Lauenen has done very well: in 2018, the municipality recorded CHF 1.2m more tax revenue than expected. The municipal assembly approved funding commitments for resurfacing, water supply and sanitation works.
Municipal manager Hansueli Perreten presented healthy figures to the municipal assembly. In 2018, the overall budget closed with a profit of CHF 1m, whereas a loss of CHF 91,245 had been predicted. “We received much more tax revenue than expected,” he substantiated. Tax income collected from individuals came to CHF 400,000 higher than budgeted for and property gains tax reached CHF 800,000. “Tax income and property gains tax are always very difficult to budget for,” said mayor Jörg Trachsel. Even with only a few of the very wealthy moving home, the figures can be very much affected. Also, income from property gains tax is hard to calculate. These are the experiences of all municipalities in Saanenland. The capital held by the municipality rose to CHF 8.5m in 2018. Net assets amount to CHF 5,151 per inhabitant.
Significant investments are planned
The 33 voters present voted for all three funding proposals that were on the agenda. The Lauenenstrasse is being modernised, which is budgeted at CHF 515,000. The modernisation of three sections is planned for the spring of 2020. During the road surfacing, Lauenenseestrasse will have to be closed to traffic. Therefore, the work is planned before the main season begins and also before the start of the Postbus service to Lauenensee.
Connection to the groundwater pumping station
Information was also provided about the planned connection to the Enge groundwater pumping station. The Lauenen water supply obtains water for Dorf, Trüttli and Fang exclusively from two capture springs in the Schönhalte. To comply with cantonal guidelines, the approved water supply plan envisages tapping into the Enge groundwater pumping and lifting station. There’s even work to do in Enge, where installations and technical equipment for the new connection need to be adapted. New hydrants also need to be fitted. A water supply contract to the tune of around CHF 1.289m will be drawn up with the Saanen municipality and will run for 25 years. The next move is collaborating and discussing plans with the farmers involved. If everything goes to plan, the project will be completed in the summer of 2020.
New sewer pipes
The new Gassmatt sewer pipe seems like peanuts compared to the large investment programme for the groundwater pumping plant and costs are estimated at CHF 65,000. This construction project plans to replace the defective waste water pipe. At the same time, a new rainwater pipe will be laid, running towards Blatterlibach. The construction project will start this summer.
Based on AvS/Blanca Burri
Translated by Justine Hewson