January 2010 News Headlines

Petrol Station to be demolished

Jan 31st
The ELF petrol station in Benitatxell, just over the border from Xàbia and next to Xàbia's BP Station, is to be demolished on Monday. The station was built on agricultural land in 1990 and has been ordered for demolition by the courts. The Company which runs the station is asking for compensation, since it holds theTown Hall responsible for granting a license to allow the building of the station in the first place. From Las Provincias: Benitatxell derruirá....

Alert for Palm Tree Pest


Jan 31st
Two outbreaks of a red palm tree weevil have been detected in Putxol and Montañar. This pest mainly affects the Canary date palm. Treatment is to cut off infested parts, treat the rest with insecticide and cover the stump with plastic. Visible symptoms are general collapse of the crown; rusty, nibbled, limp leaves; tears in attachment to the crown and twisting of the leaves in the "armpits" . In heavy infestations the entire crown is damaged and the palm killed. Alerta Xàbia.... Members of the public are asked to contact the Parks and gardens department 965790500 ext 1308 or e-mail gro.aibaxja|secivres#gro.aibaxja|secivres if they know of any tree with the symptoms.

Old Town residents to receive car identification cards soon

Jan 31st
People who live in the Old Town and who need car access into the pedestrian areas for loading and unloading will soon receive stickers to identify their cars, as well as a controller to raise and lower the hydraulic bollards. People were asked to register last March, and it has taken 11 months for the management contract to be agreed and put in motion. Fom Las Provincias : Xàbia intregará....

We want the new Microsoft Centre here (and so do we )!

Jan 31st
Microsoft has signed an agreement with the Valencia Government to set up a "Centre for Innovation in Health Technology" somewhere in the Comunidad. The exact location will be decided "next week". Needless to say just about every municipality in the Comunidad has applied to be a candidate location, including Xàbia. The Town Council agreed unanimously to put the Town's case forward to the regional Ministry of health. One of Xàbia's qualities is the presence of a large number of retired old folks, who would make use of innovative technologies (such as remote health monitoring over the Internet - CBJ) The centre will consist of about 300 square meters, its construction will start this year and it will have an initial staff of ten professionals. The Generalitat will contribute € 800,000 for the first two years of operation. From XAD Xàbia aspira... Update Feb 11th : Torrevieja won.

Spain to cut spending by €50 Billion

Jan 30th
The Spanish government outlined far-reaching spending cuts on Friday to bring its sizable budget deficit under control, amid forecasts that the country would remain mired in recession for another year. Elena Salgado, the finance minister, said the spending cuts would spare only a few areas — education, antiterrorism, research and development, pension payments and unemployment assistance. For more see NYT Spain announces broad spending cuts

Spain lobbies for the integration of maritime and environmental policies

Jan 30th
THE Spanish Minister of the Environment and Rural and Marine Affairs, Elena Espinosa, lobbied the European Parliament this Thursday for the conservation of fisheries resources and the integration of maritime and environmental policies in order to achieve a sustainable level of use. For more see: Fishnewseu.com

No Fanfare for Fitur


Jan 27th
Each year, Javea sends a delegation to the International fair for Tourism in Madrid (FITUR) and normally the town gives a high profile to its exhibit with press releases, photos and notices on the web. This year was very low key, so low that few people noticed the event at all. Javea's stand was the same one last used five years ago. Gone were the cool flat screen displays and videos of last year. 11,000 companies from 170 countries exhibited at FITUR 2010, though 52% of the exhibits were Spanish and numbers of exhibitors was 7% down. From XAD FITUR se recicla....and Las Provincias.

Xàbia Association for business innovation launches with stimulating conference

Jan 27th
The Xàbiaidea association held its first conference at the Rodat with guest speakers laying the ground with talks on the technologies of innovation, and how economic cycles and crises, shift and change types of economic activity. The dominance of huge companies such as General Motors is on the wane. Industry giants (for now) are Google and Skype. Businesses need to innovate or die in this changing world. For more and link to website see Xabiaidea.

Spanish economy to shrink 0.6 percent in 2010

Jan 27th
Spain, suffering its worst recession in decades, will see its economy shrink another 0.6 percent this year, the International Monetary Fund has said in its latest global forecast. For more see SIFY

Government plans new rules for municipal rolls

A new reform currently being drafted by the government would oblige everyone,including illegal immigrants, to register on municipal rolls, as well as guaranteeing their right to be registered. The planned measures, announced yesterday by secretary of state for territorial cooperation, Gaspar Zarrías,could be in place by 2011. For more see: Padron - new rules proposed

Dramatic rescue in Rio Gorgos

Jan 27th
Local Police were on safety patrol at the fords of the swollen Río Gorgos, when at 8.00 am they saw a young man take off his rucksack and jump into the river. He was quickly swept away. A first rescue attempt was made at the Pla road bridge, where they threw ropes for him from a truck; but the young man passed by without attempting to catch them. He was finally rescued at the Via Augusta bridges, where the flow was less and where he became stuck in tree branches. Officer Joan Sotos finally pulled out the nearly unconscious man, who was covered with bruises and suffering from hypothermia. The man, a German in his 30's is recovering in hospital. He was said to be suffering from mental disorders. The incident lasted a mere 10 minutes, and the man had been swept some 600 metres. From Las Provincias La Policía local.....

