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S’Estufador fire declared extinguished at 4.17am

foto-bombers-formenterav2The Consell de Formentera fire brigade was deployed in response to a fire that began last night at approximately 10.20pm in the S’Estufador area of La Mola. The municipal crew gave support to the Balearic forestry service (Ibanat) and Civil Protection corps already engaged in fighting the flames. Guardia Civil and local police were also on the scene along with the members of the emergency operational unit, part of the Balearic public administrations ministry.

The blaze scorched 0.14 hectares of pine forest which Josep Marí, Formentera’s interior councillor, described as “difficult to access”, remarking that crew’s response had been made “even more complicated given high proportion of homes in remote locations”. According to the councillor: “Luckily firefighters brought the fire under control fast, and they did it, despite strong winds, thanks to the considerable response that was deployed”. Marí saluted the efforts of emergency workers and, in particular, volunteers.

Flames were declared extinguished at 4.17am, with subsequent showers helping to moisten the area. As a preventive measure, 21 individuals were evacuated from the 14 homes in the affected area. The blaze was said to be stable by 2.00pm yesterday; that status was updated to “controlled” by 4.47pm. The Guardia Civil has opened an investigation into the causes behind the fire.


21 October 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Lifeguard drill

simulacre-socorrisme--1-1Consell de Formentera lifeguards took part in a simulated rescue on Ses Illetes beach today. The simulation involved the rescue of two individuals aboard a boat on fire at sea; one of the pair required CPR. The head of the lifeguard and rescue service of the Consell de Formentera, Marco Lage, described the exercise, customary when the work flow slows at season’s end, as a fantastic addition to lifeguards’ training.


18 October 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Consell chief sits down with head of Balearic parliament

foto-reunio-presparl-2019-12President Alejandra Ferrer met today at 11.00am with Parlament chairman Vicenç Thomàs in the offices of the Consell de Formentera. Ferrer welcomed the official visit, calling it “a way to bring the parliament and Formentera together” and affirming “that’s important for our local government and it’s important for our people, too”.

The pair discussed an array of subjects at the gathering, including, said Ferrer, “the need to work towards sustainability, a common goal for the four islands and an area where Formentera has made real progress. That’s been thanks in part to last term’s parliamentary passing of legislation on Formentera’s environmental and financial sustainability”.

A priority for the present legislative term will be to push through the so-called “law of the Consells” (llei de Consells), which President Ferrer called “fundamental for the Consell de Formentera, especially given our unique role as combined island council and town hall”.

Ferrer also highlighted the General Committee on the Island Councils (Commissió General de Consells Insulars), created at the close of last legislative term to build cooperation between the island councils and parliament. The president described the ambition as “a key part of advocating for the the special features of each island—especially crucial in our case because we’ve only got one representative at Parlament”.

Ferrer also voiced hopes that a new run of committees be convened to bring islanders in on discussing issues specifically relevant to Formentera. Mr Thomàs confirmed plans within Parlament to continue on the same course as last term and keep finding ways to connect the individual islands with the parliamentary body.

Senator for Formentera

Thomàs also spoke about a draft bill, tabled last term by Gent per Formentera and PSOE, to put to rights the Constitution so it reflects Formentera’s right to its own senator.

“On the parliamentary side of things the work is done”, underscored Thomàs, who said the challenge now lay with Congress, and the three Balearic congressional delegates’ role in ensuring the issue is addressed in Madrid: “In my mind it’s a good thing if we’re frank with ourselves and recognise that the legislation puts Formentera in a position to, at some point in the future, have its own senator”.


4 October 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Drawing to determine polling station attendants for 1 November

ple-16-octubre1A special full-house assembly was called today to determine the list of individuals who will assist voters as they cast their ballots in the general elections scheduled for 10 November 2019.

In a process conducted with the help of a computer application, 81 residents of Formentera were flagged as candidates for the island’s nine voting stations, where each “electoral table” must have a chairperson, two spokespeople and two alternates listed. There will be five stations at CP Mestre Lluís Andreu in Sant Francesc, three at CP Sant Ferran and one at La Mola’s primary school. A total of 7,568 islanders will have a chance to cast their ballots in the election: 7,283 are included on the Spanish registry of voters living in Spain (CER) and the other 285 are on the Spanish registry of overseas voters (CERA).

The day’s assembly also came with the announcement that Sa Unió councillor Anna Negre will step down from her position as councillor.

16 October 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Consell de Formentera green-lights wholesale elimination of single-use plastics in government buildings

foto ple oct 2019 2Members of the Consell de Formentera gathered today for the local government's full-house assembly for the month of September. The gathering brought approval for “plastic-free Consell de Formentera”, a pioneer measure set for implementation across government offices and buildings. Backed by the Consell's environment office, the proposal envisions giving staff and visitors of government buildings the means to stop using single-use plastics.

Environment chief Antonio J Sanz said government buildings would be equipped with some twenty water fountains and government employees and visitors would be provided bottles, like those seen at today's assembly. Sanz pointed out that legislation in Europe, Spain and the Balearics would be on the government's side as Formentera took what he called “a path-treading step forward”. “That means getting the buy-in of islanders as well”, he added, “so that they use the fountains when visiting Consell buildings”.

The governing team will encourage employees of the Consell to progressively begin using equipment that's available round the workplace, not to mention to nix single-use plastics in their individual work spaces. The government will also work with organisations and schools to promote measures aimed at doing away with single-use plastics in those places as well.

Maritime transport ordinances
Assembly members came together in support of a proposal to urge the Govern balear to urgently pass a decree required for legislation on maritime transport in the Balearic Islands. In their statement, council members called on the regional government to “seek the full consensus and backing of Formentera's local council as the Govern strives for a decree that safeguards the environment and serves the general public”.

Reasoning that the harbour in La Savina is the only point of entry and exit on the island, mobility councillor Rafa González described the adoption of such a decree “a priority, because it affects all of Formentera”. He pointed to key areas like guaranteeing the first and last ferry of daily service, avoiding overlapping departure times and resolving the issue of the so-called “maritime excursions”.

Assembly members also opted to include in their communication with the regional government a technical report highlighting cases in which nitrogen dioxide emissions exceeded the legal limit, occasionally by as much as two-fold. González said the data offered yet more proof of the urgency of the decree—“so we can avoid repeat cases of pollution, knock-on effects on the environment and risks to human health...this is about protecting islanders' best interests”.

Additional proposals
Another proposal to garner cross-party support was a measure calling on Abaqua to urgently relocate a new wastewater pump station originally included in a planned works project for Es Pujols town centre. Infrastructure chief Josep Marí advocated “an installation that meets the needs of this tourism-centred town and is conducive to better maintenance”. A deal between the Consell and Balearic Port Authority (APB) on prevention, fire-fighting and civil defence was also passed unanimously.

Backing was also secured for a proposal to urge the Balearic government to keep its promise to accommodate more zero- to three-year-olds in public schools, increase assistance for school meals and boost school attendance among children of at-risk families. The goal, according to assembly members, is to have every child attending school and making early-childhood education totally cost free. The same proposed statement urges the central government to “change laws that currently emphasise mere attendance to reflect the educational importance of the zero-to-three years”.

Lastly, the GxF-PSOE governing team passed a transactional measure brought by Sa Unió  to ensure the 75% discount on air and sea travel in the Balearics is kept intact in government spending and the Special Register of Ships and Transport Firms (Registro Especial de Buques y Empresas Navieras; REB). Authors of the proposal also called for the establishment of a special observatory to obstruct abusive price increases at the hands of airlines. The proposal passed with the support of the GxF-PSOE governing team, despite Sa Unió abstention.


27 September 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

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