Frame VII  The land is managed

In the beginning, the management of the Noordoostpolder was done by the Board of the Wieringermeer. From 1935, Mr. S. Smeding was the only managing director in this organization. The Board did not only have to develop and execute the Zuiderzee Works, but the director also controlled which polders that were drained according to the Zuiderzee Law. A special title was created for this function, namely: the ‘landdrost’ (Dutch and English have the same word, in a historical context we would use the word bailiff).

The combination of project developer and chairman of the Board was an odd one. It is also worth noting that the landdrost did not work in a team, like how a mayor is accompanied by aldermen, and a democratically chosen body did not monitor him. From 1946; however, a committee of polder inhabitants assisted the landdrost. From 1951, this Polder committee could be chosen by the people and made its meetings public.

The Municipality of the Noordoostpolder

This made the Noordoostpolder look somewhat more like a real, democratic municipality. Nevertheless, it was not until 1962 that we can speak of it as a real municipality. The Noordoostpolder had already been drained and inhabited for 20 years by that point. The Board had already lost some of its power by that time. This transition to limited power, more or less coincided with the departure of landdrost, Smeding, and the arrival of his successor, A.P. Minderhoud, in 1954.

Town Hall Noordoostpolder in EmmeloordTown Hall Noordoostpolder in Emmeloord

Province and Conservancy

When the municipality of the Noordoostpolder was created, it became part of the province of Overijssel. In 1986, when the Flevopolders had enough inhabitants, the Noordoostpolder became part the province of Flevoland, which was according to plan since the start of the Zuiderzee Works. In the same year, the newly formed District Water Board Noordoostpolder started managing all of the water in the Noordoostpolder. Until 1986, the water management in the Noordoostpolder had been the responsibility of Dienst Zuiderzee works, part of the Department of Public Works. District Water Board Noordoostpolder then merged with Waterschap Fleverwaard and became Waterschap Zuiderzeeland in the year 2000.  

Province Hall Flevoland in Lelystad.Province Hall Flevoland in Lelystad.