Schöpstal: The mayor wants to know for the fourth time
Bernd Kalkbrenner has been mayor near Görlitz for 21 years. However, he still had goals for the next seven years.
Bernd Kalkbrenner is the mayor of Schöpstal for 21 years and is a member of the FDP. The man from Kunnersdorf never tires of his duties. He is facing a fourth legislative term. The 61-year-old is the only candidate in the June 12 ballot. SZ talked to him about his goals for the next seven years and what he has achieved.
Mr. Kalkbrenner, once mayor, and always mayor. This applies to you. Now you want to continue until you retire. What drives you?
The office gives me joy and pleasure even after 21 years. The people of Schöpstal have become dear to me, and no matter whether it is in the fire brigade, in clubs, children’s facilities or at school, working with them is beneficial to society. However, we also have many committed individuals that I can count on. This keeps me going.
You describe Schöpstal as a place of residence between two industrial regions. By that you mean Görlitz and Kodersdorf. Is it worth living in Weißer Schöps?
Over the years, we have recorded a nearly constant population of around 2,500 people. This means that departures and deaths are roughly balanced with births and arrivals. We have three institutions for children, one of which is church-run and an elementary school. Everything is used well. A doctor and a dentist work in Schöpstal and at both ends we have a restaurant and a butcher in the middle. What we miss is the small shop for daily necessities, but Schöpstal residents go outside to shop anyway.
What about building land?
Bad as far as community land goes. We are currently planning a plot of land for 3 houses in Gerbigsdorf. The location in the valley spatially prevents us from being able to unlock new locations. That’s why interested parties can only ask private individuals. We want to support them in this.
Let’s stay with the valley and protect it from floods. The Königschener, Wasser and Schöps soon became raging rivers and a danger to the people of Schöpstal. What would you do for more flood protection?
We had a long period of calm before the big floods occurred. No one can predict whether this will remain so. The problem is that we don’t have enough floodplains, and masses of water rush unchecked through the villages. The region of Gerbigsdorf and Schloss in Ebersbach is particularly at risk. A holding basin for the Koenigschen waters was planned, but this was canceled eleven years ago. But for me there is still a need to build it to protect our people and their property.
You still have to dig out the storage trough, just like the basic expansion of the S 125 via Schöpstal. This too was a long time coming.
State Road is and will continue to be a perennial problem that we as a society cannot solve on our own, but only with the State Road Construction and Traffic Office, which is responsible for the road. I don’t just care about the condition of the road for the driver, but the safety of the public. The street is also the way to school for our children, they go there by bike or on foot. There is no footpath or cycle path through the entire Schöpstal. So much money is being invested in the parallel federal highway that we seem to have been forgotten.
Another controversial issue is the expansion of the Ravon landfill in Kunnersdorf. In Schöpstal, this multi-million investment was met with resistance. But society won’t be able to stop it, right?
As a community, we don’t feel like we’re part of the project. Our citizens lack sufficient information and are not taken seriously with their concerns. This is why there is resistance, too. In addition, we end up with construction waste from two areas and we learned from Ravon that there are also inquiries from other areas and from abroad for storage in Kunnersdorf. This confirms our concerns about waste tourism. In the end, we bear the disadvantages of the landfill and are not compensated for them. Because landfill as a company under common law does not bring money in the form of trade tax to Schöpstal. We have created a coordination group with citizen participation that will bring together the interests of the municipality and the people of Schöpstal and bring them into the approval process.
But there are also positive things to report from Schöpstal that you have achieved together with the municipal council on which you can build.
In fact. I would like to mention our elementary school, for example. There are 170 pupils from Schöpstal and Königshain studying there, 130 of whom are cared for in an after-school care centre. In order to accommodate all girls and boys, we added. The state’s digital charter gives us the opportunity to provide the school with second-generation interactive boards. Our kindergarten teachers work with the first generation. In addition, the gymnasium has been renovated and the outdoor area redesigned. What matters to us now is how the children will go to and from school in the new year. The cycle schedule initiated by the county was not yet the icing on the Schöpstal cake. Improvements are required here. We’ve already made a qualifying statement on this.
What are your personal hopes for your fourth term?
That the mayor and the municipal council continue to work together constructively and advance the municipality as a whole. The best example of this is the former cattle fattening facility in Gerbigsdorf. Together we transformed an illegal landfill and abandoned buildings into a small commercial complex. All properties are now rented and generate income for the community. I also hope that my family will continue to support my back as they have done in the past. I would like to thank my three ladies for that. Because the mayor of Schöpstal is still a voluntary act. I will continue to work full time in the construction department of the administrative association.