Werte Damen und Herren,
Rückblickend war das Jahr 2023 für die Stadt Eupen ein ruhiges Jahr. In einer Legislaturperiode die von großen Krisen durchzogen wurde. Anfang 2020 die Coronakrise, Absage der Schneeklasse, Lockdown (ein bis dato unbekanntes Wort), Krankenhäuser und Pflegeheime gingen über ihre Belastungsgrenzen hinaus, Schließungen der Schulen, der Spielplätze sämtlicher Sport- und Kulturaktivitäten, Einschränkung des privaten Lebens, Schließung der Grenzen, Ausstellen der Passierscheine und und und… über anderthalb Jahr haben wir etwas nie dagewesenes „gemanagt“
Sie in Ihren Einrichtungen, Ihrem Engagement, in Ihrer täglichen Arbeit, wir in der Politik und der Verwaltung. Jeder in seinem Alltag, seinem Leben. Es entstand Frust und Wut, aber auch Innovation, Kreativität und Solidarität.

Flaute die Corona Krise im Sommer 2021 langsam ab, überrollte uns im wahrsten Sinne des Wortes die Hochwasserkatastrophe.
Als eine der wenigen Gemeinden hat die Stadt Eupen zeitig einen Krisenstab gegründet und am Mittwochnachmittag damit begonnen Anwohner zu evakuieren. Rückblickend die beste Entscheidung der gesamten Legislaturperiode. Denn das, was in den Stunden nach dieser Entscheidung folgte übertraf sämtliche Vorstellung.

Es übertraf sämtliche Voraussagen, sämtliche Szenarien die wir uns im Krisenstab an Zerstörung gedacht haben, sämtliche Bilder die man sich ausmalen konnte… als wir erneut in den frühen Morgenstunden die Viertel besuchten und das Wasser abzog.
Gleichzeitig übertraf aber auch die Zusammenarbeit sämtliche Erwartungen an Kollegialität und sich aufeinander verlassen können. Noch einmal heute ganz laut meinen ganz persönlichen Dank, an euch, die ihr wisst, wen ich meine.
In der Zeit danach waren Solidarität, Engagement, Einsatz, Unterstützung und Menschlichkeit, zwischen Privatpersonen, Organisationen und Behörden, unbeschreiblich. All diese Momente haben sich tief in das Gedächtnis von uns eingegraben. Bei jenen, die Verantwortung bei der Bewältigung der Krise trugen, den vielen Menschen, denen alles genommen wurde, den Vereinigungen, die ihre Infrastruktur zerstört sahen, den Helfern und Unterstützern.
Seit diesem Moment fließt viel Energie von vielen Menschen in den Wiederaufbau – alleine in der Unterstadt sind aktuell seitens der öffentlichen Hand Bauprojekte im Wert von mehr als 43 Millionen Euro angestoßen, mit dem Fokus auf einen Wiederaufbau, der mehr Lebensqualität und einen zukunftsgerichteten Energiestandart bietet.

Mitten in diese Anstrengungen aller, Begann mit der Überfall Russlands auf die Ukraine Anfang 2022 ein Krieg in Europa. Die Gesellschaft war gefordert die Unterbringung der geflüchteten Menschen zu organisieren und konfrontiert mit einer Aufwärtsspirale sämtlicher Kosten- insbesondere bei Energie. Die Spirale der Kosten hat zwar schon längst ihren Zenit erreicht und ist wieder gesunken, aber um nur eine Zahl zu nennen: im Jahr 2021 zahlten wir noch eine halbe Million Euro für Energiekosten, heute ist im Haushalt eine Summe von 1,2 Millionen Euro im Haushalt vorgesehen. – Es ist also bei weitem nicht so, als könne man von „Entlastungen“ sprechen.

All diese Herausforderungen, fordern ein ständiges Anpassen, Weiterentwickeln, infrage stellen des Bestehenden, die Notwendigkeit auch unangenehme und unpopuläre Entscheidungen zu treffen, um eine stabile Lage für unsere Gemeinde zu erreichen und gleichzeitig Spielräume zu ermöglichen, um neuen Herausforderungen zu begegnen.

Herausforderungen wie die Verfügbarkeit unserer Sicherheitskräfte.

Für viele Menschen eine „Selbstverständlichkeit“. Damit diese Verfügbarkeit aufrecht erhalten werden kann greifen die Gemeinden immer tiefer in die Brieftasche. Wir sind immer stärker gezwungen bei der Feuerwehr und beim Rettungsdienst auf hauptberufliches Personal zu setzen, um eine flächendeckende Hilfe garantieren zu können.

Auch die Anforderungen an den Polizeidienst steigen.

Längst spürt man auch hier einen Personalmangel. Die individuellen Belastungen nehmen zu. Die Infrastruktur der Gebäude ist eine wahre Zumutung, insbesondere in Eupen. So haben wir in den vergangenen Jahren intensiv daran gearbeitet, dass neue Polizeigebäude auf den Weg zu bringen. Die Gemeinden haben ihre Hausaufgaben gemacht, die Finanzierung ist gesichert, wir haben als Stadt Eupen unsere Dotation um 34% auf 2,4 Millionen erhöht. – Andere Körperschaften haben ihre Hausaufgaben leider bis heute nicht gemacht!
Es liegt nicht in der Natur der Polizisten, der Feuerwehrleute und der Rettungssanitäter sich in den Fokus der Öffentlichkeit zu stellen, deshalb tue ich es heute hier als Bürgermeisterin zuständig für die Sicherheit ganz bewusst- denn seien wir doch mal ehrlich, im besten Fall bemerken wir sie nicht, denn dann ist alles in Ordnung, alles geht seinen normalen Gang.

