News from Andalucia & Costa del Sol
News Archive In association with
Torremolinos and Málaga row over €17m debt
The debt goes back to 1988 when Torremolinos was a district of the Costa's capital
By Oliver McIntyre
A ROW has broken out between the town halls of Torremolinos and Málaga over a debt of nearly 17 million euros that the Costa del Sol town owes in relation to its secession from the city in 1988. Prior to that date Torremolinos was a district of Málaga.
The debt stems from a bill issued by the city to Torremolinos in 1992 for 10 million euros, for street cleaning and rubbish handling and other costs incurred by the city for a couple of years following the town's secession.
Torremolinos rejected the charges, and Málaga took the issue to court. Málaga won the case and in 2007 the Regional Supreme Court ordered Torremolinos to pay the 10 million euros, plus interest accrued since 1997. An appeal against the ruling was rejected in 2008.
Despite the ruling, Torremolinos has not paid the debt, but to date Málaga town hall has not filed for a court injunction to force the payment.
This week Málaga's mayor, Francisco de la Torre (PP), stated that if Torremolinos will not come to an agreement on paying the debt, the city will have no choice but to file for such an injunction.
Confusion over Mijas Pueblo traffic restrictions
Tough-sentence activist groups upset by government turnaround
By Oliver McIntyre
MIJAS town hall last week moved to quell confusion and discontent among some local residents and businesses over the restriction of traffic in the historic quarter of Mijas Pueblo to residents-only.
The town hall recently installed on-entry signs at key locations to keep out all other vehicles (CDSN last week).
Some residents and businesses in the zone have begun collecting signatures against the measure, which they say is causing complications and could have a negative impact on business. Currently only the no-entry signs are all that blocks entry to the historic quarter, but when the town hall announced the project it said the idea was to eventually install hydraulic bollards that would lower only for the vehicles of local residents and emergency vehicles.
In response to the confusion and concerns, the town hall last week announced it was making a door-to-door distribution of cards, written in Spanish and English, explaining that the traffic restriction "does not affect residents of Mijas Pueblo, Osunillas, Valtocado, La Loma or Media Legua," who "can drive in the historic quarter the same as they have always done".
The councillor for public ways, Juan Carlos González, also clarified that "if a resident of Las Lagunas or La Cala comes to visit a family member or to work in Mijas Pueblo, he or she will also have no trouble driving in the historic quarter".
Mijas bin burning wave continues
Police are investigating whether there is a link between this blaze and four bin fires in Las LagunasBy Oliver McIntyre
RUBBISH bin arsonists have struck again in Mijas with the torching of two containers at the weekend.
Just last week the town hall made a call to the public to watch out for such acts after some 30 rubbish and recycling bins have been burned in the town since the start of this year.
The incident at the weekend happened at 3.40am on Saturday at a set of bins near a construction supply yard in the Osunillas zone outside Mijas Pueblo.
A rubbish bin and a glass recycling bin were totally torched and a paper recycling bin was also damaged, though "the rapid action of the firefighters and local police prevented its destruction," said the town hall.
Health failureBad adminstration to blame for muti million-euro losses to the system
By Tom Cain
A REPORT issued this week by the official auditors (Tribunal de Cuentas) and based on data from the 2009 financial year has indicated that the multimillion-euro losses incurred by the health system in Spain is down to bad administration on the part of the national health system and the various regional authorities.
The report says that the Spanish health system is plagued by administrative failures that have caused the loss of millions of euros with the principal cause being lax administration when dealing with foreign patients.
The auditors said that after revising figures for 2009 they found a large number of administrative and bureaucratic failures that prevented the correct tariffs from being applied, allowed health cards to be issued to foreigners who did not comply with current legislation, the duplication of health cards and a total lack of information technology that gave way to people making up what to charge and a major failure in charging patients countries of origin.
Jail for man who caused deadly coach crash
Nine Finnish tourists were killed in the 2008 drink-drive accident
By Oliver McIntyre
THE 4x4 driver who caused the April 2008 coach crash on the A7 motorway that killed nine Finnish tourists injured 27 people has been sentenced to three and a half years in prison.
Málaga's number nine penal court found that Jesús G.R., now 31, was driving at over 150 kph while under the influence of alcohol in wet conditions when he lost control of his vehicle on a curve. His vehicle hit the left-hand guardrail and then rebounded back into the roadway, smashing into the coach, which overturned and was impaled by a section of metal guardrail.
TThe speed limit at the site of the accident, near the Benalmádena-Torremolinos border, is 120 kph.
Nine of the Finnish tourists on the bus were killed, including one minor, while another 25 were injured. The coach driver and a passenger riding in the 4x4 were also injured.
The driver of the 4x4 tested at 0.49 l/mg for alcohol, double the legal limit.
Correos to sack 2,000 workers
By Oliver McIntyre
Post office says move is necessary in the face of decreased demand
CORREOS is to cut some 2,000 jobs as part of an "absolutely necessary" adjustment to the drop in demand for postal services, which is expected to see post office revenues plunge by 12 per cent to 1.79 billion euros this year, announced officials last week.
The falloff in mail revenues is due to several factors including fewer electoral processes throughout the country this year, the reduction in billing by electric companies (which have gone back to bi-monthly rather than monthly billing), and a general drop in demand for postal deliveries, explained Correos chief Javier Cuesta during an appearance before the congressional budget commission.
The job cuts programme - which Sr Cuesta said has been agreed with unions - will be carried out via redundancy or early retirement incentive packages, or, in some cases, the transfer of Correos workers to other government jobs.
Correos expects to post a gross loss of 166.5 million euros this year, compared to three million euros in 2011.