01-11-2018

The allocations for all ministries and agencies in next year's budget have been announced, and the budget documents have been delivered to parliament ahead of the debate that will follow. With total spending for 2019 having been settled at 5,458 million euros, an increase of over eight per cent, there are nevertheless ministries which will lose out. There are three and they are all controlled by Més - culture, social services and tourism.

In the case of tourism, which will have 54 million euros in 2019 (a decrease of just over 15%), there are two explanations - one is that certain responsibilities have been transferred to island councils and another is an outstanding government payment on the Palacio de Congresos in Palma, which falls within the tourism ministry budget.

Although the ministry will see its spending decrease, the Aetib tourism agency will get 37% more. Its budget of 122.3 million is largely explained by tourist tax projects that it manages. With social services, responsibilities have also been partially transferred to island councils, hence the decrease. Where culture is concerned, this ministry also includes sport. Like the tourism ministry there is an outstanding payment to be met - one for the Palma Arena - which falls under the culture ministry.

Ministry allocations are otherwise all up. The biggest spender - at 1,726 million - is health, followed by education with 1,000 million. An increase of over 25% to 228 million for the land ministry is mainly due to spending on social housing. The ministry of the presidency is to get 13% more (to 28.3 million), which is to cover the costs of the election in 2019.

Aetib has the highest budget of the agencies. In second spot is the Abaqua water agency which will receive almost two per cent more (100.5 million euros). All the agencies will have larger budget, although some rises are comparatively low. The Balearic Symphony Orchestra, defined as an agency or public company, has an increase of 1.74% to 7.7 million euros.

In terms of salaries, the director of the anti-corruption office will receive the most - 96,662.50 euros, followed by the head of the audit committee on 91,801 euros. Ministerial salaries remain unchanged. President Armengol has the highest salary - 67,399.69 euros.

Money for investing in infrastructure and other projects will mean Majorca benefiting to the tune of 526 million. Minorca will get 116 million, Ibiza 140 million and Formentera 21 million.

Of some specific budget items, there is a 16% decrease to 1.08 million for the maintenance of the royal residence, the Marivent Palace, and there will be a ten per cent rise to 7.1 million related to emergencies. This includes programmes of public awareness and maintenance of weather stations.

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