June 2012 News Headlines

New palms planted at the Arenal

New Tourist Information kiosk on the beach promenade to be inaugurated on Wednesday

June 29th
Thanks to a special deal, the Town Hall has been able to plant 12 palms, twice the number of previous years and for the same price. The new tourist information kiosk on the beach promenade will be inaugurated next Wednesday, 4 July at 8.00pm with traditional local dances from the Grup de Danses Portitxol. They will also take this opportunity to hoist the blue flag that this beach has obtained. These improvements were requests from the Arenal Beach Business Association. From Press Release.

English lessons for Amjasa Employees

June 30th
The municipal water company Amjasa, has launched a training plan for its employees with the intention of improving customer service. The last course held was for eight employees, to learn English for customer service. The course of 16 contact hours, was given by the Hemeroscopea academy. From XAD: Los trabadores....

Arenal Police beefed up

June 30th
The Town Hall had planned to hire 10 extra officers for the summer, but a government decree has prevented this and instead the force has been re-organised to police the Arenal. Four agents in two shifts will be responsible for maritime surveillance and to provide auxiliary services for the Red Cross if necessary. Equipped with a motor boat, the officers will patrol the beaches, particularly those more difficult to reach by land. The area of ​​Arenal itself will feature a service consisting of 10 officers, divided into four shifts
and equipped with two motor scooters. From XAD: Xàbia refuerza....

Subsidies for Day Care Centre not received

June 30th
The Town Council agreed unanimously to request the Department of Social Welfare to expedite payments pending for the two social health centers which are partnered with the municipality. These are the Día Santa María de Betania day care centre and the Asilo (Asylum) Hermanos Cholbi. The Day care centre which opened in 2010. Since 2011 the Centre has not received the € 66,900 annual subsidy. Also, the regional government has not paid a similar allowance of € 264,770.12. to the Asilo Hermanos Cholbi. From XAD:El pleno exige.....

Bell ringing to celebrate Xàbia's 400 years

June 28th
The 400 year anniversary of the granting of the municipal charter and title of "Villa" (or Market Town) to Xàbia will be celebrated by a number of event. First there will be a special concert in the San Bartolome church at 10.00pm on Sunday July 1st where a number of special works dedicated to Javea will be performed. On Monday July 2nd , the exact anniversaty date, an official ceremony will take place in the church square - everyone welcome. The ceremony will close with a special concert of bells from the San Bartolome steeple `performed by the Guild of Campaners. This concert will relive the special rings used in the seventeenth century to warn the townsfolk of danger or celebration. These will include full-circle swings, rings of clamour for the dead souls, as well as those to warn of the closure of the city gates. More events will take place in October (from Press Release) For press releases on these events see: 400th Anniversary Celebrations

Traditional dancing in the Port

June 28th
This Saturday 30th June there will be traditional dancing at Avda Jaume 1 in the Port, starting at 8.00pm. Groups include "La Folixa" from Carreño (Asturias), and the local group Portitxol. The performance is outdoors and free. From Press Release.

Conference at the desalination Plant

June 27th
On Wednesday 4 July, the municipal water company AMJASA, will hold a conference on the water in the desalination plant facilities, organized in collaboration with Acciona. Everyone welcome. The idea is to inform the public and promote the idea that the plant is a valuable municipal resource of which the town should be proud.The meeting starts at 7.00pm. The plant manager, Aingeru Zarragoitia, will discuss the ten years of desalination experience in Javea. The biologist in charge of water quality analysis, Yolanda Perez Bragado, will present the possibilities of the brine as a commercial product. Finally, the Doctor in Biology and expert in the study and control of brine discharge that diffuses back into the sea, Jose Luis Sanchez Lizaso, will explain the optimum environmental solution found for the brine discharged into the Canal de la Fontana. From Press Release.

