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Economic help for companies battered by covid-19

foto 2021 economia CConsell de Formentera premiere Alejandra Ferrer, deputy premiere and entrepreneurship chief Ana Juan and economy and finance chief Bartomeu Escandell sat down with Manuel Porras, the director-general of economic promotion, entrepreneurship and social and circular economy for the regional government. The gathering, in which Porras reported on plans to offer a leg-up for Balearic businesses, was also attended by members of the local business community.

Ferrer welcomed Porras’s visit, which both administrations and island business viewed as a chance to work out details and ensure on-the-ground compatibility of government assistance, with attendees taking the opportunity to review Spanish and Balearic decrees on terms of the €855m economic injection for crisis-hit companies in the region.

Porras highlighted newly expanded eligibility criteria that will bring assistance to an additional 10 companies and 26 freelancers on Formentera, expanding the regional tally of aid beneficiaries to 176 companies and more than 300 self-employed workers.

Porras described the help as purpose-oriented and urged all eligible candidates to apply, pointing out disbursements would not be based on order of application submission. “We want the process to be simple”, confided the director-general, saying applicants could even count on early payout. The application period is expected to start by late May or early June, and the first freelancers could receive assistance by the end of next month.

New aid from Consell
President Ferrer said the island’s government and business leaders would closely monitor the Govern’s current proposal and make sure aid from the Consell moving forward addressed any blind spots and was as inclusive as possible. One hundred applications have been received in response to the Consell’s package of €630,000 in assistance for crisis-hit freelancers and small businesses. Payments are due to be issued as early as next week. Ferrer concluded by calling for a new meeting to finalise proposals and modifications with employers’ groups.

7 May 2021
Communications Department
Consell de Formentera

Consell de Formentera extends deadline for taxes and local fees until 1 December

The Formentera Tax Office reports that, as first announced in April and as part of economic relief measures stemming from the pandemic, islanders will benefit from a two-month extension on this year’s payments of taxes and municipal fees. The new deadline is 1 December.

During the second half of September, individuals who have set up direct deposit will have taxes and fees automatically debited from their accounts. However, those that wish to postpone payment can do so by contacting their bank before 15 September and contacting the local headquarters of the Balearic tax office (Agència Tributària de les Illes Balears; C/Eivissa, 9; www.atib.es; tel. 971 321 577) prior to 1 December to avoid additional fees.

8 September 2020
Department of Communications
Consell de Formentera

Consell de Formentera and Govern balear create €440K line of support for local freelancers

The Formentera Department of Economy and Taxes has joined forces with the regional government in Palma to open up lines of support for the island’s productive sector, which department chief Bartomeu Escandell described as “uniquely reliant on self-employed workers—a group that has faced, and continues to face, immense hardship in the economic crisis following Covid-19”.

Four-hundred forty thousand—a quarter of a million from the Consell, €190,000 from the Govern—will go to support Formentera’s freelancers. Of the 1,460 local professionals with “autonomous worker” (autònom) status, 1,100 are registered year-round and the remainder only temporarily. “We’re extremely pleased that the two administrations were able to come together at this critical juncture in support of this particular group”, said Escandell. In the Balearics, local and regional authorities have together promised more than €15 million for a group numbering between eight and ten thousand.

The assistance will be calculated as follows:

1. Two thousand euros for applicants without staff on payroll. Seasonal freelancers will receive €2,500.

2. Two thousand five-hundred euros for applicants with fewer than 3 staff on payroll. Seasonal freelancers will receive €3,000.

3. Three thousand euros for applicants with three or more staff on payroll. Seasonal freelancers will receive €3,500.

Professionals must figure in one of the following categories to be eligible:

a) Individuals who, as a result of emergency orders in the wake of Covid-19, were forced to cease professional activity or reduce it by at least 75% (compared to 2019 figures).

b) Individuals furloughed for force majeur or economic and productive reasons.

c) Seasonal freelancers not included in a) or b) but directly or indirectly affected by Royal Decree 463/2020, later modified by Royal Decree 465/2020.

To apply:

The online application can be completed on the “Ajuts per reiniciar o continuar l’activitat dels autònoms afectats directament per la Covid-19” section of the Govern de les Illes Balears website. Details and a link to the application will be available on the website of the regional office of economic promotion, entrepreneurship and social and circular economy (http://dgpe.caib.es).

The Consell will also offer an information service for self-employed Formentera residents. It can be reached by phoning 971 321 087.


