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Formentera’s craft workers vote for group rep tomorrow

Mercat Mola PremsaThe Formentera Council’s department of trade has set tomorrow 18 November as the date for local card-holding artisans select a new representative. Three have come forward as candidates: Hernan Fernández, Cristina Chapuis and Àngel Berenguer. The poll will be open from ten in the morning till one midday in the Council’s office of the department of culture. The winning individual will serve a four-year term on the island craft workers advisory committee, an arm of the local administration. All of Formentera’s 54 card-holding artisans and 9 accredited master artisans may exercise their right to vote.

Formentera combines fitness and family on Day of the Child

In a nod to this Friday’s Day of the Child, the Council’s office of sports has put together a very special evening for youth aged 14 to 18 at the Antoni Blanc fitness centre. Department head Jordi Vidal described his office’s coordination of sports activities from 8 p.m. to 12 midnight, «including dances, skill-based games and sports, and use of the pool and gym».

Saturday, open-house at sports centre

The following day, 21 November, a day of sports will be geared toward families. «With the open-house on Saturday, Formentera families will have a whole day to get physical and focus on the family at the same time», explained Councillor Vidal, who described a wide array of activities as being organised. From 9:15 to 12 noon, children will have the opportunity to try out judo, basketball, indoor football and tennis, just to name a few, and from 12 to 1, staff will open up the swimming pool for water play. Finally, the kids can have a bit of a rest and snack from 1:15 to 2, before winners are announced in the school drawing contest for the Day of the Child.

All the while, parents can take part in an organised walk to Can Marroig put together by the Espalmador sports group; try their hand (or foot) at indoor cycling, pilates, self-defence or zumba classes; practice paddleball or tennis on the nearby courts; or head to the pool for open swim. The councillor invited all of Formentera to «come out to get a first-hand look at all the sports and fitness activities posible here on the island».

Formentera renews condemnation of attacks in Paris

nou minut silenciThe president of the CiF (Formentera Island Council), Jaume Ferrer, together with department heads from the ruling party and those from the opposition, other Council employees and island residents, gathered today to observe a minute of silence to honour the victims of Friday’s attacks on Paris. The event was convened for today, Monday 16 November at 12 noon on Constitució square in Sant Francesc, as an expression of mourning following the attacks.

In his role as representative of the local administration, President Ferrer once again expressed harsh criticism of the attacks and said: «For the victims and their families, my deepest condolences». He also wished all those injured a speedy recovery.

The CiF president called for a similar minute of silence at the same plaza on Saturday as a way to demonstrate «Formentera’s rejection of the heartless attacks on the French capital». Today’s event followed a call from the central government in Madrid to all offices of the public administration.

Formentera bemoans Madrid's decision to go at it alone, says resulting law «ill-advised»

Reunio Junta Portaveus premsaToday at noon, representatives from local political parties gathered for a one-off, urgent assembly of the Junta de Portaveus, convened yesterday by CiF president Jaume Ferrer, in order to discuss the constitutional court's recent ruling concerning the Ley de Costas (coastline law). Besides President Ferrer, the meeting was attended by CiF head of land management Alejandra Ferrer and the spokespersons or deputy spokespersons of Formentera's municipal parties. Susana Labrador was there to represent Gent per Formentera, Gabriel Mayans represented Partido Popular (PP), Rafael Ramírez spoke for the socialist party and Cristina Costa appeared for Compromís amb Formentera.

At the gathering the secretary general and head of services of the administration, Àngel Navarro, led a detailed review of the exact ruling, which references the unconstitutionality and nullification of sections 1.2 and 4 of the fourth amendment to the law, a part which concerns the coastline divisions on Formentera.  Following the meeting, President Ferrer explained to members of the press, «the goal was to reach a compromise that would allow us to issue a joint declaration on behalf of our different local parties», but said foot-dragging by the PP had made consensus impossible.

The administration, said Ferrer, will accept and obey the court's ruling. He commented, «the strong wording and decisive nature of the sentence demonstrate that the previous work by the legal teams of the central government – which called into question the past divisions – were poorly prepared». Further, President Ferrer bemoaned what he called Madrid's poor form at failing to include the Formentera Council in setting the new coastal delineations. Ferrer concluded: «This is unfortunately the same complaint we have tried without success to convey to the PP for the last four years».

The president lamented a situation in which the hardest hit are the landowners who have fought for years to regain  property lost because it lies in affected coastal areas. He said: «I'm aware of the unfairness of the situation» and pledged the Formentera Council would continue advocating for a return of lost land. Both Ferrer and the ruling party declared their intent to «continue trying to reach a consensus» and shared their hope the PP, «like the socialists, Compromís amb Formentera and Gent per Formentera have already done», will show a willingness to compromise.

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