Endangered Cormorants nest on the Cabo de San Antonio


Jan 25th
The Department of the Environment has recorded 13 pairs of nesting cormorants (Phalacrocorax aristotelis) in Las Marinas. The largest colony is on the sea cliffs of the Cabo de San Antonio. consisting of seven nests, and there is a new breeding pair in Portixol. The Environment Secretary, Mari Angles Ureña remarked that the excellent conservation of the nesting sites provided abundant fish and quiet, two of the most important factors for successful breeding. This offered good prospects for the future. From Las Provincias: Trece parejas..... Visitors to Javea Port often enjoy the site of cormorants fishing near the Grava beach.

Preserve our Windmills!


January 25th
The newly formed Xàbia Viva association is campaigning to have the 11 windmills of the Cabo de San Antonio designated as items of cultural interest (BIC - Bien de Interes Cultural). They believe the mills, aged between 160 and 700 years old, should be rehabilitated as far as possible as important touristt attractions as well as being cultural assets. They expressed the need for regional collaboration to preserve windmills in the area, and the diffusion of windmill technology in its role as a renewable energy source. From XAD Xàbia viva pide....

Demo to demand Gandía to Denia Railway

January 24th
For the last 30 years or so there has been a lot of talk about linking the railway line between Gandía and Denia, and thus complete a coastal line between Alicante and Valencia. The Ministry of development recently announced that this connection will be included in plans for the area to be submitted in March, but that implementation will be over the next 12 years. A commission of Mayors from municipalities in the Marina Alta met and agreed to set up a working committee to collect all information regarding the railways over the 36 years since the Denia Carcaixent line was closed. In the meantime they have organised a mass demonstration in Denia on Saturday 30th January, starting at 5.30 pm Route: Explanada de Torrecremada, calle Patricio Ferrándiz, calle Diana ending in calle La Vía, where Xàbia sculptor Toni Marí will read a statement. Petition forms are being circulated for signature. From Las Provincias and Denia Town Hall website

Red Cross collects €3,221.50 for Haiti

January 23rd
Over the past few days, the Xàbia Red Cross collected over 3000 Euros for earthquake victims in Haiti. They set up collection tables in the three urban centres including a "bunuelo" stall in the Thursday Market . Further fund raising activities are planned. From XAD.

Regional Government to repair Caleta embankment

January 23rd
Following his visit to the Javea Port Caleta landslide, the regional Minister for infrastructure and transport, Mario Flores, announced that the regional Government would undertake the urgent repair works. He noted that a contributory factor to the landslide, which had occurred after heavy rains, was the removal of large amounts of material from the area in the 1950's during the state funded construction of the port's second pier. He also suggested the drafting of a comprehensive project to cover the entire sea cliff, which would also have to be collaboratively funded. From XAD: La Generalitat....

Working group set up to devise by-laws to govern Fiestas


January 22nd
A working group pf councillors (Health, Youth, Fiestas and Public Safety), technical staff, representatives of the fiesta committees and Peñas all met yesterday to address the problems of antisocial behaviour, particularly among the young, which was becoming more evident in the fiestas. They plan to develop a set of regulations to enable everyone to co-exist peacefully during the celebrations. They agreed to draw up an inventory for consideration. Next meeting February 4th. From Press release.

Spill in Río Gorgos being investigated


January 22nd
Ther Department of the Environment and Hydrographic Confederation of the Júcar are investigating a possible spill in the river Gorgos. A green stain extends Camí les Sorts to the river mouth. They have ruled out the sewerage treatment plant as being the source. From Las Provincias: Xàbia investiga....

Caleta Landslide - Town Hall responsible for repairs.

January 20th
There has been a hiatus in doing anything about the Caleta landslide, because it was unclear which was the responsible authority, the Town Hall or regional Ministry for Infrastructure. It has now been determined that since the land which slipped was urban land, the responsibility lies with Xàbia Town Council. Stabilising the cliff and repairing the infrastructure to make the houses on la Caleta safe will cost a cool 2 million Euros. The authorities are working together to find sources of funding to cover this work. Previous stabilisation works carried out after the 2007 floods had been funded by the Ministry of infrastructure, under the regional disaster fund. From Las Provincias: El consell y Xàbia.....

