Costa dels Pins. | Joan Socies

At the Tuesday meeting of the cabinet, the transfer of powers for the coasts from the state to the Balearic government was given formal approval. The new arrangement will start on July 1, 2023, and the Balearic government will receive 1.3 million euros for this, plus eighteen people employed by the Costas Authority's delegation in Palma, the offices and six vehicles.

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What this means is that the regional government will be responsible for managing the public-maritime domain on land and the territorial sea, up to 12 nautical miles from the coastline. The government will, for example, be in charge of authorisations, such as sunloungers/parasols and anchoring areas, and managing public concessions under the national Coasts Law.

The Balearic environment minister, Miquel Mir, has made clear that the transfer will not alter Costas Authority decisions regarding beach bars or restaurants or dwellings within the public domain that do not have concessions or are deemed to be occupying this domain in breach of the Coasts Law. One of the most high-profile cases concerns El Bungalow in Ciudad Jardín, which is under threat of demolition. Although Palma town hall is initiating a process to give the restaurant protection, it remains to be seen if this will actually countermand a Costas' order.