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Thursday, November 27, 2014

Thursday 27th November

Not doing too well this week as Andreas had taken the last of his holidays for this year during this week.

Firstly I understand that Nila are to recommence work on the next stretch of the motorway from Cucador to Balabona within 2 months. You may have noticed their surveyors working around the area. The route is an almost straight line from the current end of the dual carriageway across the rambla down to Balabona running to the east of Palaces.

Secondly the Neighbourhood Watch in Spain Zurgena branch are to hold their A.G.M. next Monday evening in  the pretty theatre in Zurgena at 6.0pm (the theatre is just up the left hand road off the old square in the village and has comfortable seating for 100 persons. To make it more informative we have arranged for kim Clark (UK Benefits in Spain) and Anthonio Garcia (Town Hall Caritas) to give short talks about benefits, health and social services in Spain.

I have again shown a group from The Anglican church in Almeria around the village church in Los Llanos del Peral and subsequent to that visit, they are keen to progress the possibility of using the church for regular Sunday services (with the hope that if permission is given they could hold a carol service this Xmas, though that may be cutting it fine). I have sent our councillor for culture a request for this permission and will post the outcome. I am hopeful. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

IBI reminder

Just a quick reminder that the date for final payment of IBI bills for this year (2014) is this Thursday 20th November. So if you have had a bill for this financial year for IBI if it not paid by the 20th November it will attract a penalty charge. If you have not received one for previous years or for 2014 then that is fine but if you are unsure, as to whether one may have been issued then let me know so that I can check and let you know in time.

It looks like we may start to have church services in Los Llanos del Peral in the near future. The Reverend Pauline Williams, Priest in Charge of the Anglican Chaplaincy, Costa Almeria & Costa Calida approached me after the RBL service last week with a view to trying to identify premises which would be suitable. Initially I suggested the Renfe but discovered that that building is to frequently used for other functions at weekends. We then considered the little church in Los LLanos and she thinks that would be ideal. The people from th church are to visit again next week and then, as long as I can get permission from the TH they could start services. Will keep you posted.

Lastly still not had any volunteers (preferably ladies) to assist Anthonia with sorting out the english books for the library. If you or anyone you know would like to assist with this please get in touch. The sooner we get it done he sooner we can start to use it.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

RBL Remembrance Day, Xmas Fair, Plea for Marquee and List of Council names

Firstly my wife and I, together with Candido and Noelia, attended the annual RBL Remembrance Day service in the Renfe today and there was an impressive turn out. It seems that as each year passes more people attend.

Whilst there I was informed that the RBL are having their annual Xmas market in the Renfe building on Saturday 22nd November at 1100 until 1400. They have lots of stalls booked for the day so it should be a great market. Oh and I am also informed that Santa will be there.

The organisers of the Xmas fair have a plea for a large marquee, as there have more stalls, than there is room to accomodate them, in the Renfe building. So if you or anyone you know has a large Marquee, they could use, please let me know and I will pass the message on.

A friend of mine suggested that it would be useful if I were to list the names of the main people in the Town Hall for reference as he feels that I often use names expecting people to know who I am talking about so here goes.

The Mayor is Luis Garcia Diaz, the deputy mayoress is Noelia Garcia Jimenez and she is also the councillor for culture, sports and the arts. The other councillors are Salvadore issues relating to property and IBI, Ana social issues, Sampo tourism issues and Candido of course Public Works. Within the Town Hall the full time employees are Andreas, our bilingual help desk person, Juanjo primarily responsible for the Padron and associated issues, Isa (the chief clerk) and her assistant is Maribel. Upstairs is the architect Luis Sendra Sanchez (husband of the other Ana, the councillor who has been off having just had their first child). Also upstairs there is the main man of the employed staff Manolo, our town hall secretary. Foreman of the Town Hall workers is Paco. I hope this helps. 

Friday, November 7, 2014

Friday 7th November and RBL Service next Tuesday

Had a good long chatter with Candido this morning re outstanding Public Works issues.

He informed me about the following,

The trees in the area of Jardines de Almanzora 2 will get a strimming next week.

The work to repair Calle Finlandia and others affected by the storm should start in December.

The hold up with the repairs to the street lights has been due to us running out of street light bulbs. These should be back in stock in the next couple of weeks.

The switching on of the new street lights should take place during December/January.

The repairs/cleaning of various streets, already reported, including Calle Carl Von Linneo and the road between Los Llanos and Los Cabreras, should get undertaken in a few weeks. The reason for the delay in doing a lot of this stuff is due to the financial situation, as budgets have not been adhered to, with a consequence being that funds for normal maintenance have been hit!

