Dec 9, 2016
Berlin still has an estimated 3000 unexploded WWII bombs under the surface. One was discovered this week between Neukölln and Treptow, causing the evacuation of 2600 residents. The city also has a lot of people in jail for not paying their public transport fines. Almost 10 percent of the city’s 4100 inmates are there for dodging train fares. Now the new justice senator, Dirk Behrend from the Greens, plans to roll back the policy of jailing so-called “Schwarzfahrer”. He wants to let them do community service instead. Michael Müller has been sworn in as Berlin’s mayor for a second term as head of the R2G coalition. But it hasn’t been the best week for the returning mayor. His top aide, Björn Böhning from the SPD, is being investigated for alleged corruption. The controversy is about a report written by the consulting company McKinsey into the city’s refugee situation in 2015. McKinsey originally said this would be done pro bono. But later Mr. Böhning authorized a payment of €237,000 to the consultants, one of whom was a former SPD party secretary. The mayor is supporting Mr. Böhning. The investigation continues. Residents of Neukölln and Wedding awoke this week to the first snow of the season. Meteorologists said the fine layer of white snow actually came from the city’s fossil fuel-fired power plants. Steam from the plants crystalized in the cold foggy air and fell to earth. They’re calling it “Industrieschnee.” Our next live show is on Sunday December 18 at the Comedy Cafe Berlin. Come along! This episode of Radio Spaetkauf was presented by Jöran Mandik and Daniel Stern, and was brought to you by RadioEins, Berlin’s public broadcaster.