Longyearbyen Community Council

The town hall

Longyearbyen Community Council (Norwegian: Longyearbyen lokalstyre) is the local government for Longyearbyen in Svalbard, Norway. It has many of the same responsibilities of a municipality.[1] It is organized with a 15-member council which since 2011 has been led by Mayor Christin Kristoffersen of the Labour Party.[2] The council's main responsibilities are infrastructure and utilities, including power, land-use and community planning, education from kindergarten to upper secondary level and child welfare. It operates three kindergartens in addition to the 13-grade Longyearbyen School.[3]

The Svalbard Council was established on 1 November 1971. It consisted of 17 non-partisan members which were elected or appointed in three different groups—Store Norske Spitsbergen Kulkompani (SNSK) employees, government employees and others, although the ratio changed several times.[4] Svalbard Samfunnsdrift (SSD), a limited company which was responsible for public infrastructure and services, was established by SNSK on 1 January 1989.[5] Responsibilities included healthcare, the fire department, the kindergarten, roads, garbage disposal, power production, the water and sewer system, the cinema, cultural activities and the library.[6] Ownership was taken over by the Ministry of Trade and Industry on 1 January 1993.[5] During the 1990s, the authorities started a process to "normalize" Longyearbyen by abolishing the company town scheme and introducing a full range of services, a varied economy and local democracy.[7] The Svalbard Council changed its regulations from 1993 and allowed parties to run for election.[6] Longyearbyen Community Council was established in 2002, replacing the Svalbard Council and assimilating SSD.[1]

Elections are typically held in early October, some weeks after Norwegian local elections.[8] The 2023 election was won by the Liberal Party, who was counted to have 49.5% of the votes on the election night,[8] but the election was marred by the disenfranchisement of almost all residents without Norwegian citizenship, estimated to affect one-third of the town's population.[9]


  • Arlov, Thor B. (1994). A short history of Svalbard. Oslo: Norwegian Polar Institute. ISBN 82-90307-55-1.
  • Holm, Kari (1999). Longyearbyen – Svalbard: historisk veiviser (in Norwegian). ISBN 82-992142-4-6.
  1. ^ a b "9 Næringsvirksomhet". St.meld. nr. 22 (2008-2009): Svalbard. Norwegian Ministry of Justice and the Police. 17 April 2009. Retrieved 24 March 2010.
  2. ^ Amundsen, Birger (10 October 2011). "Kvinne valgt av folket". Svalbardposten (in Norwegian). Archived from the original on 12 October 2018. Retrieved 16 March 2012.
  3. ^ "Information for foreign citizens living in Longyearbyen" (PDF). Governor of Svalbard. 15 August 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 April 2019. Retrieved 1 September 2019.
  4. ^ Holm (1999): 134
  5. ^ a b Holm (1999): 137
  6. ^ a b Holm (1999): 136
  7. ^ Arlov (1994): 86
  8. ^ a b "Venstre vant lokalstyrevalget i Longyearbyen". NRK (in Norwegian Bokmål). 9 October 2023. Retrieved 10 October 2023.
  9. ^ "Tine er bekymret for lokaldemokratiet: – Ungdommer som har bodd her hele livet får ikke stemt". NRK (in Norwegian Bokmål). 8 October 2023. Retrieved 10 October 2023.

External links

  • Official website
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