the mayor of Estepona, Jose Maria Garcia Urbano, has insisted this Tuesday on the need to have a national plan against asian algae. In this sense, the also vice president of the Spanish Federation of Municipalities and Provinces (FEMP) has proposed in the governing board of said body that the central government be urged to implement a national plan to help the coastal municipalities affected by the “invasion of the Asian seaweed.
The proposal has been approved so the FEMP will request the Executive to financially support the municipalities affected by the extra costs they are assuming to deal with the presence of this invasive species on their coasts.
García Urbano has stated that local administrations cannot pay with their own resources for the removal and treatment of this wasteor eradicate this serious problem, which is why it has reiterated the need for state aid to be granted.
In this regard, it has pointed out that in the case of Estepona They are collected 20 tons of algae daily“which has originated important technical and economic efforts for the removal and treatment of this residue”.
Specifically, the Consistory has had to allocate an additional economic item to deal with these tasks, which represent, this year, an additional cost of one million euros. Likewise, it has reiterated that the presence of this invasive algae on the coast has become “in a threat to the image of our beaches and to tourisma strategic economic sector on the Costa del Sol and in the country”.
On the other hand, the councilor and vice president of the FEMP has described the political course as “disappointing” in the face of the “constant slights” of the Government of Pedro Sánchez to local entities. In his speech at the meeting of the governing board, García Urbano denounced that “the present cannot cause us to forget of what we have been demanding since the start of the pandemic”.
Thus, he referred to “negative impact” that it is having in the municipal accounts, “not only the extraordinary expenses caused as a result of the pandemic, and for which the Executive has not given a single euro to the municipalities and councils; but also other issues such as the Constitutional Court ruling on the surplus value or the increase in the price of energy and materials that is generating very important treasury tensions for many local entities”.
For this reason, the mayor has asserted that “the local financing model is not sustainable” and has asked “that it be reconsidered because the municipal budget chewing gum cannot be stretched any further”. At the same time, it has reiterated the need for the National Commission of Local Administration (CNAL) to be convened to debate all the issues that are pending resolve and that they are “financially drowning municipalities and provinces”.
García Urbano has also urged the FEMP to also carry out a study of how the “exaggerated” increase in the energy bill is affecting local treasuriesan issue that affects families “and that, of course, also affects public services, such as public lighting”.