April 14, 2021

A judge investigates the mayor of Palma for prevarication for prohibiting tourist flats | Economy

A judge investigates the mayor of Palma for prevarication for prohibiting tourist flats | Economy



The court of instruction number 5 of Palma investigates the mayor of the Balearic capital, Antoni Noguera (Més per Mallorca), for an alleged crime of administrative or urban trespass prohibition of tourist rental apartments and apartments throughout the city. The regulations of the Balearic capital only allow the holiday lease in single-family homes – chalets or isolated houses – after last summer the team chaired by Noguera prohibited the exercise of this activity in multi-family buildings, such as flats or apartments. The court has admitted the complaint filed last November against the mayor by the Spanish Federation of Associations of Housing and Tourist Apartments (FEVITUR).

As explained by the employer, in a ruling issued this week the judge considered that the reported facts have characteristics "that make presume the possible existence of a crime of administrative prevarication of Article 404 of the Criminal Code and / or a crime of urban prevarication of the article 320 of the Criminal Code ". The judge has requested a series of documentation to start the investigation, such as the reports that the Consistory delivered to the company in charge of designing the initial proposal to limit the vacation rental.

The reform of the General Tourist Law promoted by the government of the socialist Francina Armengol in summer 2017 forbade the holiday rental in flats and apartments, but left in the hands of the City of Palma the possibility of applying a local regulation that would allow this activity in certain neighborhoods. The City Council led by Noguera decided not to divide the city into areas and in the month of July last year approved the declaration of the capital as a single zone, prohibiting de facto tourist rentals in multi-family dwellings throughout the city. The proposal went ahead with the support of the PSOE, which He held the position of command of the mayor during the first two years of the legislature, and of Podemos. The PP opted for abstention and Citizens voted against.

Two more complaints

After the ban of the City Council, the Spanish Federation of Associations of Housing and Tourist Apartments filed a complaint in November for malfeasance against Noguera, considering that he may have incurred "in illicit behavior", pointing to the preparation of "completely arbitrary" urban reports , they affirm, do not conform to reality and have the sole intention "to complete the preconceived plan to end tourist housing in the municipality." Before approving the measure, the government team commissioned a series of studies on the impact of this activity in the city, which revealed that 48% of tourist rental flats are offered in periods of between seven and eight months, which vetoba possibilities to the entry of long-term residential rental in the market.

In addition to FEVITUR's complaint, the two appeals lodged by the tourist housing association of the Balearic Islands (HABTUR) through administrative litigation against the zoning of tourist rentals in Mallorca and Palma. Unlike the Balearic capital, the government team of the Consell de Mallorca defined the practice of holiday lease in certain areas of the island. Based on criteria of density and population, the Island Council allows tourist rental in flats of certain areas, delimits it to a maximum period of days a year in others and restricts it completely in certain municipalities.

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