Forest Fire Surveillance Starts

June 28th
Forest fire surveillance for Xàbia municipality starts this weekend and will continue until 30th September. Everyone is asked to behave responsibly to help prevent wild fires. If anyone sees a plume of smoke or a fire they should ring Emergencies on 112 or the local police on 965790081 (from Press Release)

Prescription charges for OAP's start on July 1st

June 24th
The Valencia Government is introducing changes to the health system which includes co-payment for prescription drugs for pensioners. As of July, only pensioners on a minimum income, or who are beneficiaries of a non-contributory pension will continue to be elegible for free prescriptions. Others will have to pay, the amount being related to their income. If receiving less than €18,000 per year, the pensioner will have to pay 10% of the prescription up to a maximum of €8 per month; if more than €18,000 a year, 10% to a maximum of €18 per month; those receiving more than € 100,000 will pay 60% of the cost up to a maximum of €60 a month. The system requires information exchange between the tax and social security authorities, a move which has provoked some controversy. More changes will take place on September 1st at which time a new health card will be introduced and EU citizens will require having had legal residence for more than three months and proof that they have means to support themselves and familes, as well as health coverage in their home country which can be transferred to Spain. In January, new measures for privatising some of the health services will be introduced. Through these means, the government hopes to save some €500 million per year on health costs. From Las Provincias: La sanidad....

Late night shopping in the Old Town

June 28th
The Xàbia Històrica business association has presented a new activity that will début on Thursday 5 July. It is a “night of shopping” which will start off with a “shopping class” given by the Andalusian designer Maria Porres, which will give way to a night of shopping, with the doors of the majority of the Old Town shops open until after midnight. Bars, restaurants and taverns will also participate in this novel initiative with a special offer of wine or beer plus a tapa at the price of two Euros. The entire event will be animated by the traditional music of the Romàntica del Saladar and la colla Xirimitab’s. For details see Late Night Shopping in the Old Town

Sorting out the IBI Catastrazo

June 19th
The Town Council plenary meeting agreed to to file a request for a land-value review for the municipality. They also adopted a PP amendment to the motion requesting the expert opinion of the Consell Jurídic to clarify whether a refund of IBI overpaid by property owners may be solicited and how to go about it. As regards the necessary cuts in this year's budget due to the €7 million shortfall resulting from the reduction in IBI, the Mayor reiterated the willingness of his Government team to consult with the with bodies of citizen participation to agree on which budget items should be trimmed. From Press Release.

Here comes Summer

Temperatures push 40 degrees

June 22nd
According to Meteoxàbia , temperatures at "Montgó Verd" reached 37.7 degrees yesterday while humidity was a low 22% thanks to a very hot and dry wind from the west. The highest regional temperatures were recorded in Pego and Valencia hitting 38 degrees. Curiously Granadella was a nice and cool 27.5 degrees, being protected from the West, and subject to seas breezes. From XAD: Los termómetros...... Meanwhile an article in Las Provincias describes how early forest fires have already reached last year's record, and that the most devastating fires seem to have been started deliberately.

XIC offers 20 scholarships

June 17th
Thanks to the generous gesture of a benefactor who has decided to help Xàbia families who have children in public school, 20 students have the opportunity to pursue their studies in the Javea International College at a cost up to 50% less than normal. The patron, who prefers to remain anonymous, is aware of the precarious situation of public education in Spain, so it has decided to donate 20 scholarships so that children and youths who are currently enrolled in public school have the opportunity to attend a private school such as the XIC. From XAD: El XIC ofrece...

Why Spain’s Economy is Not (Necessarily) Sinking

June 17th
A perspective from sourcing and procurement company "Fullstep" paints a rosier picture of Spain's economy than we have been used to hearing of late. For example, Spain’s current account deficit has practically been corrected, reducing external financing needs of 10 percent of GDP in 2007 to less than 2 percent in 2011. Government debt — though it has significantly increased in the past four years — is, at around 70 percent of GDP, still below the levels of most European countries, including Germany. For full story see: Metalminer

