Summary record


Measures introduced by the City to deal with the energy crisis


As we face a crisis stemming from the war in Ukraine and the surge in energy prices, other cities and countries have taken steps – including some drastic ones – to reduce their energy consumption. These measures include reducing the heating in some public buildings, placing restrictions on the use of air conditioning and limiting public lighting. Since I submitted my question in August 2022, the international situation has not improved and the City recently shared with the press a series of measures to combat the energy crisis and mitigate its consequences. I would like to ask the college of aldermen to present these measures to the municipal council.


The current energy crisis is presenting the City with three major challenges: helping the most disadvantaged residents cope with dizzying price increases, conserving as much energy as possible and heavily promoting renewable energies.

At its meeting on 28 March 2022, the municipal council approved an increase in the solidarity benefits and the introduction of an energy allowance. Information about the solidarity benefits and energy allowance is posted on the City of Luxembourg website. However, it seems that this information failed to reach most of the 6,000 plus potential beneficiaries, given that as of 26 September 2022, only 1,974 people had submitted applications.

What other measures has the City approved or considered to help households deal with the surge in energy prices?

What is the role of the Office social (Social Welfare Office) in this situation?

Is the college of aldermen still willing to further increase the solidarity benefits and energy allowance, keeping in mind that energy prices are due to be capped as of 1 October 2022 but that there will still be something of a price increase?

Given that the City has drafted a citywide energy conservation plan, but has control over only 4.3% of the energy consumed in Luxembourg City, it should try to exert an influence over the remaining 95.7%.

What initiatives has the City taken to promote the production of renewable energies in the city and particularly in its buildings, whether existing or still to be built? I would like to remind you of a motion that was submitted by the déi Lénk group on this topic and passed by the municipal council in 2017. When does the City intend to present the measures it has introduced in this area to the municipal council?

I should also point out that the déi Lénk group submitted another motion asking the college of aldermen to support residents with the insulation of their buildings. I hope the relevant advisory committee will discuss this motion sometime in autumn 2022.


In July 2022, the City embarked on an in-depth study of the areas where it could implement energy-saving measures. The measures adopted as a result were presented to the relevant advisory committees and the press in mid-September. It was decided to lower the temperatures in municipal buildings based on their use (administrative buildings, community centres, schools, theatres, etc.). The details on these measures were published. We expect to reduce gas consumption by around 6% per degree Celsius, and to reduce energy consumption by 15% compared with the average from 2018 to 2020.

Public lighting is already very economical, mainly due to the installation of LED lighting. However, it was decided that further energy savings would be made in terms of the fortress lighting, street lighting and "Winterlights" programme, for example. Consequently, there will be no ice skating rink or radiant heaters during "Winterlights" this year. The street lighting schedule has been aligned with the schedule used by the national government. Rest assured that the City will nevertheless work to ensure safety. There are also plans to reduce water consumption.

These measures will be adjusted as needed, depending on how the international situation plays out. For example, we could further reduce the temperature in the swimming pools and other buildings.

It is possible that we might have to close a swimming pool (e.g. the "Badanstalt") at some point in the future. This will depend on how the crisis develops internationally. The City intends to keep swimming lessons for schoolchildren going as long as possible.

The City also expects the national government and businesses to introduce the necessary energy-saving measures. Information about these measures is posted on the City of Luxembourg website, and "City" magazine will be covering this topic in its next issue.


The measures we have been discussing today are in the process of being implemented.

Within Luxembourg City, 95.7% of the energy is consumed not by the City but by other stakeholders, such as businesses and the national government. For privacy reasons, Creos cannot provide a detailed breakdown of energy consumption in Luxembourg City. It can tell us only the percentage of consumption by industry or government administration for the country as a whole.

Everyone needs to understand that the only way we can try to avoid an energy shortage is if we work together. Regarding energy costs, the City has introduced the energy allowance and is determined to take additional measures if need be. The national government has also recently proposed a set of other measures as part of the tripartite dialogue.

We want to set an example through the steps we have taken. I do not know of any other plans that are as detailed as ours. I want to thank the City departments that were involved in developing these measures for their outstanding work.


Regarding the solidarity benefits and energy allowance, the City individually contacts by post anyone who receives the State cost of living benefits or energy allowance. The first letter is sent in May and a second one is sent the following January as a reminder to anyone who has not yet responded. We have already received 1,044 applications and we expect many more to be submitted in the coming months, keeping in mind that there are around 6,000 potential beneficiaries. Based on past experience, between 75% and 80% of households that are entitled to these benefits return the application form to us.

All the necessary information is available on the City's website. If anyone has additional questions, they can go to the reception desk of the City's Direction des Affaires sociales (Directorate for Social Affairs) at 28, Place Guillaume II.

One of the routine tasks of staff in the Office social is to automatically inform clients about the allowances and benefits available and help them navigate the application process. This is part of their daily duties. To date, the Office social has not seen a significant increase in applications related to rising energy costs, but this could change in the coming weeks and months.

We are continually striving to make the application process as easy as possible for residents.

Use of rooms in Hôtel Graace rented by the City


Since April 2022, following a unanimous decision by the municipal council of 28 March 2022, the City has rented Hôtel Graace for €39,500 per month to house Ukrainian refugees. However, it appears that the 28 rooms are mostly vacant because the refugees prefer to be housed in a large accommodation facility with other Ukrainians.

