The Andratx town hall building. | Ultima Hora


Andratx town hall has become the latest of Majorca's local authorities to report that it is no longer carrying any debt. Bank loans and other forms of debt have been paid off, meaning that Andratx joins the ranks of "healthy" local authorities in Spain.

The town hall admits that five years ago it was hard to imagine that it would now be in this situation. Back then the difficulties were such that it was hard to pay suppliers.

Estefania Gonzalvo, the finance councillor, puts it all down to taking responsible measures and to accepting that money being spent was not actually the town hall's but everyone's in the municipality. Spending had, therefore, to be done more wisely, while at the same time achieving debt reduction without introducing cutbacks. The improvement in finances has even enabled reductions in taxes, such as property tax.

The final settlement was for three loans of a little over 330,000 euros. The administration will now be able to allocate budget surplus (albeit within the strict parameters laid down by national government) to necessary projects in Andratx.

Gonzalvo says that money must be "on the streets" through investment or in the residents' pockets and not be in the bank.

Andratx becomes the seventh Majorcan municipality to be declared debt-free. Alcudia, Ariany, Campos, Deya, Sant Llorenç and Selva are the others.