There are certain streets such as Calle Irlanda and Calle Miguel Hernandez which were surfaced during the works earlier this year which show signs of deterioration due to the sub soil being washed away. This is something that we are hoping to remedy but again was due to a shortage of funds to be able to install pipework, prior to the road surfacing. It was a question of having the surface done or not at that time and the decision was that it would work out cheaper to get them done as part of those works at that time. Regarding Calle Irlanda it is also part of another project to install the pipework to run under this road when other similar works are to be undertaken in December/January.

The bowling green contract with Nila is almost signed off (at long last) and it is hoped that we can then agree a process to hand the green over to a company to complete the infrastructure and run the club. Probably before the end of the year, in the hope that whoever takes it over, can begin opening the green early in the new year.  

We agreed to get the new street plans picked up next week and installed.

Candido explained that the reason that the work to complete the repairs to the dipuradora for Cuesta de los Pinos took over 3 weeks was due to the fact that they discovered that there was a natural water spring underneath the works and they had to install a pipework system to take this water away down the rambla from the works. It is perhaps worthy of mentioning that the new pipework to bring the waste water from Los Llanos del Peral down to this treatment plant should commence in the New Year and this should also alleviate the problem with the standing waste at the bottom of Calle Abderraman 3 and other parts of Los Llanos.

We also had a lengthy discussion about planning for next years local elections due to be held in May. Candido reminded me that we should be looking at involving, anyone from the expat community, who would like to get involved, particularly ladies! So if you, or anyone you know, would consider helping serve their community by getting involved please give it some serious thought. Next years election, as always, will decide the route the Town Hall takes over the next four years. It is my intention to take  a much less involved role, so I really hope some of you will consider serving otherwise we may have no real representation in the next administration. Should you wish to know more or to express an interest please drop me an email or give me a ring

Lastly a reminder to all our community of the Royal British Legions service to be held this year in the Renfe building and is is requested that those attending to please be in their seats by 1030am on Tuesday the 11th November. The Town Hall has obtained, prepared and installed a new memorial marble plinth in the garden opposite the Renfe as a focus for our remembrances.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Thursday 6th November

Spent some time at the TH this morning and got a few things sorted.

Firstly the dipuradora work for Cuesta de los Pinos is complete and working correctly. At last!

Secondly the new marble stone for the RBL is waiting cleaning and polishing. Paco said he hoped to get this finished this week. I told him we desperately wanted it done before the 10th!

Regarding the library in Zurgena I poke with Noelia and got the distinct impression that she was snowed under with english books and did not know where to start. The lady who is sorting the library stock out is Anthonia and I asked Noelia whether, if I could get a volunteer from  the expat community to assist her this would help get the library up and running and she confirmed that it would be a great help. So if you fancy giving Anthonia a helping hand to organise and record the english books for th library please let me know and I can put you in touch with Anthonia.

The new street plans for the pool bar area and Los Llanos are ready for collection from the manufacturer so I will chase up next week the collection and installation of these signs.

There has been a thread on Facebook about the wonderful metal sculptures at the roadside between Los Llanos and Limaria in the area of Los Cabreras. In case you were interested we have discovered that the maker of these sculptures is a local man who does them as a hobby and despite our requests he does not have time to take commissions to make others. It is just a part time hobby of his until he retires in 5 years time!

Some people had asked whether the IBI bills will only be available from the TH next year. This is not at the moment the case. Although we are trying to see if we can manage the issue of bills etc ourselves as this would save us a lot of money which we have to pay to the Diputacion for them to manage. If that does happen then  the TH would be the only authority with the details but at the moment that looks unlikely so as it stands bills will be issued from Diputacion as usual next year.

Regarding the Spanish classes being run on behalf of the TH I need to get clarification from someone on the course as to times and costs, as this is set by the teacher. Will update when I know.

I was unable to speak with Candido re Public Works issues but should be able to see him tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Fires and Banks

I am advised that people can now burn rubbish in their gardens however, if you live nearer than 400m from a mountain you need a licence. The advice, as always, is you should check with the TH anyway, if you wish to burn stuff. The licence, if you need one, normally lasts 2-3 months. You need to get that from the TH. It is free but usually last for about 2 or 3 months.

I have been informed by some of you that some of the banks do not require your confirmation of identify as referred to in a previous post. This is strange as it was circulated widely as fact and we found it to be the case for our account with Banco Sabadell. Maybe different banks are interpreting it differently!