President Armengol during a parlimentary session.


The Balearic parliament today approved, with the backing of all parties, a Partido Popular proposal that the government should bring to parliament a motion for a new law that regulates different types of tourist accommodation within six months. The proposal suggests that not only should the motion be brought before parliament but it should also be approved within this six-month timeframe.

This was one of three proposals made by the PP. Another required an amendment by Més and was, with this amendment, adopted unanimously. This demands that the government arrives at consensus on any new law with all those involved and in particular companies which market and promote holiday rentals via the internet. The Més amendment was to ensure that the voices of the island councils and town halls should also be heard in arriving at this consensus.

Where the PP failed was in its third proposal. Backed only by Ciudadanos, this called for the tourist tax law to be withdrawn until regulation of holiday rentals is established. This was rejected, the government pointing out that the tax is going to be introduced this year.

On other issues, President Armengol said that she will fight whoever might head the government of Spain in order to guarantee the agreements for change in the Balearics that had been signed up to by her party, PSOE, and Més and Podemos.

"An autonomous government should never be subordinate to what happens at state government level," she argued, with one eye on events in Congress and the investiture debate.

Pressed by the El Pi party, Armengol insisted that it was "very clear" the she did not represent PSOE nor socialist voters but rather all the citizens of the Balearics. "Regardless of whoever governs in Madrid, my commitments to this land (the Balearics) are firm." These are to all the people whether, she added, they were from the right, left or centre.

The president went on to say that the regional government is complying with the roadmap under the agreement for government struck between PSOE, Més and Podemos. She was confident that El Pi might join this agreement as well.

Responding to a question about public employees asked by the Podemos deputy, Carlos Saura, Armengol expressed her regret at what she described as the "foul play" of the previous administration (Partido Popular) of José Ramón Bauzá. This had resulted in the loss of public workers who could not now be readmitted and had cost ten million euros.