Forchheim’s financial budget: the city is in a downward spiral and shows optimism

The financial boom that the city of forchheim was on before the corona crisis has come to an end. At the beginning of april, chamberlain detlef winkler had already spoken of a "trade tax crash" in his speech on the 2020 budget spoken. "So we are now flying into the middle of the turbulence and will inevitably sink."

To what depths this "sinking flight" but there is still a lack of reliable data. Last week, finance mayor udo schonfelder (CSU) had told the FT that corona was "forcing companies to their knees" have. Above all, the catering industry has been hit, as can be seen from the many closed cellars.

"It can be in the millions", said udo schonfelder with regard to the trade tax loss. "The deferrals and reductions – this is a gratuitous hike."

These figures show how it is progressing: in the period between 17. April and 29. May, the city recorded 24 deferrals with a total volume of 108758 euros. In the finance committee meeting on wednesday, the chamber pointed out that the number of deferrals had risen to 35. The total volume is now 170,000 euros.

112 companies without a profit forecast

The deepest cut is caused by the 112 companies that have applied for a tax reduction; as a result, the city is currently short 1.1 million euros in trade tax. "And it will become more", mayor schonfelder said on wednesday.

CSU city councilor and economic experteinhold otzelberger compares the current situation to "groping in the dark". The shortfall of 1.1 million euros merely shows that there are companies in forchheim that no longer have a profit in the forecast." Now the city must wait for the figures at the end of the year. But the development over the past eight weeks suggests that "things are adding up here, and it’s not the end of the line"."

Nevertheless, otzelberger is optimistic: "I don’t yet see any concrete negative consequences for the policies of the city of forchheim." Reinhold otzelberger bases his optimism on forchheim’s economic structure. The relative independence from the automotive industry, for example, is "a plus for forchheim.

Siemens healthineers gives hope

Forchheim’s economic challenger, viktor naumann, sounds even more confident: "there may be a crisis, but in a crisis there are winners. Medical technology has not been a loser in the corona crisis so far." Because forchheim has an unusually strong employer in the city in the form of siemens healthineers, for example, naumann even hopes that forchheim could come out of the crisis without a loss in trade tax: "the companies had paid in 28.5 million by march – and we still have advance notices that go beyond that amount."

Computer tomographs for berlin

Heiko jahr, spokesman for healthineers germany, confirms the excellent situation in his industry to our newspaper: "we have the technologies that are now in demand." However, he does not want to portray healthineers "as a winner, because the orders we have now will be missing in a year’s time". At the same time, the medical equipment manufacturer currently receives "orders that do not come in normal time", says heiko jahr. For example, the state government has ordered computer tomographs in containers, and healthineers has equipped the emergency hospital in berlin. Short-time work did play a role in the company "but only in the cafeteria".

There are around 2,000 businesses liable for trade tax in the district of forchheim; around half of the companies are located on city-owned land. Certainly, concedes economic challenger naumann "a few companies will no longer exist after the crisis." But: "currently the city of forchheim has no negative impact of the fiscal policy effects." He said there were no layoffs in the rough, which was a good sign.