I want to stress that my question is not meant to criticise Ukrainian refugees. I take part in all the demonstrations supporting them, and it is entirely understandable that families would not want to stay in hotel rooms, which lack kitchen facilities, for example.

Why haven't the rooms in Hôtel Graace been made available to refugees from other countries or other people who need emergency housing in the city, such as residents from the building where a café was recently devastated by a fire in Bonnevoie?

What is the current occupancy rate of Hôtel Graace?

Does the City have other plans for these rooms, given that the lease was signed for six years?

This matter has not gone according to plan. Has the City learned any lessons from the experience?


The City has demonstrated considerable solidarity in the last few months. A lot of housing has been provided to different categories of affected persons. Regarding the management of Hôtel Graace, the City has decided to enter into an agreement with Caritas, which has extensive experience in this area and which does an excellent job receiving thousands of refugees.

For management and logistical reasons, the National Reception Office (Office nationale de l'accueil – ONA), Caritas and the Red Cross initially tried to house as many people as possible in large facilities. The only large room in Hôtel Graace has been occupied by a Ukrainian family for several months. The other rooms in Hôtel Graace are too small to accommodate entire families. They will be occupied as part of the Service logement en milieu ouvert (Communal Housing Service – SLEMO) by single people aged 18 to 27 with or without children, as soon as the City receives the relevant approval from the Ministry of Education, Children and Youth (Ministère de l'Éducation nationale, de l'Enfance et de la Jeunesse. This approval is expected to be issued in the coming days.

The City has not housed other categories of people at Hôtel Graace so as to avoid the need to rehouse them again after the ministry's approval comes through.


With regard to the fire in the café in Bonnevoie that Councillor Foetz mentioned, I was on the scene at around three o'clock in the morning. Representatives from the City's Service Logement (Housing Department) were also there and they immediately offered to rehouse the affected residents. However, they declined our offer and chose to live temporarily with relatives in a town located in the eastern part of the country. Later on, they reached out to the City and asked to be rehoused. They were received by the college of aldermen along with a City employee serving as their interpreter, but they turned down the rehousing offer made by the City.


We offered to house them in one of our shelters. They declined this offer and ultimately found another solution.

Foyers scolaires waiting list

Question posed by Ana Correia Da Veiga

In early September 2022, 108 children with no alternative care arrangements were on the waiting list for the City's foyers scolaires (childcare centres). The college of aldermen said that this waiting list resulted from the shortage of qualified educators.

I would like to remind you that the college of aldermen had written in the 2017–2023 coalition agreement that it would "continue working to provide modern, welcoming facilities for schools and extracurricular activities in the city's 24 districts, while promoting closer collaboration between schools and foyers scolaires", that innovative models, such as the extended-day school programme, would be implemented and that the homework help service would be expanded to all districts in order to promote equal opportunities for all children.

To what extent are the foyers scolaires obligated to accommodate children whose parents have no alternative care arrangements and meet the priority criteria?

Is the City required to approve every application for free services, such as lunch and homework supervision?

Does the Service Foyers scolaires (Childcare Department) work with parents to look for alternative care arrangements (e.g. home day care, such as in Beaufort) when the child's district foyer scolaire is full?

Is transportation provided for children who must attend a different foyer scolaire?

How many job vacancies were there in foyers scolaires at the start of the 2022–2023 school year?

How many places in the foyers scolaires cannot be filled due to job vacancies?

Does the City have a strategy to make foyers scolaires educator jobs more attractive? Many educators seem to prefer to work in other municipalities, where their schedule is not limited to 35 hours per week.

Does the Service Foyers scolaires measure employee satisfaction? Does it conduct exit interviews with employees who resign so as to better understand their reasons for leaving?


The question about the foyers scolaires waiting list comes up every year and has already been addressed by the school commission.

The tally of 108 children is from the beginning of September and is outdated. A first acceptance committee meeting (a meeting between the directors and management of the foyers scolaires) was held in early June 2022 As it does every year, during this meeting the committee examined whether the enrolment applications submitted in February/March 2022 were complete, whether applications were welfare cases, and what the family situation was like. Parents without alternative care arrangements are always given priority, and the corresponding applications are approved at the first meeting of the acceptance committee. A second meeting of the acceptance committee is held right before the start of the school year. At that time the committee reviews new applications and those whose priority status has changed.

The Service Foyers scolaires is not obligated to approve all applications for free services. The foyers scolaires often offer families partial enrolment for their children, for example for Tuesday and Thursday afternoons, when the foyers scolaires are less crowded. If the foyers scolaires are full, they provide parents with the contact information of private centres located nearby.

The Service Foyers scolaires does not provide transportation for children attending a private childcare centre. It is the private childcare centres that provide transportation.

As of now, there are 28 full-time job vacancies in the Service Foyers scolaires and around 300 children cannot be admitted because of that. The waiting list currently has 63 children categorised as priority 1 (no alternative care arrangements).

The City is trying hard to hire additional educators as quickly as possible. To do this it is attending job days and has put together a promotional film.

The Service Foyers scolaires regularly conducts interviews with its staff, and the management frequently attends the team sessions that are held every Wednesday afternoon. The Service Foyers scolaires also conducts exit interviews, and employees' reasons for leaving are shared with the Direction des Ressources humaines (Human Resources Directorate) and the college of aldermen. Going off in search of a new challenge is the most frequently cited reason for leaving.


The individuals concerned often want to work closer to home, which is a completely understandable reason for leaving.