THE POTENTIAL power of the expat vote in Spain’s local elections is already being heralded as a recipe for change for the good.Town hall elections are being staged across the country in May 2011 and to claim a voice through the polls people need to register on both the Padron – the municipal register - and the Censo Electoral, the electoral roll.
Campaign groups are already mobilising volunteers to help win an expat voice come May 22nd next year and insuring people know they must be included on both lists to claim a vote - and the paperwork needed.
However, the importance of the vote is already being seen in Costa Blanca communities as people negotiate from a position of strength.In little Lliber – which has more than 300 illegal houses spread across the landscape – the AULN, Abusos Urbanisticos Lliber No – is running a ‘Please help us help you’ survey across the municipality.
LICENCEIt asks householders if they are affected by the illegality, how many people live in the home, and such things as whether it has a building licence or the owners possess a cedula, a certificate of habitation.
The AULN was formed to win rights for victims who were fooled into buying in the valley through an alleged conspiracy of town hall politicians, officers, lawyers, developers, and builders.
Adrian Hobbs, the group’s president, said: “The AULN committee is currently in discussion with both the current administration of Lliber Town Hall (PSOE) and the PP party in opposition, as they realise our vote will make a difference to the outcome of next May’s elections.”He said before making any commitments for expats the group needed factual information.”The more factual information we have, the better armed and organised we are.” The survey is open to all residents of Lliber. To complete the survey click here www.surveymonkey.com/s/aulnsurveyoct2010
And across Valencia and Murcia, RTN is running a “no vote, no voice’ campaign – supported by the British Consulate in Alicante and the provincial government the Diputacion de Alicante.
CONSULThis week Consul Paul Rodwell said he aimed to get people on the Padron to help integrate expats into the Spanish community“Get yourself a SIP card and as part of that it gives you access to various services and government,” he said. “Also, it gives you the opportunity to get on the Censo Electoral to have a voice here.
“Spain like the UK is a democratic country and the only realistic way of changing anything in a democratic country is by voting.”He said voting was very important and the best way of expressing criticism or moving change forward. “It is your opportunity to get on the Censo electoral. The deadline is the end of the year.
And the consul added: “I think the RTN campaign is absolutely brilliant. From my point of view it also gets people on the Padron, which then gives people all the others things and helps them integrate.”
For more information about voting in Spain and the lead up to the elections visit http://www.votinginspain.blogspot.com/
Source Round Town News Jack Troughton