Logroño, (EFE).- The plenary session of the Logroño City Council has approved this Tuesday the municipal budget for 2023 with the votes in favor of PSOE, Unidas Podemos and the non-attached councillors, Javier Garijo and Marisa Bermejo, and against the PP, Ciudadanos (Cs) and the Rioja Party (PR+), whose councilor, Rubén Antoñanzas, is part of the local government team.
The municipal budget, which will come into force at the end of March, amounts to 193.26 million euros -plus almost 12 million for the Logroño Deporte entity- which represents an increase of 1.72 percent compared to the year of 2022, has specified the Councilor for Economy and Finance, Esmeralda Campos.
He has assured that it is a “social, investment budget that promotes the creation of wealth in the city, maintains public services and increases social benefits.”
In addition, it has indicated that “it allows to consolidate the great transformations that this mandate is carrying out in areas such as digital transformation, sustainability, mobility and the improvement of the Historic Center”.
The mayor of Logroño, Pablo Hermoso de Mendoza, has highlighted that this budget meets its objective for this legislature, to “create new economic opportunities, grow in the social, cultural and educational fields and take care of people, something that the three political groups (PSOE, UP and PR+) that make up the government team”.
Delay in adjusting costs
He has justified the delay in the approval of the budget in “the situation of growth in energy prices, how inflation would be to adjust some contracts, the increase in financial costs due to the rise in interest rates and the final realization of the salary increase of the civil servants in chapter 1”, which forced to “adjust” all the items.
Hermoso de Mendoza has stressed that his government team “will continue to govern, before and after the elections” and, although he has accepted “the criticism” of his partners in the tripartite, UP and Antoñanzas, he has considered that “they have most of the issues they have raised.”
He has insisted that the dialogue with his partners is “permanent”, but he has qualified that “another thing is that, when making decisions, everyone does not feel happy enough”.
The mayor of the capital of La Rioja has assured that he feels “very satisfied” for having obtained European financing, not only for urban remodeling works such as Open Streets, but also for tourist and commercial projects.
“In the next elections (the citizens) will decide what it means to be from Logroño: to be asleep, standing still, immobile and that nothing happens, or if it means having the will, the desire and the courage to push forward, facing all the challenges”, has concluded.
I vote against the PR+
The UP spokeswoman, Amaia Castro, has claimed the “imprint” that her formation has left in the city this legislature: by putting Logroño at the forefront of climate and ecological challenges, being a leader in women’s rights and improving the life of the people.
Castro has also highlighted all the work carried out by the Department of the Environment and has censured that the right lacks a project for the city and is “anchored in destroying the public, paralysis and immobility” and has encouraged Antoñanzas to “pursue the mayor” to get his proposals approved.
For his part, the regionalist Antoñanzas has justified his vote against the fact that the amendments he presented to the budget, which barely amounted to 1.7 million, have not been included, but he has also criticized the “lack of dialogue” of the mayor, who prefers to rely on in the two “default” councilors, and their lack of interest in the city’s neighborhoods.
“In PR+ we are loyal, but we are not servile. We owe ourselves to our commitments and to the mandates of this plenary session, such as the construction of the Los Lirios pedestrian walkway, which we are going to continue defending for the people of Logroño ”, he stressed.
From the opposition, the popular spokesman, Conrado Escobar, has stressed that, “while they raise taxes on Logroños, severe poverty has increased 80%, the shopping basket goes up and up, they are not capable of promoting a single public housing ” for which reason he has asked himself “where is his social commitment”.
In his opinion, the biggest political failure of this legislature is not having achieved the title of Ciudad Verde or being able to bid for the management of green areas.
He has joked that the tripartite “brings indifference and arrogance to the people of Logroño, but also among themselves: Antoñanzas’ intervention seems like a Shakira song and Castro is chasing the mayor.”
Finally, the Cs spokesman, Ignacio Tricio, has agreed with Antoñanzas on the “lack of dialogue” of the Government team, for refusing to negotiate the seven amendments of the orange formation, worth 5 million euros, but has pointed out that His proposals rejected in 2022 have been included this year. EFE