The twelve provinces in the Netherlands have budgeted to spend 5.4 billion euro in 2007. This is 0.7 billion euro (16 percent) more than in 2006. The two main policy areas of the provinces are traffic and transport accounting for 1.7 billion euro, and welfare with 1.4 billion euro. Extra spending is budgeted for these tasks in particular in 2007: 309 million and 135 million euro respectively.
Estimated provincial expenditure, 2007
Priority for accessibility
The twelve provinces expect to spend 0.7 billion euro more in 2007 than last year. They have big plans with this money. More than 40 percent of the funds will be used to improve roads, cycle routes and bus connections. The provinces Limburg, North Brabant and Gelderland in particular want to improve access to towns and villages. These three provinces plan to invest 216 million euro more in traffic and transport than in 2006.
Traffic and transport and welfare budgets by province, 2007
Nearly 20 percent of the budgeted extra expenditure is earmarked for welfare. Overijssel and South Holland plan to spend most on this, especially on child and youth welfare. Other provincial tasks will account for 26 percent of the extra money in 2007.
Provincial revenues, 2007
Balancing the budget with reserves
The main source of income for provinces are the surcharges on motor vehicle tax (1.2 billion euro) and the general remittance from central government (1.1 billion euro). The provinces expect these revenues to increase in 2007. Revenues from motor vehicle tax are estimated to be 7 percent higher, while the increase in the general remittance is expected to be 6 percent. In spite of this, provincial revenues are insufficient to cover the expenditure foreseen for 2007. The provinces will therefore withdraw 0.3 billion euro net from their reserves to balance the provincial budgets in 2007.