Mannheim to elect Germany's first 'night mayor'
Ten candidates for the office of Germany's first “night mayor” will stand for election on Thursday - appropriately at 6:30 p.m.
Already a paid position in cities such as Amsterdam, London and Zurich, night mayors take over once most employees clock out for the day, ensuring that everything related to nightlife - from cuisine to clubs - functions smoothly.
The position will not only include growing nighttime businesses, but also mediating conflicts, including complaints from neighbours who feel after-hour noise from clubs is too loud, reported the Mannheimer Morgen newspaper.
The position will only require 50 hours work a month, so Mannheim's "Nachtbürgermeister" will still be able to able to get a little shut eye during nighttime hours.
Mannheim, situated along the Rhine river in Baden-Württemberg with just over 300,000 inhabitants, received 40 applicants for the position. A board consisting of representatives from the city and its club scene selected two women and eight men as finalists.
The top contenders are between 24 and 53 years old and boast different backgrounds - caterers, DJs and musicians, but also a lecturer in economics.
In the final on Thursday, board members as well as the public will pick their night mayor after they pitch their plans for improving Mannheim’s nocturnal life.
The position comes with a remuneration of €1,200 a month, but some residents have argued that the money and time could be spent more wisely, with schools and public infrastructure in need of repair.
But, as the Mannheimer Morgen wrote, “There will not be fewer streets built or schools cleaned because we have a night mayor. Let’s give it a try!”