28 May 2020
Department of Communications
Consell de Formentera

In bid to help most vulnerable, Consell to divert €200K of surplus to social welfare initiatives

The Formentera Tax Office reports that the local government will commit 20% of its 2019 surplus to help those made most vulnerable by the crisis in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We are currently liquidating our 2019 budget and hope to be left with a million euros when we’re through”, explained tax office conseller Bartomeu Escandell. “Article 20 of the state of alarm decree gives local authorities the power to unlock 20% of their surplus. This means the Consell will be in the position to allocate roughly €200,000 to benefitting people and protecting our most at-risk groups”.

As Escandell pointed out, the Consell has already announced an extension on the payment deadlines of all municipal fees and taxes. The first of its kind, the urgent economic measure is meant to relieve the symptoms of the crisis among islanders and business owners.

The tax office chief asserted that “as long as the state of alarm remains in effect, not a single bill or collection notice will be issued by any of our temporarily closed-to-the-public services. That means the adult care facility, fitness centre, nurseries and music school, among others. We’ll also be reimbursing islanders who paid for 12 months of service and those who made advance payments”.

Escandell characterised the present situation as “volatile and ever changing”, adding that “having rolled out this first package of economic measures, our government must now progressively adopt more targeted actions so that relief makes its way to the sectors and people that need it, based on newly developing needs and the turns that things take”.

The final objective, he said, is to “soften the economic blow of this public health crisis on regular islanders, not to mention on the local tourism industry and business community”. “To do this successfully”, Escandell concluded, “and for the Consell’s response to be effective and appropriately tailored to Formentera’s unique case, we’ll need to keep our finger on the collective pulse and heed the words of local economic and social stakeholders”.


3 April 2020
Department of Communications
Consell de Formentera

Formentera unveils 2020 budgets

presentacio---pressupostos-2025Formentera’s president, deputy vice president and economy and tax office councillor —Alejandra Ferrer, Ana Juan and Bartomeu Escandell, respectively— met today at local government offices to present the administration’s spending plans for 2020. The Consell de Formentera’s €30.1-million budget is 0.3%, or €90K, smaller than last year’s.

President Ferrer described the budgetary line as “a continuation of previous budgets”, pledging to “use the money to keep pushing policies that can take the island closer to sustainability and people-centred policies”. In fact, Ferrer pointed out that “the current plan is to keep pushing formentera.eco (scheme to regulate incoming vehicles) while at the same time developing sustainable mobility and public transport”.

Estany des Peix and nursery home
According to Ferrer, regulation of Estany des Peix is included in the budgets under the header “preserving emblematic landmarks”. A line item has also been set aside to complete the final stage of construction on the nursery home. Ferrer asserted that the first budget of her term also centred particularly on fomenting civic participation.

The vice-president, for her part, pointed out that the 2020 budgets —the first of the current legislative term— “are the product of efforts on both sides of the Gent per Formentera-PSOE governing team” and were designed “to put people front and centre in policies—particularly as regards social and environmental sustainability”.

Councillor Escandell gave a detailed overview of the 2020 budget plan, underscoring the fact that “the current budget is the Formentera government’s 13th, the 9th that was agreed between GxF and PSOE, and the first to be presented by a woman president of the Consell de Formentera”. The local head of the economy and tax office added “these are realistic spending plans in defence of budgetary estability. We’re spending only as much as we’re taking in, and continuing in the line of zero debt”.

Urban upgrades
Among the investment planned for urban betterment projects are the following: phase two of upgrades on Avinguda Joan Castelló i Guasch in Sant Francesc (€715K), Sant Ferran children’s park (€210K), improvements in the green area in eastern Sant Francesc and skatepark (€550K) and, finally, upgrades in Es Pujols as part of phase two of a works project that will be tendered during the first half of 2020 and is scheduled for completion by year’s end.

Sustainable island
Standouts among the projects related to the island’s overarching model for sustainability include the €650K push to reorganise and regulate moorage at Estany des Peix. The bid to cap and count incoming vehicles on the island will also continue to move forward, as will €350K in public transport upgrades and €130K in organic solid-waste treatment improvements.

Other efforts will include developing executive plans for mobility and waste management.

Patrimony
Money is also envisioned for efforts to recover iconic heritage sites, for example, through the refurbishment of Can Ramon, a historic home that will be dedicated to cultural purposes, and the continuation of the island’s Catalogue of Trails (Catàleg de Camins), not to mention the purchase of valuable heritage sites like Es Campament.

Public Participation
Policies of citizen participation will be renewed as well, as with €325K for the participatory budgeting initiatives of the Consell d’Entitats. The budget even incorporates €325K from the 2019 budget for initiatives chosen last year and still pending execution.

Senior citizens
The officials also emphasised other star initiatives at the presentation, such as €1.1 million for construction in 2020 of the Sant Ferran Escoleta, and €700K to complete the nursery home. Efforts will also be focused on developing local strategies for children and youth.


17 December 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

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