the end of August. CSU boss Markus Söder spoke out in favor of the 365-euro ticket at the weekend, which should apply to all local public transport throughout Germany. But there are also other proposals on the table: the consumer centers, for example, recently proposed a 29-euro monthly ticket. The Association of German Transport Companies (VDV) spoke out in favor of a nationwide 69-euro ticket on Thursday.

"Burned a lot of government money"

But there is also headwind: The German district association rejects a general extension of the 9-euro ticket – no matter in which form. "I don't believe in proposals to extend the 9-euro ticket or follow-up models such as a 365-euro annual ticket," said district council president Reinhard Sager (CDU) to the Funke newspapers. The public sector lacked 2.5 billion euros to finance the current ticket elsewhere. "A lot of state money was burned that could have been invested more effectively in timing and equipment."

Almost everyone agrees that more money is needed to expand local transport. The head of the Landsberg Association of Cities also called on the federal government to push ahead with its efforts to improve the expansion of buses and train lines. "Unfortunately, the current funds are not enough."

Federal and state budgets decisive

Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing was pleased with the many suggestions for a possible connection ticket. "We will carefully examine and evaluate all of this, also calculate our own models and consult with the federal states. We have to take a close look at the price at which such a ticket could be offered throughout Germany," said the FDP politician of the Funke media group. The aim is to create clarity with the tariffs and to make the public transport offer as simple and attractive as possible. "In the end, of course, it has to fit into the budgets of the federal states and the federal government," Wissing made clear.

According to the environmental association Greenpeace, a possible follow-up ticket offers answers to two pressing problems: it relieves the households hit by the energy crisis noticeably and it promotes climate protection in traffic, said Greenpeace traffic expert Marissa Reiserer.

Greenpeace wants to scrap climate-damaging subsidies

According to Greenpeace surveys, the modal shift through such a ticket could reduce CO2 emissions by two to six million tons per year. Depending on the cost of the ticket, households could save several hundred euros a month. In terms of financing, Greenpeace proposes eliminating climate-damaging subsidies, such as the commuter allowance.

Until the end of August, rail travelers can use local transport throughout Germany for nine euros a month. The financing of the discounted ticket is part of the federal government's relief packages as a reaction to drastic price increases in almost all areas of life.

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