IT’S ON – after years of complaints about perceived under-spending, Rojales Town Hall promises Olive Press that €600,000 will be spent in Quesada after Christmas.
Finance councillor, Fernando Lorenzo, admitted much work needed to be done and blamed the delay on the serious flooding this autumn.
But he promised the instructure improvements would begin on January 7.
In total, €600,000 will be spent on resurfacing the roads, widening pavements as well as improving parking and lighting.
“It will be the perfect welcome to Quesada,” he told the Olive Press last week.
The move comes after years of claimed neglect by locals, who complained of bad lighting, poor pavements and a lack of events and entertainment. investigation also found problems with overflowing bins and neglected play parks, as well as serious issues on parking.
However, the town hall insists that much of this could be down to the huge number of expats who have failed to register on the Padron.
Figures estimate around 19,000 citizens are NOT officially registered, leading to considerably less national funding.
“Imagine the funding we would have to spend if they all registered,” Lorenzo continued, “We could have more of everything.”
A groundswell of opinion has built up over the last two years, with what many believe to be a bias over public service investment in the Costa Blanca town.
Locals – a large percentage expats – believe Rojales Town Hall has been ignoring their pleas, while spending the vast majority of council cash elsewhere.
An Olive Press investigation this month certainly confirms their claims, with a clear lack of road maintenance, overflowing bins, as well as neglected play parks.
“Parking is a massive issue, and there seems to be very little for kids to do,” said Jo Christian, of Villas Blanca estate agents, “Why does it seem like nothing is being spent on Quesada?”
Another Quesada estate agent, who preferred not to be named, added: “The lack of funding is terrible, especially when you consider the extra thousands that must be coming in from the government, thanks to all the padron registrations by expats.
“We don’t even get a decent fiesta, whereas Rojales seems to have something going on every day and night.”
Kelly Aspbury, at The Treasure Chest, insisted: “All our customers seem to ask about is when the road outside is going to be improved, and where is the extra parking?”
When confronted on the issue, Rojales Councillor for Integration Derek Monks and Finance boss Fernando Lorenzo, admitted they were aware of the claims, but promised that they would soon be rectified.
While they admitted there has been a delay to long-planned works they insisted they would begin again in January.
The problems began, they confirmed, when the roadworks on Quesada’s main thoroughfare, Ave de Las Naciones, were suspended in 2017.
“We found solid rock under the arches at the entrance, which meant we had to start again with plans and costing,” confirmed Lorenzo last week.
“We couldn’t start again in the summer because of the disruption to businesses, and since September we’ve been dealing with the aftermath of the gota fria.”
But he confirmed works would begin again on January 7, next year, the day after the Reyes.
He promised that €600,000 would be spent on resurfacing the roads, widening pavements, improving parking and adding new lighting.
“It will be the perfect welcome to Quesada as you enter the arches,” he promised.
Additional works will include the installation of LED street lighting throughout La Fiesta and improvements to the irrigation channel along Avenida de los Regantes.
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