Antoni Noguera faces a lawsuit over the holiday rentals ban. | Archive

Palma mayor Antoni Noguera has insisted that he will not go back on the banning of apartment holiday rentals in the city. In a statement issued on Sunday, the mayor said that the measure was in the general interest in order to provide access to housing. He was responding further to the announcement that a lawsuit against him has been admitted. It was lodged by the Fevitur national federation for holiday rentals.

In Noguera's view the lawsuit is an attempt to supplant municipal sovereignty. It is a "democratic anomaly". The town hall, he stressed, had the obligation and need to establish a system of zoning for apartment rentals in accordance with Balearic legislation. The decision to introduce a ban was taken after reports showed the negative impact on coexistence and also the direct association between holiday rentals and the price of accommodation.

The mayor suggested that the Fevitur legal action was a "manipulation of the law" and went on to highlight the fact that in July 2017 the town hall had backed a popular legislative initiative on behalf of the Palma federation of residents associations. That initiative, in the form of a petition signed by over 6,000 people, pointed to the risks to coexistence because of holiday rental apartments.

The Palma measure, Noguera added, was pioneering and one to defend the general interest above the financial interests of a few.