The Provincial Parties
Reflecting the federal structure of the Austrian Federal Republic, each of the nine provinces has its own FPÖ provincial party. According to the FPÖ’s statutes, the provincial parties are organs of the federal party, yet financially and organisationally independent of it. They are headed by a provincial party chairman, or provincial party chairwoman.
All provincial parties have an independent legal personality and are entitled to have their own statutes. The latter must be substantively congruent with the FPÖ’s federal statutes, however. Organisationally, a provincial party is made up of district parties (the boundaries of which align with state administrative districts and cities with their own statutes), as well as individual local groups at municipal level. Furthermore, the most significant organ of a provincial party is its provincial party conference. The latter’s competences include the election of the provincial party chairman or chairwoman. The provincial party conference also appoints the provincial party executive, which is responsible for the direct management of provincial party business.
FPÖ membership is a matter for the provincial parties
One of the crucial mechanisms for nationwide co-ordination between the individual provincial parties is the federal party executive, a federal-level management body in which all nine provincial party chairpersons are represented and each has a vote. Also of significance is the chairpersons conference, a consultative body made up of the federal party chairperson and the provincial party chairpersons.
The provincial parties are also responsible for FPÖ membership matters. Where a person’s main residence is located determines which provincial party decides on their admission as a party member, and the respective provincial party is also responsible for membership administration matters – including for membership fees. Accordingly, there is no provision for separate federal and provincial party membership.