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Osaka likely to hold referendum on metropolis plan in November 2020

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In short, the plan means to reduce waste and bureaucracy.

Who wouldn’t be for that?

7 ( +9 / -2 )

But voters dismissed the argument in the May 2015 referendum with both ruling and opposition parties insisting that many costs could be cut without the reform.

More like the politicians dont want to lose their cut of the pie!

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I have heard about this restructure but I haven’t followed it closely. Admittedly I am not informed enough to form much of an opinion. If the plan would make for efficient government then I suppose that’s reason enough, but as a former resident of the Fu I would be a little sad to see the Fu fade away.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The bureaucratic tapeworms will do anything to stop this from happening. LDP special interest factions will also probably oppose it because they don't want to give momentum to the idea of decentralization. If Osaka manages to pull this off, it is likely that Nagoya will follow. The last thing the LDP clan chiefs want is power taken away from them. Osaka once again leading the way for change.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

If Osaka manages to pull this off, it is likely that Nagoya will follow.

The question I have is why isn't Yokohama trying do this as well, seeing how it is Japan's second largest city after Tokyo?

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@The Trees - The "fu" would remain; it's the "Osaka-shi" level that wouldn't exist anymore, just as "Tokyo-shi" has disappeared.

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The bureaucratic tapeworms will do anything to stop this from happening. LDP special interest factions will also probably oppose it because they don't want to give momentum to the idea of decentralization.

Indeed ....the fatcat apparatchicks will do anything to keep their hands in taxpayer pockets.

With all the bureaucratic money wasting , the long suffering average Taro & Keiko sure deserve to see their taxes being used a bit more efficiently. Cut the fat instead of the never ending  tax increases.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Great, so even more resources can be sucked into the city at the expense of the rest of the prefecture!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The "fu" would remain; it's the "Osaka-shi" level that wouldn't exist anymore, just as "Tokyo-shi" has disappeared.

I’m not familiar with this plan, but doesn’t this mean that Osaka-fu will become Osaka-to?

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Aly RustomToday  08:40 am JST

The question I have is why isn't Yokohama trying do this as well, seeing how it is Japan's second largest city after Tokyo?

Because it's got nothing to do with population size. Reducing government overlaps at prefectural and city level depends on the will of those in the governments to undertake it. Osaka is the center of the Keihanshin metro area with 20 million people and it's a cruical reform. It was already struck down in 2015 in Osaka as they thought they could reduce taxes and overlaps without reform. But that will never happen like they intend it. Reform is the way to go.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

It's an obvious and rational reduction of government and expenditure on beauracrat costs... The LDP and their love,love partners the Beauracrats will block it. It's pretty easy to see. But I'm guessing somehow this will end up as a tax increase. Best to tax more rather than spend less it's a mantra.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

According to what I was told they plan to cut the city of Osaka in two : the north which is mostly rich and the south which is mostly poor.

I would like to know how come there is "functional overlaps between the prefectural and city governments" ? There is other cities in the prefecture do they also have functional overlap with the prefecture ? What happened for the city of Osaka to have some ?

But voters dismissed the argument in the May 2015 referendum with both ruling and opposition parties insisting that many costs could be cut without the reform.

Did they really try to do something to supress the overlap and why didn't it work ? As they kept the power since then, ones could wonder if they really tried or jut faked it because they just want their plan ?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

IsthiezakToday  10:49 am JST

I’m not familiar with this plan, but doesn’t this mean that Osaka-fu will become Osaka-to?

It's merger of Osaka-shi and Sakai-shi and divide it directly into Ku like Tokyo.

This way there will be no Shi thus elimination of all the middle men local bureaucrats and politicians.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Nothing to do with the good of Osaka, only the ambition of a few

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

People of Osaka had a referendum on the metropolis plan in 2015 and rejected it. Their decision should be respected. Having another referendum just because you don’t like the result of the first one is a tactic often used by dictators who want to create semblance of democracy.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It's a great idea because all the different areas will be treated equally and they can pool resources. Osaka City is way ahead in terms of development compared to the other areas and it will oblige the metropolitan government to ensure gains are spread across the board. There is also a lot of overlap in the supply of municipal services such as for education and refuse collection. Nothing has been done since it was rejected that proved it wasn't worth doing and no savings have been made because they can't be made at the same level. The main issue it seemed to get rejected on was that the old people thought they would have had to travel further to get to a government office but that's not necessarily the case and they'd save money from the streamlining.