Massive fire decimates seven municipalities

June 16th
A massive forest fire on Wednesday decimated 1350 hectares (3,300 acres) of natural landscape in Valencian municipalities just inland from Gandia. The areas affected were Ador, Villalonga, Llocnou de Sant Jeroni, Alfauir and Castellonet de la Conquesta in the Safor region, and Montixelvo and Terrateig in the Vall d'Albaida. 350 people had had to be evacuated from their homes. The cause of the fire which originated at Llocnou de Sant Jeroni is unknown. From Las Provincias: Trescientos vecinos.... Smaller fires have been reported from near Vergel and Beniarbeig heralding an early start to the fire season. (Ed's note: Jávea residents may have noticed smoke from the fire in the air)

Xàbia does not have to pay contribution to "The Mediterranean House"

June 16th
Xàbia Town Hall spends €200,000 per year on something abstract called the "Casa del Mediterráneo" (Mediterranean House). Three years ago, the municipality agreed to be co-host of this consortium, promoted by the Foreign Ministry, as the official forum for the reinforcement of ties between Mediterranean countries. The hope was to get some investment in the town, specifically funds to expropriate the "Minister's House" ( See Finca de San Rafael). However, none of the other contributors have paid up, and Xàbia can now use the €400,000 earmarked as contributions for 2011 and 2012 for other purposes. This comes in very handy in light of the reduced revenue expected as a result of the cancellation of the Catastrazo. (See Below) From XAD:Xàbia no tendrá...

"Catastrazo" null and void

June 16th
After 7 years of legal battle, Xàbia's botched property valuation of 2005 (popularly known as the "Catastrazo") finally been declared void. Property values on which rates (IBI) are calculated will now revert to 1995 values, resulting in a 7 million loss to the municipal coffers for 2012. The budget will therefore need some adjustments though Mayor Chulvi has stated that the public funds "have enough muscle to take on this situation and maintain all public services." The Council also plans to carry out a new property valuation. From Press Release. For background see: Catastrazo - Request to revert to 1995 values


Table of Contents

Plans to legalise extended areas for Beach bars

June 13th
According to Las Provincias, Jávea Town Hall technicians are drawing up proposals to ask Costas to extend the areas used by Jávea's beach bars (chiringuitos) from 20 square metres to a more realistic 150m. As things stand, the bars all overstep the 20m mark, stimulating numerous fines. They are also drawing up ideas to create parking zones near the chiringuitos and to protect other sea side areas from parked cars using wooden fencing. Another idea is to make the Montañar sea side road one way, enabling the creation of parking spaces next to the bike path and a pedestrian walkway from the Port to the Parador. From Xàbia propone...

Amjasa replaces blocked water pipes in Tarraula

June 12th
Amjasa is replacing water pipes and valves in the Tarraula area which have, over time, become blocked with cal. The area has few residents, except during the summer, hence a low water flow, which has contributed to the build up of deposits ion the pipes. From XAD: Amjasa sustituye....

Spain to export stone-fruit to South Africa

June 11th
Spanish producers and exporters of stone fruit can now export to South Africa, according to an agreement signed recently between the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture Food and Environment (MAGRAMA), and the South African Department of Agriculture, Services Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF), FreshPlaza.com reports. According to Wikipedia, "Stone fruit" includes plums, cherries, mangos, peaches, and apricots. They commonly are referred to as "stone fruits" because their seed is very large and hard. The EU accounts for 93% of Spanish exports of Spanish fruit and vegetables, FreshPlaza.com says, but producers and exporters grouped in the Spanish producer and exporter association (FEPEX) have shown a growing interest in exporting to non EU countries - such as South Africa - with interest in the stone fruit sector. In 2011, Spanish exports to South Africa stood at 4,543 tons, of which 3,818 tons were fruit - mostly table grapes and avocado - and 725 tons were vegetables. From Biz Community

Students meet childrens' author Pepa Guardiola

And visit some of the Jávea locations in her novels

June 7th
A group of 57 first and second year ESO students the IES Massamagrell visited Javea on a cultural, historical and literary excursion. The students visited the Arnauda Riurau. Most of them had never seen a riurau before and did not know what they were used for. They then climbed to the plana to visit the lighthouse at Cap de Sant Antoni and the group of 11 windmills finishing the morning with a visit to the archaeological site in the Punta del Arenal, where they learned about the ancient Roman fish farm and the necropolis in the Muntanyar. At midday they met with the writer Pepa Guardiola. The students had working on a project about Guardiola's many books, including “El talismà del temps”, “Els grumets del cap Negre” and “Una llar en el món”, all set in Javea and the comarca of Marina Alta. Meeting the author in person and visiting the locations of her books was the perfect end to this educational project. From Press Release

