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Mayor Karácsony: Orbán Gov’t Punishing People of Budapest by Withholding Public Transport Funds

Hungary Today 2021.11.24.

The Orbán-government is “punishing the people of Budapest” by withholding contracted public transport funding, said Budapest Mayor Gergely Karácsony.

After the leadership of Budapest threatened to halt public transport on Thursday if the Orbán administration continues to withhold state subsidies, the government said that public transport provision is the Budapest administration’s main task, and if Mayor Karácsony is unable to solve the financing, then he is unfit for the position. The central administration has also said that all that’s required to solve the problems is the mayor’s signature.

In reaction to this, Karácsony posted on Facebook that rather than the government supporting the city, it was the other way around, insisting that the government deducted 98 percent of local taxes paid in the capital, while the city had to pay into the central budget from its own revenues. Budapest has become a net payer into the central budget, he said, adding that this had once been “unimaginable.”

Karácsony insisted the government would disable Budapest’s public transport by withholding the 12 billion forints which was owed to the city as part of the budget law.

The government, the mayor added, was “punishing the people of Budapest.”

Featured photo illustration by Zoltán Máthé/MTI