There is a big gap between the south and north of the prefecture but nothing is being done about it because neither area is incentivised to help the other...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I guess the majority voting it down TWICE just isn't enough for these insecure politicians (who so want to be as 'great as Tokyo') to simply stop trying to get their way. Reminds me of Brexit a little, the people who vote for it have absolutely no idea what it means if and when they actually get it. I know people in my town who get angry at me that I don't support it, and when I explain how it means they may well lose their jobs (as workers of the City Hall in an small town), they say they had no idea. When I ask why they're for it they literally just say, "Because Osaka is every bit as good as Tokyo!" Small, independent City Halls, who are more in tune with the local people and events, would be controlled by politicians living in the city, who are most certainly NOT interested in cutting wasteful spending, and have no idea about the local wants and needs.

They can cut this spending at the top -- get rid of the guys who sit there holding these millions of dollars referendums on things the people have already said "No" to but who sit around devising ways to get it done anyway.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

It's merger of Osaka-shi and Sakai-shi and divide it directly into Ku like Tokyo.

This way there will be no Shi thus elimination of all the middle men local bureaucrats and politicians.

That sounds about right. Three things to note here.

First, public sector employee is a long-running number one as job you want for your son or husband. Cushy job for life is the way people see it. That's because they don't get "restructured" like people in the private sector.

Two, the population of Osaka has flipped or is on the point of flipping into decline. I think its only Tokyo and Okinawa where the population is going up.

Three, as far as I remember, Osaka is still up the wazoo in debt from all the landfill development in the bay. Areas like Maehama that was supposed to host the Olympics, that island with the Gaudi-lookalike gomi burner, that APC (ATC??) shopping center place, ...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I bet the turnout is barely 30%, if that.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

He really think that it is possible ???.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The question I have is why isn't Yokohama trying do this as well, seeing how it is Japan's second largest city after Tokyo?

I am guessing it's a cultural thing. Osaka people view themselves in a very different way than people in Yokohama. Osaka was historically a very significant place, and they still carry a lot of that confidence in them and view themselves as an important player in Japanese politics. While Yokohama is the second largest city, they are mostly seen as Tokyo's pet town, as a lot of people in Kanagawa commute to Tokyo for work during the day. Osaka is also the second largest metropolis in Japan, while Yokohama is part of Tokyo's metro area. Osaka pretty much made Tokyo what it is today. They gave them their power, and now they're gonna take it away from them.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Having another referendum just because you don’t like the result of the first one is a tactic often used by dictators who want to create semblance of democracy.

If the "dictators" are abiding by the decision, that suggests that they aren't actually dictators at all.

In this case, the Osaka Ishin party owns both seats of governor and mayor, and I think it's likely that 5 years on a referendum vote would give a positive vote this time around.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I know people in my town who get angry at me that I don't support it, and when I explain how it means they may well lose their jobs (as workers of the City Hall in an small town), they say they had no idea. When I ask why they're for it they literally just say, "Because Osaka is every bit as good as Tokyo!" 

You make them sound pretty stupid and naive. Some might take that as an argument in favour of the plan to eliminate wasteful cost. 

controlled by politicians living in the city, who are most certainly NOT interested in cutting wasteful spending

I believe that Osaka Ishin does have great interest in cutting wasteful spending.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The reduction of superfluous political offices and public entities. It should be the priority of any coherent administration. Public money earmarked for the benefit of society in general. And if possible. That allows a reduction in taxes so that people have greater purchasing power.

Nippon Ishin no Kai has very interesting proposals. That should take into account the opposition parties that are running to govern Japan in the future. Yukio Edano's Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan for example. It should have proposals like these to defeat Abe's LDP.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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