Municipal councillors demand an emergency law, De Jonge doesn’t think that’s necessary

Members of the municipal councils want the House of Representatives to amend the Coronas Emergency Act in such a way that the municipal councils can exert influence on the measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. These can be measures taken by mayors, but also by security regions.

It is contained in a response to the bill ‘Temporary measures covid-19 law’ which the Dutch Association of Council Members (NVR) has sent to the House of Representatives.

“The temporary law sets more than 8500 councillors against the law, instead of them also being the ambassadors of the various temporary measures”, writes the NVR.

Democratic deficit

The bill states that the mayor is accountable to the council for local measures in the area of public order and safety. According to the NVR, this only happens afterwards. As a result, the council is hardly in a position to adjust the mayor. “Actually, it is now being said: ‘Democracy does not come at a good time’,” says NVR chairman Belhaj in the CCeit Radio 1 Journaal.

The association wants the mayor, in consultation with the council, to decide which measures should be taken in his municipality. This would be necessary because emergency ordinances and also the emergency law touch upon human rights. If the council is given a greater role in determining measures, you also create greater support among the inhabitants, says the NVR

The NVR wonders whether the regulations promulgated on the basis of the current bill will stand up in court. Chances are that these regulations are contrary to the constitution, is stated in the letter.

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