Saturday 21st August 2021 – CARLOS LÓPEZ with Mike Smith
Rosa Cardona, the PP spokesperson in Xàbia Council, has reacted to the installation of signs across La Pla by the Department of Agriculture, advising people to limit their speed and take responsibility not to damage or remove other people’s products and property.
Cardona, who is a representative on the Rural Council and whose family has several fields in the zone, explained to XAD that it is a “first step” in the long road that the municipal department must follow since, historically, municipal policy has paid little or no attention to the agricultural sector in the town. Therefore, it isn’t surprising that more and more fields are being abandoned by the farmers themselves.
There was some general surprise yesterday when the local government issued a press release from the Department of Agriculture, now under the responsible of Tourism councillor Toni Miragall, who initially stepped in to cover the position due to Marta Bañuls being on maternity leave but has now assumed responsibility on a permanent basis since his department has been working with the sector throughout the year.
In fact, it as Miragall who call one of the last meeting of the Municipal Agrarian Council, the advisory body which maintains a relationship between the local council and farmers, during which the measures and claims of this sector are debated and put on the table.
In her statement on her social media, Cardona explained that the council now has to work on an integral water cycle, a project that has been discussed on numerous occasions during past legislatures but about which nothing has been done. She said that farmers need water to irrigate, especially during times when the wells are dry due to the ongoing drought, since it doesn’t rain much in the municipality and when it does, it does so intensely that the water just runs off the land.
She claimed than when the PP was in charge of the Generalitat Valenciana, José Chulvi called for an integral water cycle day after day, but now he says nothing or comes out with some excuse and diverts the matter. She implored on him to get serious about the matter.
The PP representative also asked that the local council take the maintenance of the roads that run across La Pla more seriously, adding that there are subsidies available from the Provincial Council to carry out this task. She said that these roads must be in a perfect condition so that lorries are able to access the area during harvest time.
She also demanded a great police presence in the zone to prevent thefts from the fields and insisted that the local government must develop a municipal budget to be able to create more vacancies in the Local Police and increase the number of officers available.
Cardona also suggested that the local council should promote new courses for farmers and develop an initiative in which the fields could be worked through a land bank, both programmes that have been hugely successful in neighbouring towns. Farmers could also be helped in dealing with existing pests which forces them to destroy seedlings.
She also asked the local council to provide farmers with a waste disposal service for those who can’t burn in their fields due to risk of fire or because they are surrounded by homes.