“Democracy and Community: A Powerful Bond for a Thriving Society”

by | Jan 21, 2024 | German Daily Digest | 0 comments

Gengenbach Welcomes Over 300 Guests at New Year’s Reception

Bürgermeister Thorsten Erny of Gengenbach greeted more than 300 guests at the Kinzigtalhalle on Friday, January 12th. The attendees included representatives from the local council, authorities, and institutions, as well as church and business leaders. Among the guests were also the mayors of Ohlsbach and Berghaupten, along with other esteemed individuals. In addition to the invited guests, Bürgermeister Erny randomly selected 50 residents of Gengenbach and invited them along with a companion to the New Year’s reception. The response to these invitations was overwhelmingly positive.

Gengenbach New Year's Reception

Emphasizing Democracy and Unity

In his speech, Bürgermeister Erny highlighted the importance of democracy and its values. He urged the community to stand against extremist parties by actively participating in the upcoming European parliamentary and local elections. Furthermore, he emphasized the need to support democratically elected council members who strive for the well-being of Gengenbach and its citizens as a whole.

“Das Leben gehört dem Lebendigen an, und wer lebt, muss auf Wandel gefasst sein.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Bürgermeister Erny commenced his address by quoting Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, reflecting on current global events and their impact on the personal situations of individuals in Gengenbach. He stressed the significance of democracy and called on the community to recognize its values and actively support them. The mayor encouraged residents to exercise their democratic rights and responsibilities while engaging with local politics.

Reflecting on Achievements and Future Prospects

During his speech, Bürgermeister Erny reviewed the progress made in Gengenbach over the past year. He highlighted the development of the Hukla area, emphasizing the creation of attractive housing and employment opportunities. The mayor expressed optimism for the future, citing the Kinzigpark’s contribution of 700 new jobs and the thriving tourism industry, which offers a broad range of accommodations and restaurants for visitors. Additionally, Erny emphasized the growing importance of the healthcare sector in Gengenbach.

Investments in Infrastructure and Sustainable Initiatives

Bürgermeister Erny acknowledged the vital role played by the city’s infrastructure, including water, sewage, electricity, and telecommunications. He emphasized the need for continued investment in these areas for the well-being of Gengenbach residents. The mayor also praised the progress made in the expansion of the city’s fiber optic network, noting the rapid pace compared to other municipalities.

The success story of wind energy in Gengenbach continued, with the Windpark Rauhkasten/Steinfirst generating a record electricity output of over 34 million kilowatt-hours in 2023. As the school campus in Gengenbach expands with total investments exceeding 16 million euros, the mayor highlighted upcoming renovations and the planned construction of a full-day primary school. Erny also addressed the necessity of renovating the town hall, emphasizing the feasibility of the project with 50% funding.

“Was wir machen, machen wir auch richtig.” – Thorsten Erny

Thorsten Erny reiterated his call to support the values and principles of democracy, quoting the late Bundestag President Dr. Wolfgang Schäuble, a former resident of Gengenbach. He emphasized the importance of accepting diverse opinions and recognizing that ultimate decisions are made by the majority.

The Bürgermeister expressed his gratitude to the city’s council members, local representatives, and numerous volunteers who actively contribute to the community in various capacities, such as churches, family and senior organizations, and sports clubs. Finally, he extended his appreciation to the dedicated employees of the Stadt Gengenbach for their hard work and commitment throughout the past year.

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