Cyprus Mail

Government keeping local authorities on a ventilator, president says

The government can no longer provide a lifeline for local authorities President Nicos Anastasiades said on Wednesday addressing the controversial bill reforming local government  which is opposed by municipalities.

Often having to deal with municipalities finances, Anastasiades said: “This is a problem that is passed on to the government that either with direct funding or guarantees, essentially keeps municipalities and local councils on a ventilator.”

Municipalities were complaining the new bill would end up disrupting the system and fail miserably in achieving the economies of scale it promises.

Anastasiades however pledged that he would be discussing with them to see what they had issues with, something he already talked about with Interior Minister Socrates Hasikos on Wednesday, he said.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the Ayios Andronikos and Athanasia square in Tseri he said works in the area would begin by 2016 or 2017 the latest, adding that they had saved some €1 million.

Overhaul of local administration is a condition stemming from a bailout agreement with international creditors. It is designed to cut administrative costs through a clustering of services and a reduction in the payroll. Cyprus is already behind schedule.


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