Alburquerque (Badajoz) (EFE) who is elected faces a sentence that requires him to pay a fine of 1,000 euros every 20 days.
“No one will want to be mayor,” predicted this Tuesday the president of the Provincial Council of Badajoz, Miguel Ángel Gallardo, whose entity, given “the chaotic situation of the consistory – he said – as a consequence of a disastrous and irresponsible management” over many years, has proposed to put the money, about 40,000 euros, to solve the problem of judicial litigation.
A ruling by the Superior Court of Justice of Extremadura (TSJEx), in the context of a dispute initiated by a neighbor and which has been going on for more than 15 years, obliges the City Council to repair a property whose cost is 40,000 euros.
As the consistory does not have cash, the TSJEx ruled that the person who holds the position of mayor must pay a fine of 1,000 euros every 20 days. This charge was the trigger for the until recently mayor of the municipality, Manuel Gutiérrez (Independientes Por Alburquerque), to announce his resignation.
The previous mayor worked without pay.
When Gutiérrez became Mayor in May of last year, he found an economic photograph of a debt of about 15 million euros, triple the budget for a single year, since its negative remainder was almost two million euros, around of six million euros of financial debt and just over 4.5 million euros in non-payments to Social Security, in addition to a history of non-payments to workers.
As an example of the situation, for eight months of 2022 there was no Local Police in the municipality, with just over 5,300 inhabitants, given the impossibility of the consistory to attend to the working conditions of the agents.
It is true that the mayor, who did not receive any salary, began payment agreements with the Treasury and Social Security, and some payments to suppliers and workers were resumed, but the housing judgment filled the camel’s back. “I cannot harm my personal assets or that of my family,” said Gutiérrez in his resignation.
If there are no candidates, the Badajoz Provincial Council could take over the management of the City Council
The command rod passed on on January 27 to the socialist Juan Carlos Prieto (PSOE), who, days after assuming office, received the offer of the Badajoz Provincial Council to assume the cost of the 40,000 euros of the sentence.
“Why did you have to wait for a socialist mayor to reach the Mayor’s Office for the Provincial Council to lend a hand?” they ask from the PP. There has also been movement in the ranks of the PSOE, as one of the three mayors, Jesús Martín Chaves, announced this week that he was leaving the party.
In the event that no one stands as a candidate in the extraordinary plenary session this Thursday, a management commission supervised by the Badajoz Provincial Council could take over the management of the City Council until the elections on May 28.
If someone finally takes the step, it would be the third mayor of this legislature, which began with the socialist Marisa Murillo. Her criticism of her management, especially due to the debt, forced the PSOE itself to expel her from it. She and the rest of the councilors of the local government, with the exception of Prieto, became non-attached and others left. In May 2022, the councilors of IPAL and the PSOE presented a motion of no confidence in Murillo, which gave way to Gutiérrez.