Düsseldorf (dpa / lnw) - Employees of the State Chancellery are also involved in processing the coalition agreement between the CDU and the Greens in North Rhine-Westphalia. The State Chancellery rejected the SPD's criticism of the involvement of state officials. "It corresponds to the current state practice in the federal government as well as in the federal states that the administration acts in an advisory and supportive manner in the process of forming a government," said a spokesman on Thursday.
Since the coalition agreement agreed between the parties forms the basis of the state government's work program for the new legislative period, there is "a special public interest" in the state administration's participation, according to the spokesman. "In this context, employees of the State Chancellery are also involved in the drafting of the coalition agreement."
The background is a small request from the opposition SPD, who wants to know whether employees of the State Chancellery are taking on tasks in the CDU negotiating team. The SPD faction suspects a mixture of party and government work behind it. It is "unusual" for officials of the incumbent government to be involved in the creation of a coalition agreement. The duty of political neutrality applies to the employees of the State Chancellery.
According to the State Chancellery, the state administration provides, among other things, the necessary specialist information and expertise from the business areas of the state government. In addition, submissions and position papers from social groups, interest groups or associations would be made available. "The support and advice described takes place in all areas of the coalition negotiations, including in the area of editorial activities," it said.
The CDU and Greens in North Rhine-Westphalia have been negotiating a government alliance since the end of May under the leadership of Prime Minister Hendrik Wüst (CDU) and Green Party leader Mona Neubaur. It would be the first black-green coalition in NRW. More than 150 people in 13 working groups are involved in the coalition talks.