The plenary session of the Almeria Provincial Council held this Thursday in the Provincial Palace was once again marked by consensus as most of the items on the agenda were approved unanimously or with no votes against. The Corporation has approved important investments that will improve and modernise public spaces, infrastructures and services in all municipalities.
In this line, the deputies have supported the Economic Assistance Plan of Diputación destined to the local entities of the province. This is an initiative through which the Provincial Institution, in full communication with the needs transmitted by the municipalities, responds to the councils to promote local activities and services with these investments.
In this way, the Provincial Council is making 2.2 million euros available to the local councils, funds that the Institution will transfer to the local administrations from the areas of the Presidency, the fight against depopulation and Tourism, Social Welfare, Culture and Cinema, Finance, New Technologies and Housing, and Sports and Youth.
This Economic Assistance Plan aimed at local councils includes the aid that the Provincial Council gives to municipalities with less than 1,000 inhabitants to encourage investment in these towns. The Institution has doubled this aid from 10,000 to 20,000 euros per municipality, with a total investment of 1,040,000 euros which will benefit the 52 small municipalities in the province.
With this investment, the councils of municipalities with smaller populations in the province will be able to finance projects or carry out works to improve infrastructure or municipal supplies such as renovation of supply networks, paving, lighting, etc., or repairs to municipal buildings and public spaces.
The vice-president of the Provincial Council and spokesman for the government team, Fernando Giménez, stressed that “this plan is very successful and an example of institutional collaboration because we coordinate and relate what the local councils ask us to do, as is also determined by the legal system. It responds to the raison d’être of the Provincial Council as an institution and a council of councils”.
In another order of things, the Plenary has unanimously approved a new list of works of Provincial Plans of the current course to modernize public services throughout the geography of Almeria. With today’s new budget item, the Provincial Institution has processed an investment of close to 45 million euros with the aim of increasing and strengthening the services that the province’s local councils provide to the public.
Thanks to these new investments in Gérgal, various urban developments will be carried out; in Mojácar, improvements will be made to various municipal infrastructures and, in La Mojonera, the town’s Centre for the Elderly will be extended.
One of the issues unanimously approved in today’s plenary session was the new distribution of plants for this year’s ‘Plan Savia’ of the Provincial Council. In total, 48 municipalities in the province will receive, at no cost to the councils, 25,245 plants that will beautify and oxygenate public spaces such as parks, gardens and streets of these localities.
The investment made by the Provincial Institution in kind with this year’s ‘Plan Savia’ amounts to 315,000 euros. This investment is in addition to the more than 3.5 million euros worth of more than 245,000 plants that the Provincial Institution has distributed since 2014 with this plan. These include more than 70,000 adult trees that become a valuable Co2 sink. It is estimated that this number of trees counteracts the Co2 generated by 70,000 vehicles driving between 10,000 and 20,000 kilometres a year.
The 48 beneficiary municipalities are: Adra, Alboloduy, Alcontar, Alhabia, Almócita, Arboleas, Armuña de Almanzora, Balanegra, Beires, Benahadux, Bentarique, Berja, Cantoria, Dalías, El Ejido, Enix, Fondón, Fuente Victoria, Gádor, Garrucha, Huércal – Overa, Los Gallardos, Lúcar, Macael, María, Olula de Castro, Olula del Río, Paterna del Río, Pechina, Pulpí, Purchena, Rágol, Santa Cruz de Marchena, Santa Fe de Mondújar, Serón, Sierro, Sorbas, Tabernas, Taberno, Terque, Tíjola, Turre, Turrillas, Urrácal, Vélez-Blanco, Vera, Vícar and Zurgena.
The Plenary has also approved the inclusion of the projects of four new municipalities to opt for funds from the DUS 5,000 Programme in its firm commitment to the Next Generation funds for the improvement of energy efficiency in municipal public buildings and infrastructures. The municipalities whose participation in this programme has been endorsed today are those of Alhabia, Lucainena, Gérgal and Gádor with actions budgeted at 424,000 euros, which are in addition to the more than 9 million euros requested for 78 municipalities in this call, the result of which will be announced later.
The aim of these energy efficiency projects is to enable municipalities with fewer resources to save economic costs and CO2 emissions by installing solar panels and energy storage systems to achieve greater energy efficiency. Diputación manages the documentation and applications for this programme, which smaller councils would not be able to undertake on their own, covering the residents of these towns.
Motion in favour of music bands and associations
The Plenary of the Provincial Council unanimously approved, after accepting an amendment from the Popular Group, a motion in support of the creation of a call for grants to finance music associations and organisations that maintain and promote music bands in the municipalities of the province.
After the debate, the amendment of the Popular Group was accepted, following the recommendation of FEDERBAND, the Andalusian Federation of Music Bands of Almeria, it has been agreed to publish a call for grants to which bands and music associations can apply directly and do not have to do so through the municipalities to avoid a greater burden of administrative procedures.
The President of the Provincial Council explained that “what we intend, following the indications of FEDERBAND, is that the aid should go directly to the bands. It will be done through a public call for applications”.