Government

Belgium became independent in 1830 and Brussels became the capital of Belgium, under a new king and parliament.

Brussels, the capital of Belgium, is an independent congress, the mayor and administration, all whom are elected by the people.

On June 18, 1989, the citizens of Brussels elected their regional representatives directly for the first time because of the Brussels-Capital Region is considered an autonomous region in the rest of the country of Belgium, which is a constitutional monarchy.

On July 14, 1993, the Belgian Parliament approved the creation of a federal state of Belgium, which amended the Constitution and Devolution acts to give back to the regions (including Brussels) more political power.

Local Governments
Brussels Region has about 1 million inhabitants in 19 municipalities. Each of these municipalities has its own government as well. There is a mayor and a cabinet for each municipality that are responsible for local schools, some roads, town planning, fire services, water supply and social work.

When residents move from one municipality to another, they must enroll in the new community to receive a new resident card – these are not equivalent to identity cards, which are published separately.

Although it may seem the city is divided, you will not be able to see many differences between the communities because they are linked by a transport system and a host of other shared services.

Local laws of Brussels
Tipping – which is not customary to tip in restaurants because the bills already include a service charge. Taxi drivers, hairdressers and other services also do not need advice service tips.

Drinking age – the legal drinking age is 16 in any bars but 18 years of age in alcoholic beverages with more than 22% alcohol.

Taxi stands – usually taxis waiting at taxi stands, you will not find many taxis running around waiting for people to flag them. You can wave a taxi if it is over 100 meters from a taxi stand.

Driving – driving rules in Brussels may differ from your country. The rule to turn right of priority, for example, is universal on all roads except those marked with special signs.

Cycling – bike lanes are not as abundant, but they are there. Keep right and at least 1 meter away from parked cars.

The Government Building
Opposite the palace is the “Palace of the Nation” or the Belgian Parliament. During the reconstruction of the royal quarter in 1777, the city authorities decided to build a new building for the Council of Brabant.

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