The Ministry of Finance reversed, at the end of last year, the request for indebtedness worth 21.3 million euros from the 2020 Budgets that had been presented by the Murcia City Council and, among the arguments used, it warns of that “there are potential risks that may substantially affect the solvency of that Corporation.” In the application, sent on December 15, 2020, the Consistory requested permission to be able to sign credits with three banking entities in order to carry out a series of projects for that total amount.
In its report, to which THE TRUTH has had access, the General Subdirectorate of Budgetary and Financial Management of Local Entities of the Ministry reproaches the City Council for submitting the request two weeks before the end of the year for which it requested approval of the debt, and indicates that this extreme prevents it from “adequately assessing some of the essential parameters in this type of request.”
And he continues that “it has only been possible to make a preliminary assessment of the level of debt, which would raise it to 97.73%” (at the time of requesting the authorization it was at 75%); and that “it has not been possible to analyze, among other things, neither net savings nor compliance with the principle of financial prudence.”
The department responsible for authorizing the loans argues that the municipal debt would rise from 75% to 97%
The Ministry of Finance is the body that financially protects the Murcia City Council since in 2017 the tram works began to be recognized as debt, which caused it to exceed the level of 75% of its ‘living’ capital (money that still is pending payment), according to the Regulatory Law of Local Finance (LRHL).
The City Council, after receiving a first rejection, once again insisted on its demand and in the second report, prepared six days apart, the Department of the Treasury indicates that “it seems that it makes little sense to submit a request to finance investments of the Budget of 2020, in the last fortnight of the year, when it would hardly be possible to formalize the indebtedness before the end of the year ”.
And he reminds the City Council, then led by the PP-Cs coalition, that of the three loans that they authorized in 2019 for 24,107,000 euros (near the end of the year, in November), once “the data from the Bank of Spain were consulted At the end of 2020, only 6 million of one of them had been disposed of ».
Furthermore, the Treasury echoes the City Council’s Intervention report on the general budget, in which it states that, due to the advanced timing of the calendar “(…) it will inexorably lead to non-execution much higher than the percentage of previous years, and that it will cover practically all of the investments initially planned in the 2020 Budget project ”. And, just as Intervention did, the approval of the accounts for that year, on November 26, “is a more typical date for the approval of the 2021 Budget.”
The Subdirectorate General recalls that the settlement of the 2019 Budget presents a negative Treasury surplus of just over 3 million euros and that the LRHL prohibits “arranging new credit operations as long as it is not healthy”. The remainder of the treasury is the economic solvency that an administration has to face its debts.
The current government team regretted two days ago, during the presentation of the economic situation of the Consistory inherited after the motion of censure, that this refusal of the Ministry has left many districts without financing to carry out the investments that it had planned.
On the other hand, the councilor of the PP and former head of municipal accounts, Eduardo Martínez-Oliva, said yesterday that with the recent interventions on municipal accounts, the local government of PSOE and Citizens “is preparing the ground to apply a rise in Covert taxes that will affect thousands of Murcians.
The mayor called on Mayor José Antonio Serrano “to choose between being a rebellious mayor” (who claims to the national Executive the 3,000 million that he promised to the municipalities) “or a mayor submissive to ‘sanchismo'”, referring to President Pedro Sánchez.
For his part, the socialist mayor Enrique Lorca appealed to the popular to indicate “in which document this tax increase is included”, to insist that “it has never been on the table.”
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