Copenhagen releases 2013 budget
Mayor Frank Jensen (Socialdemkraterne) released Copenhagen’s 2013 budget at City Hall early today. The budget, which was agreed upon by a majority of the City Council made up of Socialdemkraterne (S), Socialisitisk Folkeparti (SF), Enhedslisten (E), Radikale Venstre (R) and Liberal Alliance (LA) focused on schools, children and green investments.
Renovations are planned at six schools, and the number of school hours will increase. The bump in classroom time will cost 4.1 million kroner annually.
About seven million kroner each year will go to help about 2,000 at-risk children receive a reduced-price school lunch every day.
“It is important to me that Copenhagen is not just a city for the elite,” Jensen said. “Everyone should be able to afford to live here and have a good life, so we are including funds for renovation and construction of public housing and to help at-risk children, including free club services and inexpensive school meals.”
The council also set aside 150 million kroner to fund a new European school that will help satisfy the demand for international education and keep Denmark attractive to foreign workers. The school will probably start accepting students beginning next summer
The agreement also includes a climate plan which the city claims will make Copenhagen one of the world's greenest capitals. The plan calls for large-scale energy efficiency renovations on the city’s buildings and replacing outdated street lights with new energy-efficient lighting. Over 300 million kroner has been earmarked from 2013-2016 for the climate plan. Copenhagen’s deputy mayor of health and care, Ninna Thomsen (SF), said the budget takes great strides in making Copenhagen CO2 neutral.
“I am really pleased that we have managed to take a giant leap towards making Copenhagen one of the world's greenest capitals,” said Thomsen.
The budget also aims to cut traffic on Amagerbrogade, one of the city’s busiest streets, in half. Some 75 million kroner has been allocated to improve conditions for cyclists, and 40 million more are earmarked for better conditions for wider pedestrian sidewalks and better public transportation on Amagerbrogade.