- CLARO makes Financial Autonomy for Orihuela Costa its number one priority
C.L.A.R.O has made Financial Autonomy for Orihuela Costa its top priority. After years of trying in vain to influence the Council in Orihuela to allocate appropriate resources for the inhabitants of Orihuela Costa C.L.A.R.O has finally decided that the only way forward is to gain Financial Autonomy, or as it is called in Spanish, “Local Minor Equity”. Over the coming months look out for information on “Local Minor Equity” and what it will mean for all the residents living on the neglected Orihuela Costa.
It is a well known fact that Orihuela Costa contributes the largest percentage to the finances of Orihuela, currently we pay 53 million Euros towards the total budget of 83 Million Euros, in other words 63.85% of the total budget. The spending on all the services provided on the coast amount to 15 million Euros, or 18.07%, thus Orihuela Costa subsidises the services enjoyed by the residents of Orihuela city and the villages to the tune of 38 million Euros!
Although Orihuela Costa pays the lion share of the budget for the total Orihuela Municipality it does not enjoy the same level of services provided to the inhabitants of Orihuela City or even the small towns. The Mayor of Orihuela recently announced his proposals for capital spending, which amounted to 48 million Euros, with over a million going to complete the Casa de Cultura for the tiny town of La Aparecida that only has an official population of 526!
How can this be justified especially when over a million Euros has already been spent on this building! The total cost of providing this excellent facility for a town with less than 1000 people will be 2.3 million Euros! However, Orihuela Costa that has well over 30,000 people on the Padron has no Casa de Cultura and there are no plan, no budget allocation for the coming year and further there is no intention to even provide one in the future.
In every area of expected public services Orihuela Costa fails to receive its due consideration. There is no ambulance based on the coast; this lack has led to deaths, not only on the beach, but at such important facilities as the Sports Centre when the ambulance arrived an hour after a man playing walking football suffered and died from a heart attack. The long awaited Emergency Services Centre is still awaiting completion after 9 years! This is a disgrace and puts everyone’s life at risk!
There are no proper library services, but the City of Orihuela has 3 and during school examination times some of these stay open until midnight to allow student adequate study resources. Inadequate street cleaning and rubbish collection, neglect of parks and open spaces, roads and footpaths needing maintenance and full of pot holes that are dangerous to all road users; the list of neglect of the coast goes on and on.
Please join C.L.A.R.O.’S campaign for “Local Minor Equity” or as we say in English, Financial Autonomy. This would mean that the budget for the coast would increase from the measly 15 million Euros to 40 million Euros. Just think of how services for every sector of the community would benefit, at last we could provide services for pre-schoolers, youth services, the disabled and older people.
The coast could have the same level of cleanliness and beautiful parks as enjoyed by the residents of Orihuela, decent Christmas decorations and be able to celebrate important Spanish fiestas. In fact every aspect of public services would see a substantial improvement. These are services we are paying for but presently not receiving!