After what was an at times bitter exchange, Calvia's full council meeting on Thursday approved a revision of local ordinance concerned with prostitution. This scraps the previous provision under which there was the possibility of taking prostitutes to court, a measure which the Balearic Provincial Court had ruled to be disproportionate and which was proving to be unworkable.
The Partido Popular opposed the revision, its councillor Raquel Sánchez referring to the "hell" out on the streets of Magalluf (and also Santa Ponsa) because of the muggings and violence committed by so-called prostitutes.
PSOE's Andreu Serra, referring to the lack of success of the previous ordinance and to it having been dismissed by the court, said that there needed to be an approach to combat human trafficking which takes account of how and why women are forced into prostitution. Mayor Alfonso Rodríguez, responding to criticism that legal means for combating the problem were being removed, said that the town hall was not "de-criminalising" prostitution, because the town hall does not have competence for the matter.
On a separate issue - terrace taxes - the council meeting approved a measure by which there is to be an incentive to bars and restaurants to stay open more than eight months. If an establishment is open for between nine and twelve months, it will only need to pay terrace tax for eight months.
The town hall hopes that this will contribute to reducing the effects of seasonality and to boosting the local economy. There are over one thousand establishments of varying types in the municipality, and they represent a third of Calvia's economic activity.
Opposition parties, while going along with the measure, questioned whether it will have any real impact.
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