Und doch sind sie jeder Zeit da. 24/24 Stunden 365 Tage im Jahr können wir uns auf ihren Einsatz verlassen. Ihre Aufgaben und Einsatzgebiete werden vielfältiger, die Anerkennung und der Respekt gegenüber ihrem Engagement sinkt. Aber wir müssen uns immer vor Augen führen, sie sind in der Krise unsere ersten Verbündeten. So müssen wir Sorge tragen, dass sie entsprechend handlungsfähig sind- in der Hoffnung eigentlich nie darauf zurück greifen zu müssen.
Danke für eure Professionalität, für eure Verlässlichkeit, für das Um- und Mitdenken bei all den Herausforderungen, die in unseren Gemeinden anstehen-Ich habe von euch viel lernen dürfen.
So blicken wir mit dem Bewusstsein in die Zukunft, dass das Thema Sicherheit und soziale Teilhabe uns finanziell und personell weiter fordern wird. Wir neue Wege beschreiten und stärker denn je Zusammenarbeiten müssen. Mit unseren Nachbargemeinden, unterschiedlichen Behörden und Einrichtungen.

Wir blicken in die Zukunft, mit der Erkenntnis, dass wir uns an den Klimawandel anpassen müssen, unsere Stadt, unsere Dienste und unsere Bevölkerung rüsten müssen, für zukünftige Extremwetterereignisse und Krisen die kommen können.

Es gilt uns auf die Zukunft vor zu bereiten, nicht stehen zu bleiben und rückwärtsgewandt zu klammern. Es wird eine Herausforderung Dinge zu bewahren, die wir kennen und schätzen gelernt haben und neue Spielräume zu ermöglichen um uns für die Zukunft zu rüsten.
Neue Spielräume für energetischen Sanierung oder Energieproduktion, neue Spielräume um beispielsweise alte und neue Vereinigungen mit ihren Ideen zu unterstützen. Neue Spielräume um weiterhin sichere Fuss- und Radwege zu gestalten, den Bahnhof nutzerfreundlicher zu machen, Straßen zu sanieren, Sportinfrastruktur zu renovieren oder gar neu zu schaffen, Biodiversität zu fördern, Schulprojekte und soziale Teilhabe möglich zu machen.

Hier gilt nicht das Prinzip des „Lautesten“ – nicht der der brüllt oder droht hat am meisten Rechte oder ist der Wichtigste. Bekommt das größte Stück des Kuchens. Es ist und bleibt ein ständiges Abwägen aller Faktoren, unterschiedlicher Partner, vielfältigster Überlegungen mit dem finanziellen Spielraum insgesamt im Hinterkopf. Ohne blinde Versprechungen.

Denn getragen wird eine Stadt von jedem einzelnen Einwohner jeder einzelnen Einwohnerin. Jeder und Jede kann einen kleinen und großen Beitrag zum Miteinander leisten. Der/ Die eine mehr, der/ die andere weniger.
Sie, liebe Gäste, haben sich für das Mehr entscheiden! Tragen Verantwortung, entwickeln Ihre Organisation weiter, sind Partner bei unseren Projekten, setzen sich ein, machen mit, nicht zur persönlichen Bereicherung, sondern aus Überzeugung, Freude und Pflichtbewusstsein, sie gestalten Zukunft.
Dafür möchten wir Ihnen DANKE sagen. Sie unterstützen und machen unsere Stadt bunter und vielfältiger!

Werte Damen und Herren,

Wie unsere Vergangenheit und unsere Zukunft aussehen wird ist auch immer eine Frage der Perspektive.
Optimist und Pessimist unterscheiden sich dabei vor allem darin, wie sie die Dinge ansehen, worauf sie ihr Augenmerk richten.

Pessimisten sehen beim Schweizer Käse nur die Löcher, Optimisten freuen sich auf den Genuss desselbigen.
Pessimisten haben ein halbleeres Glas vor sich, Optimisten hingegen ein halbvolles.
Pessimisten ärgern sich beim Anblick einer Rose über die Dornen, Optimisten sehen die Schönheit der Königin der Blumen.
Pessimisten ärgern sich über das, was sie nicht haben, Optimisten freuen sich über die Dinge, die sie besitzen.

Betrachtet man es genau, dann haben beide Recht. Es ist Ansichtssache, ob ein Glas halb voll oder eben halb leer ist.
Auch wenn beide also Recht haben, so unterscheiden sie sich in einem wichtigen Punkt: Der Pessimist fühlt sich grundsätzlich schlecht und nörgelt, während der Optimist sich zumeist gut fühlt und positive Energie einsetzen kann.
Oder, um es nochmals mit den Worten von Charlie Rivel zu sagen: „Der Optimist hat nicht weniger oft unrecht als der Pessimist, aber er lebt froher.“
Ich wünschen Ihnen und Ihren Familien von ganzem Herzen, dass Sie zu den Optimisten gehören. Sie haben seit Jahren bewiesen, dass Sie Herausforderungen annehmen, kreativ sind und nach vorne blicken. Bewahren Sie diese Kunst des positiven optimistischen Blicks. Denn den Kopf in den Sand stecken und nach hinten schauen, jammern was war, ist keine Lösung für die Zukunft unserer Gesellschaft.

Im Namen meiner Kolleginnen und Kollegen sowie den Diensten der Stadt Eupen wünsche ich Ihnen und Ihren Familien ein optimistisches Jahr 2024.

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  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
  • Comments must be limited to the number of words displayed above the comment box.
  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.
  • Please show respect to the opinions of others no matter how seemingly far-fetched.
  • Abusive, foul language, and/or divisive comments may be deleted without notice.
  • Each blog member is allowed limited comments, as displayed above the comment box.
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  • Please limit one comment after any comment posted per post.

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