ALMUÑECAR council has launched a campaign aiming to persuade an estimated 1,200 people who live there and have not joined (or renewed on) the padron (residents register) to do so.
At a presentation of the campaign, local Mayor Trinidad Herrera and Tourism Councillor Rafael Caballero explained that the campaign will be running in Almuñecar and La Herradura.
“It is directed both at expatriates and foreign residents and at Spanish people who had their homes here registered as second residences but spend most of their time here,” the mayor explained.
The National Statistics Institute reported following a recent census that there are more than 1,200 people, including 160 non-Europeans, who have not renewed on the local padron. This, the mayor explained, means the authorities need to check whether they still live in the area or not.
Joining (and renewing) the padron is vital as it allows the government to plan social and public services which are fundamental to the running of the town, the mayor explained, and this campaign has been launched to remind people of the need to sign up or renew their registration.
Almuñecar and La Herradura currently have 29,200 people registered. Spaniards make up 75 per cent and the second-largest group is of Britons (5 per cent) followed by Germans and Belgians (2 per cent each).
Yet during the summer months there are three or four times as many people in the area. This, Herrera explained, means the council has to put a lot of effort in to guarantee everyone is provided with the services they deserve with funds available restricted due to the low population numbers registered.
More people on the padron, she continued, would mean more money from the central and regional governments for services including policing, cleaning, transport, medical services, etc.
More than 5,000 leaflets have been made with information on the benefits of joining the padron and how to go about it in English, Spanish, German and French and four information panels put up in town.