Former mayor bought coffee maker but failed to pay wages in Huelva.

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THE former mayor of Valverde, in Huelva, allegedly bought a LED television and a coffee machine for his office, despite owing town hall employees their wages. The town hall currently has a debt of €55 million and four months worth of salaries pending payment, greatly due to the expenses incurred by the former governing team.

The former socialist mayor, Miguel Angel Dominguez, who has now been named Junta de Andalucia Provincial Delegate for Public Works and Housing since he was beaten in the May 22 elections, spent €472 on the coffee maker, and €1,065 on the television, between December 2010 and January 2011, although he failed to pay the employees’ wages. There is a machine selling coffees at €0.50 available to all staff, just metres from his office door.

These were also two of the few bills which were paid on the spot, while the former ruling team has left behind debts of all sorts, from grants to local charities to the bill for the local nursery’s catering service. The new Partido Popular mayor, Loles Lopez Gabarro, who beat the mayor out of his position after 32 years of socialist rule in the town, has said both items will be donated to a local association for the disabled.

She is also looking into other bills for more than €4,100 from last year’s August fair in the town which was allegedly spent on promotional fans, and for €6,000 for tickets to bullfights for local authorities at the 2010 fair.

There is another unpaid bill for €4,000 which is apparently for ‘increasing the installation of mobile filing cabinets’ in 2010, for which the company, Alcom S.A., is only requesting the VAT, leading the current mayor to believe the bill is fictitious.

Between 2006 and 2009, Valverde Town Hall paid for dozens of meals through their land and housing company, Givsa, which finally went bankrupt, amounting to €21,000 in a single restaurant which belonged to the father of one of the socialist councillors. Their bills included mixers, cigars, liqueurs, expensive wines, ham, prawns and top quality meat and fish dishes.

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