Most of the debt owed by Almeria City Council to the water company is due to a small group of residents not having paid their bills.
According to the mayor of Almeria, Luis Rogelio Rodriguez, the debt totals €3,150,000 but 86.5% of that is held by a small group of residents in the poorest neighbourhoods of the town.
After reiterating that nobody would be cut off if they didn’t have the money to pay their bills and they had warned the Social Security about this situation, Manuel Guzman, councillor for Urban Services, stated that of the 86,546 users only 3,195 were cut off in 2013.
He also said that among the debtors are the University and the Junta de Andalucia – they have not been cut off despite having the money to pay.
At the moment, if a resident or entity cannot pay their water bill, the council pays it for them as it feels nobody should be cut off from such a basic service.
The opposition is contesting this protocol as they say some entities, including the University and the Junta, are taking advantage of this situation.