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The district and its municipalities

The district and its municipalities are in a close partnership to each other. The district and the belonging municipalities share out the execution of the duties which are done from a city that constitutes a district of its own.

Even nowadays - after the concluded area reform in 1975 - the size of the municipalities belonging to a district are very different and go from Legden with round 7.000 residents to Bocholt with round 71.000 residents. To take the following difference in efficiency into consideration, the district also executes duties for the small municipalities (e.g. building inspection, youth welfare office, direction and insurance of traffic, foreigner's affairs etc.) which are done from the big cities themselves.

Beside the "duties" that are assigned by law, the district and the municipalities overtake voluntary duties. The district or the municipality will overtake these duties depending on the fact that it is a matter of local or overlocal community. The district overtakes following duties:

  • Overlocal duties, if an uniform execution over the borders of the communities is necessary (e.g. vocational education, health affairs, public short-distance transport, natural parks)
  • Supplementary duties, if the efficiency of the communities are not sufficient (e.g. school psychological duty, trade promotion)
  • Compensating duties, if a financial compensation to create the same value of a living relationship in the district is necessary (e.g. promotion of centres of leisure).


Topographical plan of the cities and the communities belonging to the district