Andreas Hostettler has been director of inner-cantonal affairs for 100 days now. In an interview with Andrea Muff of the Zuger Zeitung, he talked about the new challenges he faces, not least that of streamlining administration.
The FDP politician said how happy he was to be responsible for this department, which covers a wide range of areas, such as social matters, elections, forestry, children’s and adults’ guardianship, the listing of buildings of architectural and historic interest and the housing of asylum-seekers, to mention just a few. Hence, he has to deal with a multiplicity of different tasks, meaning every day is different, so much so that he cannot really talk of routine. In addition to this he is often out of the offices at number 2 Neugasse, meeting up, for example, with a forester in Oberägeri or visiting the asylum-seeker transit station in Steinhausen. “It is very important for me to see how things function in each of the areas I am responsible for,” he said.
At present it is only to be expected he is having to prioritise what needs doing and to ensure he is well briefed on matters pertaining to his job. On this point he expressed his gratitude to his head of administration, not least for his patience, and to his broader team who deal, for example, with his correspondence, ensuring all questions are rigorously answered.
As mentioned, and perhaps as a result of being a businessman, he is busy looking to see where processes can be streamlined and ensuring meetings are finely tuned and to the point. “What we should not tolerate at all is over-capacity in any area,” he said, both for the sake of taxpayers and employees. “Administration must be cut back,” he insisted.
One of the ways to ensure this is the case is through even more digitisation, this in addition to promoting synergy and centralisation of tasks.
He mentioned one great advantage Zug had as a canton, namely that paths of communication here were short, though even closer relations with civic communities of the various municipalities were sought.
As to some of his more immediate challenges, he mentioned that of the financing of a research project looking at social welfare in the canton and a new law relating to the protection of historic buildings and ancient monuments. Another matter related to improving support for the disabled. As to asylum-seekers, in addition to ensuring all was in order at the transit centre, Hostettler was also keen to ensure refugees’ integration into the world of work.
Summing up, the new member of the cantonal government said that, while much was new to him in his new role, it was also most exciting.