– From September, there will be no more “golden parachutes” in Zurich
690,000 francs after voluntarily resigning from the post of district school principal? It’s passe. Now the privileges of Zurich city officials are declining.
Elected representatives of the city of Zurich will have to do without “golden parachutes” from September 1. From that day, a new regulation on severance pay will come into force. In the next step, only the resigning or decorated councilors should receive the money.
In March, the city council held a veritable joke concert: In remarkable harmony, parliamentary groups jointly dismantled the severance pays for elected officials that were perceived as “indecently high”.
The city council announced on Wednesday that the deadline for appeals and referenda on the new ordinance was June 20. This means that the “string concert” may take effect on September 1st.
Up to 440,000 francs
However, Parliament is not happy with this: even with the new regulation, 34 people will still be able to enjoy the “golden parachutes”. In the next step, the group of people will also be limited. Only members of the city council should receive severance pay.
In the future, the most likely to be elected council members aged 54 to 56, who have been in office for eight years or more. They receive 1.8 years’ salary. With the current salary of 245,983 francs, this would be 442,769 francs. The city council proposed an annual salary of 2.8, ie CHF 688,752.
For comparison: then 56-year-old SP councilor Claudia Nielsen received exactly 856,656.50 CHF in 2018 when she voluntarily resigned after eight years. The new one would be 368,975 francs, which is considerably less than half. City council members who resign voluntarily and are under eight years of office now receive nothing at all.
Until the next round of cuts, the “parachute” will be given to not only the city council, but also city officials, justices of the peace and presidents of poviat school authorities.
The SVP initiative has actually expired
With the new regulations, from September 1, the SVP initiative “No more golden parachutes for city councilors and members of the authorities” will actually become obsolete. The initiative also calls for a reduction in severance payments for resignation or for no longer electing officials. Only recently has it been formalized with over 3,000 valid signatures.
The city council has now complied with the SVP’s demands before the initiative is handed over to the people. So far, however, the party has not wanted to withdraw its proposal. He believes that people should have a say.
With the newly adopted regulation there is also a risk that cases of difficulty will be defined. They could then still get the “golden parachute” through the back door, so to speak, the SVP justified their previous commitment to the initiative.
Riots over the school president
The last time redheads were caused by an “obscenely high” severance pay in the summer of 2021, when Roberto Rodriguez (SP) voluntarily resigned as the president of the poviat school administration of Uto (and applied for a director position in “his” circle). Rodriguez received severance pay of CHF 687,131.
Due to social pressure, he eventually did not take up the position of director. But he did let the money be paid out.
Almost 7 million in 16 years
How research in this newspaper revealed that in 2006-2021 the city of Zurich paid the delegated members of the government a total of almost 6.7 million Swiss francs.
The highest recipient at that time was the senior vice president who, leaving the then welfare office of the city of Zurich, received 905,246 CHF, which corresponded to 4.8 annual salary.
Pascal Unternurer is an editor in the Politics and Economy section of Zurich. Since 2012, he mainly covers the political topics of the city and the canton of Zurich. Previously, he worked exclusively for Winterthur “Landbote” for 12 years.More information@ pu20000
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