SPAIN’S National Statistics’ Institute (INE) informed Calpe that on January 1 this year, it had an official population of 22,725.This was 1,092 than in 2018 and an improvement on 2016 when the number of residents fell below 20,000.This affected Calpe’s budget, as the cash that the national government transfers to municipalities is based on population and that year Calpe received €2.7 million less. The increase in registered residents was the result of the efforts of the Padron department, run by Hilde Backaert, to persuade local residents to register. Many people were under the impression that they were already registered on the Padron. Others were unaware that, as foreign residents, they are required to renew their entries on the Padron at regular intervals. Since 2016 series of campaigns targeted both foreign and Spanish residents with media announcements, street advertisements, leaflets, letters in five languages and even home visits, reminding the local population of the advantages for themselves and the municipality itself of registering on the Padron.Thanks to the Padron department, the official population has risen and with it, the money that Madrid transfers to the municipality to guarantee essential services.