Basle-Country, St. Gallen and Uri must vote on rents for shops, loans to businesses and even a constitutional amendment.
The citizens of three German-speaking cantons vote on November 29 on subjects related to the coronavirus: rent reductions for businesses affected by the pandemic in Basel-Landschaft, business loans in St. Gallen and modification of the constitution in Uri.
In Basel-Country, citizens are voting on a new law which provides for a reduction of one third of rents for businesses seriously affected by the pandemic. The parliament approved the law by 53 votes to 34. The approval not having reached 80%, the people must therefore vote.
BL: ten million francs
Concretely, the law provides that the canton pays a third of the rent of the businesses if the owners renounce on their side to a third of the rental income. Tenants of commercial premises thus have only one third of the rent to pay. This so-called three-thirds model is modeled on the system applied in Basel-City.
The contributions to the payment of rents are valid for the months of April, May and June of this year. The new law sets the maximum contribution per business at 3000 francs per month. The total cost for the canton is estimated at ten million francs.
SG: supplement to federal support
The citizens of St. Welsh vote on the cantonal loan program to financially support small and medium-sized businesses affected by the pandemic. The urgent government decree passed in April was converted into law in May. The law is subject to a compulsory referendum, as the total cost of the program could reach a maximum of 50 million francs.
The law supplements the financial support of the Confederation. Cantonal business assistance is provided in the form of loans. No lost fund contribution is paid. The loan appraisal is carried out by the banks and controls are provided to prevent abuse and limit the risks that the loans cannot be repaid. Only companies whose turnover does not exceed ten million francs can benefit from this aid.
On the basis of applications already filed or pending, the canton expects total loans to reach 3 to 3.5 million francs, therefore significantly less than the maximum amount provided for by law. Parliament approved the law by 104 votes to 5.
UR: urgent decrees
In Uri, the citizens vote on the addition in the constitution of an article giving the government the right to issue urgent decrees in the event of a crisis. The pandemic quickly showed that there are emergency situations in which rapid government action is needed, the executive said.
Unlike the Confederation and most cantons, Uri currently has no constitutional basis for the government to act urgently without having to go through ordinary legislative procedure. In parliament, the new constitutional article was approved by 54 votes to 3.
(ATS / NXP)