Social – citizens’ income plans are shaped – open height – economy

Berlin (dpa) – The government’s traffic light plans to replace Hartz IV, the so-called civic money in the coming year are becoming more and more specific.

Federal Social Minister Hubertus Heil (SPD) has provided details. The bill from his house is therefore ready and is currently being voted on in the government. Heil’s plans assume a more lenient treatment by the state of recipients of civic income than in the case of Hartz IV. How mildly and how much money should be for the needy is far from being agreed in the coalition. The FDP was holding back on Wednesday.

grace for wealth

Specifically, Heil’s plans include waiting periods for people who, after one year of unemployment, will transition to Citizenship Benefit (today’s unemployment benefit II). Existing assets should therefore be taken into account only in the first two years from the limit of EUR 60,000, for each additional person in the household, the limit increases by EUR 30,000. “It should be that people who get a new citizen’s income … don’t have to worry that their small savings or assets will be cut off,” Heil said. After two years, the protective property should amount to EUR 15,000.

keep the apartment for now

In his own words, Heil wants to “de-stress” the victims of an existential situation. For the first two years, therefore, it plans to recognize the real cost of housing for the first two years, even if it is larger and more expensive and above the level classified as “reasonable”. The pressure to quickly find a smaller apartment would disappear. A trust period of six months is also planned. In this phase, there should be no reduction in benefits in the case of the so-called shortcomings, e.g. failure to meet deadlines.

Less bureaucracy, more training

The reform also provides for a bureaucratic relief for labor offices. They should no longer deal with recall notifications when someone has received too much money. A de minimis limit of EUR 50 is planned here. There is also a strong emphasis on further training as there is a shortage of staff everywhere. Civic benefit recipients who are catching up should receive more time and a monthly ‘further training allowance’ of € 150. There are also plans for higher additional income limits for pupils, students and interns.

The big question “How much?”

One fundamental question remains unanswered: How much should citizens’ money actually be? The standard Hartz IV rate for singles is currently € 449 per month. According to Heil, September will show what a basic income could look like with wage and price data available from the Federal Statistical Office, on the basis of which rates are updated annually.

Social associations have been calling for more significant pay rises for a long time. Heil is also in favor of new calculation methods to keep gains from lagging behind inflation, he said Wednesday. He confirmed his desired size by about 40 to 50 euros a month more.

Headwind from the coalition partner FDP

Here, however, the negotiations with the FDP will still be difficult. Party leader and federal finance minister Christian Lindner said on Wednesday at “ntv.de” https://www.sueddeutsche.de/wirtschaft/ Increase your opportunities for additional income. Citizens’ income cannot become an unconditional basic income ”. The FDP also rejected the debate on other calculation methods. Instead, it insists on lowering benefits if beneficiaries do not accept job or training offers or miss meetings.

Unity at the End of Hartz IV

In principle, however, the signal pages agree: after 18 years, the Hartz IV should go down in history. Named after a commission chaired by former VW manager Peter Hartz. Due to the very high unemployment rates at that time, she prepared proposals for labor market and social reforms for the government of Chancellor Gerhard Schröder (SPD). The effect was, among others greater pressure on the unemployed able to work.

For the SPD, the reform is still a kind of trauma. Then came the protests, and then the unification of the PDS, which was largely anchored in the East, with the Alternative Work and Social Justice (WASG) to form the Left Party. The Social Democrats have already decided to abandon Hartz IV at a party conference in 2019. In the grand coalition, however, Heil had no chance as labor minister.

© dpa-infocom, dpa: 220720-99-84511 / 3

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