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Storms leave 35 km of Valencian beaches exposed

January 20th
Recent storms have seriously eroded 35 km of beaches in the Comunidad Valenciana. Twelve are in the Marina Alta, eight in Safor, five in l'Horta and 10 in the province of Castellon. Tourist industry businesses are getting worried that the beaches will not be regenerated in time for the tourist season. Researchers at the Polytechnic University of Valencia calculate that artificial beaches of 40-50m depth should be able to last for 10 years, but such measures are expensive. From Las Provincias: Los temporales dejan.... Meanwhile JCBs have been busy on Xàbia's Arenal beach, moving large quantities of sand back down to the waters edge. Storms had pushed sand up the beach, so that the showers and children's climbing frames had been buried.

Electric vehicles: Andalusia signs an agreement with the Renault-Nissan Alliance

January 19th
This is the second Renault-Nissan Alliance agreement to promote the implementation of the use of the electric vehicle in Spain, following the announcement by the Alliance and Barcelona City Council that underlined the intention to set up a fleet and almost 200 recharging points in the city. Renault factories have been awarded two new models and an engine for 2011-2013, including the car derived from the Twizy Z.E. Concept, the first electric vehicle to undergo large-scale production in Spain. For more see: REVE website

Xabia Businesses set up an ideas Association


January 19th
A group of Xabia businesses have set up an association called: "Xàbia idea" to promote new ideas to make Xàbia more competitive, make better use of resources, diversify the economic profile and make tourism less seasonal. They seek to introduce a culture of innovation through conferences, meetings and awards. On Tuesday 26th January, from 10.00am they will be launching a forum on Entreprenureship at the Hotel Rodat . For more deatils and the programme of the meeting see: http://xabiaidea.es/

Group of US Students visits Xàbia


January 18th
A group of Students from Colin College Univeristy, Michigan State visited Xàbia on Friday and were shown the Old Town, Museum and San Bartholome Church. They are participating in an educational programme through the Universidad Nacional de Educación a distancia (UNED). For the next 5 months they will stay with families in Denia and assist in UNED sessions. (From Press release)

Chulvi substitutes for Bas on Amjasa board

January 18th
The Javea Socialists have asked that José Chulvi should replace Rafa Bas as the Socialist representative on the AMJASA Board. Bas cites professional commitments as the reason why he is unable to attend all board meetings. From XAD

Awarding of contracts under the new stimulus plan criticised by the opposition

January 17th
The opposition parties in Xàbia Town Hall have criticised the ruling coalition for a lack of transparency in the awarding of contracts under the "Plan Confianza" - development/stimulus fund from the Valencia Government. The method of tendering used was to invite potential contractors. Although the opposition parties were given the opportunity to suggest contractors to bid for work, the time scale was considered too short to carry out requirements such as the geotechnical study of ground beneath the proposed municipal library and social centre in the Port (awarded to the son of ex-mayor Juan Moragues). Nueva Javea has asked that the contracts should be revoked and the tendering process run again, more openly. The opposition (and PP spokesman, Generoso) questioned the procedure of inviting selected firms to tender since it naturally raises suspicions of nepotism. Why the non-Javea company CAT (which did the controversial feasibility study for the underground car parks) was invited to tender for a tarmac project remains a mystery. From XAD: La oposición acusa...

Our yoyo winter weather

January 17th
The Comunidad Valenciana has experienced notable extremes of weather this winter. Record warm periods have suddenly alternated with record cold, record winds and record rain. The Meteorogical agency (AEMET) attributes this to an unusually weak anticyclone in the Azores which has allowed the circulation of storms and different weathers. Las Provincias. The good news is that the weather should be more "suave" (mild) up until the beginning of February (fingers crossed!) La comunitat vive....

Fishermen Foil Drug smugglers

January 14th
By chance, fishermen twelve miles off the coast of Xàbia noticed three suspicious Zodiac ribs. As it turns out they were dumping a large cache of hashish on the sea bed. The bundles were in at least three separate nets and initial estimates are of a haul of some 2000kg. The Guardia Civil will be investigating. This was a stroke of luck for the authorities, since there are insufficient resources for the coastal police to carry out a 24 / 7 patrol.
From Las Provincias: Un pesquero evita....

