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Second relief package unlocks nearly €483K to help local freelancers and SMEs weather Covid crisis

cartell 2021 ix ajudes AThe Consell de Formentera has announced a second, €482,896 funding package to help blunt the toll of Covid-19-related restrictions on local freelancers and small businesses. The call for applications posted today to the Balearic Official Gazette (BOIB) will bring total aid to €630,000 — a sum which local and regional authorities pledged to supply in equal parts.

To date 43 self-employed residents of Formentera and small businesses have benefited from the first round of assistance. That funding was announced in March and meant €130,000 in support, with the last applications for that aid still under review.

Consell de Formentera Vice-President Ana Juan remarked that the buy-in of hometown business owners and freelancers had been “key” and highlighted changes in terms aiming to make sure the money reaches “a maximum number of islanders”. For example, a broader array of professional activity will now be considered eligible for assistance: a fixed amount of relief will go to companies using the “objective estimation scheme” to report earnings as well as those created during the state of alert; no maximum current account balance applies in such cases, and declared profits may total €50,000, twice the previous €25,000 threshold. “We’re continuing to help an essential productive sector and our island’s biggest economic driver”, said the Vice-President.

Disbursements ranging from €1,500 to €7,000
Aid varies based on the nature of professional activity, period of time a business has been registered with regional revenue services, number of locations and how they pay taxes. Market vendors may receive €1,500 and owners of businesses with two locations can get as much as €7,000.

Terms
To be eligible, applicants must have their base of operations and pay taxes on Formentera and must have no outstanding debts with local government, or they must request deferral of payment for outstanding debts and that action must have received approval. Businesses’ average yearly workforce must not exceed ten employees; annual turnover mustn’t top €600,000, and profits must have remained below €50,000 in 2020, or turnover between 1 January 2020 and 31 May 2021 must have fallen at least 35% compared to 2019. In addition, loans issued by Spain’s Official Credit Institute (ICO) to support employment and mitigate economic fallout from the public health crisis will not be taken into account in calculating maximums.

20 working days to apply for aid online
To facilitate access and answer questions related to the assistance, the Consell de Formentera has put in place an information hotline at 971 32 10 87. Interested parties have until 16 September, or twenty working days from the day after publication in the BOIB, to apply for aid through the Virtual Citizen Information Office (OVAC). Complete details and terms can also be viewed on the Consell de Formentera website.


19 August 2021
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

Second weekend of expanded maritime patrols and special safety apparatus

foto 2021 inspeccions maritimesAThe Consell de Formentera reports that nine citations were issued yesterday as part of a special effort to curb passenger travel in Ses Salines Natural Reserve of Eivissa-Formentera which saw the local fisheries inspection service and Spanish coastal and maritime authorities conduct inspections of ten vessels.

Punitive measures will be sought in nine cases of unauthorised pickup and transport of people. Agents also checked of permits, documentation and skippers’ qualifications.

Environment and inspection services chief Antonio J. Sanz said more action would follow in the days ahead, and described the patrols as “key to tackling unlawful, environmentally destructive activity in the reserve”.

Consell de Formentera President Alejandra Ferrer praised the efforts of law enforcement and government agencies, whose strategy was the fruit of a one-off coordinating session on Wednesday 4 August which officials hoped would improve order in reserve waters and more broadly across the island.

As President Ferrer explained, “for the second weekend in a row, a special police presence spanning Formentera Local Police, Civil Guard, Balearic Emergency Response Service and the Formentera Departments of Inspections, Environment and Mobility will be on the lookout for crowds, street vending, parties in natural spaces and at homes and other violations of Covid restrictions which risk jeopardising the wellbeing of islanders and visitors”, said Alejandra Ferrer.

13 August 2021
Communications Department
Consell de Formentera

Formentera asks for tougher surveillance in nature reserve and on coast

foto 2021 Guardia Civil MaritimaConsell de Formentera President Alejandra Ferrer has met with Division General Carlos Crespo of the Coastal Prefecture and maritime police division of the Civil Guard. The officials gathered yesterday evening, with discussion focussing on local needs as the island of Eivissa prepares for a new Maritime Civil Guard office that will additionally be responsible for Formentera’s maritime security. The service’s current headquarters is on Mallorca. President Ferrer spoke to Division General Crespo about the importance of inter-agency collaboration in tracking activities in Ses Salines Nature Reserve and along the rest of the seaboard.

The president explained to Crespo that “Ses Salines needs order, and it needs it fast”. She insisted the rest of the island’s shoreline, where cultural interest landmarks vie for prevalence with protected natural spaces, was in need of reordering as well. And she decried strain placed on meadows of posidonia seagrass, which has been displaced from Ses Salines to areas like Es Pujols and Es Caló.

Participants of the meeting also addressed drinks peddling among seafaring craft, noisy “party boats”, persistent invasion of swimming areas, unauthorised motor equipment and a wave of other non-permitted activity that is dangerous, unhealthy and rooted in unfair competition. Representatives of the Civil Guard were sensitive to the Pine Islands’ need for a local base that delivered improved police presence and patrols.

The Civil Guard chief offered that the days ahead would see several maritime patrol craft, including the Río Segura, turn up in local waters.

Also on hand at the gathering were Colonel Alejandro Hernández Mosquera, who helms the Balearic Civil Guard force, along with Commander Enrique Gómez Bastida and Lieutenant Andrés Garcia.

12 August 2021
Communications Department
Consell de Formentera

Consell gives Formenterers Solidaris €25,500 to continue support for vulnerable islanders and projects in developing countries

foto 2021 formenterers solidarisConsell de Formentera president Alejandra Ferrer, and the director of Formenterers Solidaris, Maria Costa, have put their signatures on a €25,500 partnership agreement between local government and the hometown NGO. The deal will support food deliveries to Formentera’s most vulnerable, as well as cooperation projects in developing countries in 2021. Consell vice-president Ana Juan and Sara Miguel, the deputy director of Formenterers Solidaris, also attended the signing.

Under the arrangement, the non-profit will administer food vouchers from the Formentera Department of Social Welfare, distribute food to at-risk islanders; shape and manage cooperation and development initiatives in developing countries; organise lectures, round-tables, forums and exhibitions, and host drives to collect donations for people in need.

11 August 2021
Communications Department
Consell de Formentera

Local lifeguards get two new lookout and first-aid posts

foto 2021 casetes platgesThe Formentera Department of Interior is pleased to announce that the municipal lifeguard service has acquired two new booths for surveillance and first-aid. Priced at just under €25,237 (VAT included), the structures have a watchtower at the top and two separate areas —one for storage and staff changing rooms, and another with a first aid kit to care for the injured— down below.

Lifeguard service
Financed by the Consell de Formentera, the island’s seaside lifeguard service is operational between 1 May and 31 October. Ten lifeguards and a coordinator oversee safety on local beaches from 1 May until 1 June. The addition of 12 more lifeguards in June brings the total head count to 23, before dipping again to eleven —ten lifeguards and a coordinator— for the entire month of October.

In low season (i.e., May and October) lifeguards patrol Illetes, Llevant and Arenals. In June, July, August and September, in addition to these beaches, Pas des Trucadors, El Tanga, Es Pujols, Cala Saona and Es Caló are monitored as well.

Accessible, cardio care-equipped beaches
Arenals and Es Pujols beaches have access points for swimmers with reduced mobility. The service is available when the green flag flies, from 12 noon to 5.00pm. The service is available 1 May to 31 October at Arenals and 1 June to 30 September in Es Pujols.

11 August 2021
Communications Department
Consell de Formentera

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