Xàbia Port Business Association re-launched

June 7th
The Association of Retailers and Businesses of Aduanes del Mar unveiled its new promotional brand "Xàbia Port", which they hope will bring together all the retail, hospitality and services businesses in the area. The group also presented its new executive board, chaired by Yolanda Ponce. The idea is provide a unified image of the Port as a commercial, tourist and leisure destination. This area has approximately one hundred bars and restaurants, as well as over 170 small shops and service businesses. For more details see:XabiaPort

Second Les Caletes viewpoint enlarged

June 6th
The Town Hall has carried out maintenance and cleaning work in the viewpoints of les Caletes and Cala Blanca, and enlarged their perimeters. The second viewpoint that now offers spectacular views to Cap Negre thanks to a new orientation. Workers have improved the access, cleaned up the surroundings, hand-picked the weeds, changed the wooden railings and installed new benches. This area forms part of the network of tourist viewpoints created by the Town Hall in 1996 in collaboration with the Valencian Agency of Tourism. From Press Release.

Forest Fire devastates agricultural land

June 8th
A forest fire devastated almost 30 hectares of cultivated land and 2 ha of forest in Benissa and Calpe. The fire started at 11.30 in the morning and was out by 9 at night. The origin of the fire is unknown. (Las Provincias June 11th)

Spanish cycling deaths rank highest in Europe, study shows

June 7th
Spain ranks the highest among European countries in terms of cyclist deaths on the road, according to a study released Tuesday. In 2010, 67 bike deaths were reported across the country — 20 percent more than the previous year, said Julio Laria of the Mapfre Foundation’s Institute for Road Security, which conducted the survey. There were 564 serious injuries in 2010 resulting from traffic accidents involving cyclists. For full story see: El Pais in English

Could going green get Spain out of the red?

June 7th
June 5th 2012 marks UN World Environment Day with the ‘Green Economy’ as its theme. As Spain grapples with 24% unemployment, a double-dip recession and a potential banking meltdown, should it even be thinking about greening its economy? Surely the environment should be the last thing on the agenda. Actually now is exactly the time Spain should consider reviving its ailing finances through a more sustainable economy. The monetary value of nature and the water, food, energy and clean air it provides, is enormous. The resilience of the global economy is intricately linked to the environment; and the maths for a global green economy doesn’t just make environmental sense but economic sense. For full story see: El Pais (in English) blog

Mayor Chulvi turns down job as Alicante Socialists' Secretary General

June 6th
Despite being the agreed candidate for PSOE's Secretary General for Alicante province, Xàbia's Mayor, José Chulvi has turned down the position preferring instead to focus on Xàbia. Chulvi began his political career in 1999, was secretary of his party's group in 2004 and served as a councillor in 2007. He is also a deputy in the provincial parliament, representing the interests of Javea and the region. Chulvi receives only his parliamentary salary, declining his mayor's salary, and entitlements for sitting on Amjasa's board etc. From XAD: Chulvi renuncia...

Javea school kids visit the Migdia del Montgó exhibition

June 5th
Hundreds of Javea schoolchildren visited the exhibition entitled “Art and Death in the Montgo: The Cave in the Migdia Ravine" in the Cirne Foundation these last few weeks. In addition to listening to the local archaeologist, Ximo Bolufer explain the process of excavating the nearly 5,000-year-old remains as well as give information about the Montgo, the Copper age period, its settlers and their customs, they were able to immerse themselves inside the 3D replica of the burial cave and take part in several arts and crafts workshops. For more details see: Cova del barranc de Migdia

Landslide protection for Access to Ambolo

June 6th
Access to the Ambolo cove has always been prone to landslides, and it has been officially cut off since 2006, though people who want to go there ignore the warnings and walk down to this attractive cove which is Xàbia's official Naturist's beach. The Town Hall has now contracted a specialist company to install mesh and restraining anchors to try to prevent further landslips. The cost of the mesh alone will be €15,650. Despite the works, members of the public are warned that they go down there at their own risk and that the risk of landslide still remains. From Las Provincias: Xàbia invierte... and Press Release.

