Community meeting

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A community assembly is an assembly of the voting population of a community and thus a direct democratic political organ. In Switzerland it is part of the Swiss direct democratic culture . In Germany , this kind of local self-government by the citizens is rare.


In Germany, according to the Basic Law, the municipal assembly can take the place of an elected body ( Article 28, Paragraph 1, Clause 4 of the Basic Law). This assembly - designed by the legislature as an "optional provision" - decides in such a case instead of a corporate organization. Enable all citizens to all matters in this case community determined directly.

Insofar as this regulation has been used at all (that is at the legal discretion of the respective federal states), it has only been designed for very small communities. In Schleswig-Holstein, for example, a community assembly can decide in communities with up to 70 inhabitants that a community council does not need to be formed. Instead of direct municipal assembly occur in all communities as civic participation of citizens application , the citizens' initiative and the referendum .

Incidentally, a community assembly in Germany that is oriented towards local politics should under no circumstances be confused with the usually annual assembly of all members of a Catholic or Protestant church community .


Community meeting

The municipal assembly in Switzerland is a direct democratic organ in most small political municipalities . They are particularly widespread in the small and medium-sized communities in German-speaking Switzerland.

The municipal assembly is the «quasi- legislative », whereby the term «legislative» is to be used with caution at the municipal level, since there the separation of powers only follows a functional scheme of legislative and executive activities to a very limited extent.

Some cities with almost 20,000 inhabitants also have them. The Landsgemeinde - still in the small cantons of Appenzell Innerrhoden , with around 16,000 inhabitants, and Glarus , with around 40,000 inhabitants - is the “bigger sister” of the municipal assembly.

Those entitled to vote often decide in the assembly (“direct” →  direct democracy in Switzerland , whereby the right of referendum remains unaffected). You don't have to limit your decision to a simple “yes” or “no” to a template - you discuss the business presented (including the budget, the municipal administration bill, tax rate changes, building projects, land use planning, 30 km / h zones) , Church mergers), add to, amend, or reject them for revision. This direct exchange contributes to mutual understanding of different views and opinions.

A distinction is made between the citizens ' community assembly and the residents' community assembly. Anyone who has the right of residence of the respective rural or urban community is entitled to participate and vote at the citizens' community meeting ; The requirement for the residents 'community assembly is Swiss citizenship and the place of residence in the respective community, which is recorded in the residents' register. In Switzerland, it is not unusual to reside outside of one's own civil parish.

People who are not entitled to vote are allowed to attend the meeting, but they are not allowed to participate in the decisions and must go to special places (usually in the front row or on the side) so that it is easy for the tellers not to count their hand as a vote, should someone hold up their hand (unjustifiably). You are also not allowed to ask for or speak. The municipal council, on the other hand, may call in someone to advise on a business who is not entitled to vote in the municipality. It is common for community employees who are not resident in the community (and therefore entitled to vote in another community) to attend the meeting when business concerns their department.

In most cantons, the community assembly is chaired by the community president . Only in the canton of Bern is a special community meeting president elected for this task for a fixed term of office .

The tradition of community assemblies, the people's assembly at local level, is still widespread in German-speaking Switzerland today. Occasionally, solemn community meetings are referred to as "Landsgemeinden", B. 2019 in Ennetbaden and Bergdietikon .

District municipality

A comparable institution such as the rural community of the small cantons of Appenzell Innerrhoden (2016: around 16,000 inhabitants, 11,500 entitled to vote) and Glarus (around 40,000 inhabitants, 26,000 entitled to vote) exists with the district communities in the Appenzell Innerrhod districts ( Municipalities ) as well as in the Schwyz district of Schwyz .

In the canton of Appenzell Innerrhoden , in the districts (municipalities) of the Inner Land, the district municipalities take place on the Sunday after the cantonal municipality , at which the respective district captain (municipality president), the other members of the district council (municipality council) and one member each of the district court and all two take place Years, the members of the Grand Council due to the district are elected. The Outer Land ( Oberegg ), however, knows the ballot box .

In the canton of Schwyz , the district of Schwyz is the only district that still has a regional parish. The district municipality elects the district mayor, the district council, the land clerk and the district judge and decides on the bill and budget. Matters relating to the judiciary, the management of the lower secondary level as well as the water and road system are discussed in the Landsgemeinde, but decided in secret ballot at the ballot box since 1984.

Assembly of Corporations

The assemblies of the corporations function like regional parishes , for example the valley parish of the Urseren corporation or the Oberallmeind parish of the Oberallmeindkorporation Schwyz.

See also



Individual evidence

  1. Municipal assembly according to the German constitution , last accessed on February 17, 2014. This interpretation, however, contradicts the formulation of Article 28 of the Basic Law.
  2. ^ Municipal code for Schleswig-Holstein, § 54
  3. ^ Andreas Auer : Constitutional law of the Swiss cantons. Stämpfli, Bern 2016, ISBN 978-3-7272-3217-6 , p. 148 f.
  4. ^ Andreas Auer : Constitutional law of the Swiss cantons. Stämpfli, Bern 2016, ISBN 978-3-7272-3217-6 , p. 154.
  5. ^ Philippe E. Rochat: The Aargauer community assemblies. Empirical analysis of the municipal assemblies from 2013 to 2016 , study reports by the Center for Democracy Aarau, No. 14 (2019, one of the ZDA publications on:
  6. Martin Rupf: Large crowd at the Jubilee Landsgemeinde in the open air - On the occasion of the celebrations of 200 years of the Ennetbaden community, the community meeting on Postplatz was organized like a rural community. In: Badener Tagblatt . June 7, 2019.
  7. Because of the heat - the community assembly quickly becomes a rural community. In: Limmattaler Zeitung . June 27, 2019.
  8. ^ Constitution for the Federal State of Appenzell I. Rh. From the 24th winter month 1872, Art. 33 (accessed on May 11, 2019).
  9. Information from the State Chancellery of the Canton of Schwyz from November 4, 2013.