ALTEA’S former town council has challenged claims of a 1.8 million euro overspend on the municipal sports facilities. The Palau d’Esports Costa Blanca-Vila d’Altea, to give the complex its full name, was inaugurated in February 2007. It was built in the record time of 153 days.
Miguel Ruiz, of the Partido Popular (PP) who was mayor at the time, denies there were any irregularities when awarding the 5.3 million euro contract. But the PSOE-Compromis-Altea amb Trellat alliance, that took over the town hall after the May 2015 municipal elections, disagree.
The contract was originally put out to tender for 4.6 million euros, but went to a temporary consortium that put in a 5.3 million euro bid. This flouted Public Administration laws, argues Altea’s present Finance Councillor, Pere Lloret.
Regulations oblige the council to accept the lowest bid or one equalling the original estimate. Lloret argues this alone should have led to the Public Prosecutor and the government becoming involved.
“But the project cost another 1.8 million euros, on top of the 5.3 million euros for modifications that were neither clarified nor justified,” he added.
When the three-party alliance took over at the town hall, the consortium’s claims for more than one million euros in interest payments, drew his department’s attention to the contract. The council is taking legal action to solve the issue.