Local government: City Council and College

Leiden is controlled by the City Council and the College of Mayor and Aldermen. The city council is the highest body of Leiden and is responsible for all important decisions; the policy of the municipality of Leiden. The college of Mayor and Aldermen is responsible for the execution of policies and the daily administration of the municipality.

City Council

The city council is the highest body of the municipality of Leiden. The principle tasks of the city council are drawing up the policy outline and supervising the execution of policies in general. The city council determines the annual budget for Leiden as well as other important aspects. Leiden has 39 city councillors from 9 political parties. The current composition of the city council is as follows:

  • D66 (Dutch Democrats 1966) – 9 seats
  • GroenLinks (Green Party)– 8 seats
  • VVD (Dutch People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy)- 6 seats
  • PvdA (Dutch Labour Party)- 4 seats
  • CDA (Christian Democratic Appeal) – 3 seats
  • Partij voor de Dieren (Party for the Animals) - 3 seats
  • SP (Dutch Socialist Party) - 3 seats 
  • Partij Sleutelstad (Local Party)- 2 seats
  • ChristenUnie (Dutch Christian Union) - 1 seat

City council meetings are open to the public. Contact the secretariat of the City Council (griffie) about the date and time of the meetings. The meetings are held in Dutch. Contact the secretariat of the City Council (griffie) about the date and time of the meetings.

Elections of the City Council

City council elections are held throughout The Netherlands once every four years. The outcome of the elections determines the composition of the city council.  The next council elections will be held in March 2022. All residents who are at least 18 years of age can go to the polls on Election Day. City council elections are not limited to those residents that have Dutch nationality. Foreigners that have lived for at least five years in The Netherlands and have a residence permit have passive and active suffrage at municipal level. Foreigners from countries that are a member of the European Union have these rights from the moment they take up residency in a Dutch municipality.

The College of Mayor and Aldermen

The college of Mayor and Aldermen is responsible for the daily administration of the municipality. Read more about the college of Mayor and Aldermen (in Dutch).