Altea promotes Urban allotments

Jan 14th
One of the projects to be promoted by the Xàbia's Agenda21 programme will be the establishment of Urban Allotments - small plots where town dwellers can grow their own fruit and veg. However it looks like Altea has beaten Xàbia to the post in this initiative. Their Town Hall's organisation: AlteaNatura.org has already set up one such project. For more in English (their site is in three languages) See Altea Natura.org

Outfall of Arenal Storm Drain damaged by rough seas


January 12th
The outfall of the new storm drain near Scallops has been damaged by strong wave action. Rough seas crash into the outfall chamber. Since the drain pipes are below water level, and closed by flap valves, the air and water in the chamber has nowhere to go. As a result the concrete slab above the chamber has been lifted and is broken in several places. When seas are rough, a small geyser can be seen squirting up through one of the holes (see right hand side of the picture). The councillor for works is aware of the problem and they are trying to think of a suitable solution. Meantime the large water collector near the Alabrasa Resturant needs a good clean. Other drainage/road works in the area cannot be completed because low-lying land continues to be flooded by rain-water run-off coming from the Saladar. (From XAD and personal observation)

Landslide near Cap Negre leads to a house being condemned


January 13th
Some German visitors who rented a house on Cap Negre (Balcon del Mar) had a very lucky escape. They had been enjoying the morning sun on the glassed-in terrace of their rented house, and decided to go inside to make a cup of coffee. Suddenly an earthquake-like vibration took them by surprise as the terrace disappeared with a chunk of cliff into the sea. The recent rains have undermined the stability of these cliffs (which are geologically the most unstable along the Javea Coast). The upshot is that one entire house will be demolished (at cost to the owners) before more of it falls, since debris will be a danger to boats and walkers below, while part of another house will also be knocked down. (From Las Provincias print edition). Dr Antonio Pina from the University of Alicante likened the cliffs to "Gruyere Cheese" - full of holes and cavities. He recommended a detailed study of the subsoil to see if it was stable. In the 1990 urban plan the plots we drawn as flat, but in fact were on very steep slopes. (Las Provincias - Jan 14th)

APASA web site attacked by hackers

January 12th
The abandoned dogs and cats at the APASA animal sanctuary have enough problems surviving the cold, wet weather (there is an urgent call for donations of blankets, towels and other material suitable for bedding). Now, to add to their woes, the APASA web site has been attacked by hackers, deleting the database of animals available for adoption. Volunteers are trying to re-create the site and put togetheer the information. On a more positive note, on January 17th at 12.30pm the pastor from the Port will bless the animals and residents' pets. They will also be holding a fund-raising event. From XAD: APASA víctima ....

Another landslide behind the Port


January 12th
On 11th morning just before 8.00 am, part of the slope at the back of the port, not far from the sailing school, slipped down. Damage was slight, but access to two houses on la Calle Caleta was cut. The danger area has been cordoned off by Police. The last big slip in this area followed the 2007 floods, and it is thought that the recent rains caused the new damage. The CEO of Ports has been contacted and the regional Ministry of infrastructure will be asked to assess the damage and determine what action should be taken. From Press release

In Andalucía, a majority of people are recycling as a way of life

January 8th
Two out of every three residents of Andalucía say they recycle their household waste of paper, glass and plastic “as a matter of habit”. Those are the conclusions of the Ecobarómetro de Andalucía 2009 produced by the Institute of Advanced Social Studies for the region’s ministry of the environment. For more see: In Spain, a majority....

Of those questioned 65.3per cent said they sorted out their household waste for recycling whilst 27 per cent admitted they didn’t recycle at all.

Bribery case shelved

Jan 5th
A Denia judge has shelved a case alledging bribery in the awarding of the Javea garbage collection contract of 2006 on account of lack of evidence. The accusation had been made by a PSPV councillor, who said he had been approached to accept money in exchange for his support in the tendering process. He reported this to the Guardia Civil who helped him record conversations with representatives of one of the tendering companies. In these recordings the contractor said they had offered money to councillors and technical staff amounting to 50 million pesetas. However the case became public before the police were able to check if anyone had been paid. From Las Provincias: El juez archiva....

New Years Day dip raises €2000

Jan 2nd
50 bravehearts participated in the annual New Years Day dip in the sea at the Arenal. This was organised by the Lancashire Bruja pub and raised some €2000 for Christmas presents for the orphans at the Gandia orphanage. Some of the money also went to help support a single mother who is sole carer for her 16 year old son who has Hodgkins lymphoma. From XAD

Rubbish collection fee frozen

Jan 2nd
The waste treatment fee for the Marina Alta will be frozen at €37.35 per ton (plus IVA), in return the concessionaire FCC retains the contract for another year. This means that the Town Hall will not have to pay any more to get rid of its garbage. The Alicante government is looking at the possibility of making the tax agency SUMA responsible for collecting the tax, taking the heat off Town Halls when the rates go up. From XAD: Congelan la tasa....

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