Legal glitch in the protection of Portitxol

June 6th
Conservationists had a bit of a fright when the Valencian High Court overturned a 2004 agreement between the Town Hall and the owners of the bulk of the land in Portitxol (The heirs of Guillermo Pons owning over 100,000 square metres). The agreement had been to convert the then urbanisable coastal land into a public municipal park. Other land owners in the area appealed against the agreement, and were successful due to two administrative glitches: a) That the town hall had not requested a report from the Hydrographic Confederation of Júcar (Regional rivers and water authority) b) That the Ministry of the Environment should have reclassified the land as undeveloped land under special protection. In theory the land goes back to being as it was in 2004, i.e. available for building 72 homes, however since that date Valencian law has shifted the goal posts against building projects in such environmentally valued areas and any new construction project would undoubtedly be rejected. (From XAD: El TSJ tumba... As a follow up it was noted that the High court judgement had also stated that the area was protected. The Town Hall plans to include it in a green network of protected areas under the new PGOU. (Las Provincias: Xàbia estudia...

Workshop to teach job-seeking skills to young people

June 4th
The Javea Town Hall’s Department of Youth, in collaboration with Creama, has organised a free workshop aimed at young people ages 16 to 30 interested in learning effective job-seeking skills. This includes preparing proper curriculum vitae, psychometric tests, job interviews, cover and recommendation letters. They will also learn where to find job openings through different channels such as the Internet, newspapers, and employment agencies. Places are limited so those interested should register this week at the Monjove offices in the Casa de Cultura. The workshop, which lasts four hours, will take place on Wednesday morning 13th or 20th June from 9.00 am to 1.00 pm. From Press Release

The Chamber of Commerce gives business conference in Javea

June 4th
The Alicante Chamber of Commerce is giving a business seminar on Wednesday, 6th June to present its products and services. The presentation will be at 8.00 pm in the Xàbia Casa de Cultura. This conference is aimed particularly at those looking to find work through self-employment opportunities. From Press Release

Draft bye laws on tables on terraces approved.

June 2nd
The Town Council has approved bye laws limiting the use of pavements for tables and chairs. The new criteria will be displayed to the public for a month, before final adoption. During this time, citizens can file complaints or suggestions they deem appropriate. From XAD:La ordenanza....

Amjasa finishes 2011 with a profit of €138,00

June 1st
Jávea's municipal water company, Amjasa closed 2011 with a profit of 138,336 Euros to be invested in improvements to the water supply. The Board of Directors also indicated that the first quarterly report for 2012 promises good results, with a profit of 80,000 Euros in three-months and no need to use bank loans for day-to-day expenses for the first half of the year. For full Press Release see: Amjasa 2011 accounts. The new website (which includes contact e-mail addresses) can be found on: http://amjasa.com/

Consequences of a dry spring.

June 1st
The President of the Confederación Hidrográfica del Júca (Valencia regional rivers and water authority ) has asked for maximum control of water usage, particularly by irrigators, to avoid water restrictions after a notably dry spring. If these conditions continue into the autumn, the situation could get dangerous. At the same time, there have already been forest fires in a gorge between Val d'Ebo and the Vall de Alcalá and near the Guadalest Castle. (Las Provincias June 1st)

Possible amnesty for illegal homes

June 1st
The Ministry of Development is drawing up guidelines to allow flexibility in dealing with illegal houses which are under demolition orders. They want help legalise houses which have been bought in good faith, without knowledge of their illegal status. The text will need to weigh the balance between two conflicting rights: home ownershiip and protection of the land. The move raises concerns that leniency will send the wrong signals, and penalise those municipalities which have managed their development well. The general development policy is shifting away from new urbanisations and towards consolidation within already urban areas . From las Provincias: La amnistía...

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