- The approval of this budget limit is an "essential" step for the preparation of the accounts of the Government of Catalonia of next year.
- The spokesperson of the Government, Patricia Plaja, announces that the nightlife will reopen next October 8 and people who want to access will have to prove with the COVID certificate that they have the complete vaccination schedule or have a negative diagnostic test.
- During today's meeting, the Government has analyzed the "unsustainable situation" experienced by users of “Cercanías” (commuter rail line) and has demanded that, while the transfer of the service to the Government of Catalonia does not occur, the Spanish State "must provide the necessary solutions" to solve both the temporary and structural problems suffered by the railway network in Catalonia.
- The Government celebrates the release of President Puigdemont and calls for an end to repression
- The Government also creates the Extraordinary Additional Fund 2021 for local entities, with an endowment of 100 million euros
The Government has approved today the non-financial expenditure ceiling of the Government of Catalonia for 2022, which is set at 29,326 million euros. This is an "essential" step for the elaboration of the budgets, as explained by the spokesperson of the Government, Patricia Plaja, during the press conference after the meeting of the Executive.
This amount sets the limit for the allocation of budgetary resources for the year, in accordance with the revenue scenario, compliance with budgetary stability regulations and the criteria of the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010).
The calculation of the expenditure ceiling is obtained from the estimated revenue of the Government of Catalonia for the year 2022, which includes the amounts of the advances of the financing model communicated by the Ministry of Finance and the compensation for the loss of resources that the change of the Immediate Information System (SII) of VAT has meant for the autonomous communities. This last figure has not yet been officially communicated and that is why the Department of Economy and Finance has made an estimate according to the information available.
It should be recalled that, since the Ministry of Finance suspended the fiscal rules due to the pandemic, it established deficit reference margins, instead of the deficit targets themselves. Thus, at the meeting of the Fiscal and Financial Policy Council, which took place on July 28, it set a deficit reference rate for the autonomous communities of 0.6% of GDP. This reference rate is the one that determines the amount of financing for the Liquidity Fund and the one used to calculate the expenditure limit for 2022.
The nightlife will reopen in the early hours of Thursday to Friday and must present the Covid certificate or a negative test.
The Government spokesperson has also announced that nightlife will be able to reopen indoor spaces from next October 8 with a permitted capacity of up to 70%, dance floor and mandatory wearing a mask. While waiting for PROCICAT (Territorial plan for civil protection in Catalonia) to finalize today the exact parameters of the resolution that includes this reopening, Plaja has advanced that people who want to access the premises must prove that they have the full vaccination schedule showing the Covid passport available in “My Health” App and show the identity document. Those responsible for the premises will be in charge of certifying the validity of the documentation.
Those people who want to access the nightlife offer in Catalonia and do not have the complete vaccination schedule, must be able to prove with a negative test (PCR or antigens) that they do not have the disease. "In this way, nightlife will reopen with all the health guarantees, but also with legal guarantees", said Plaja. In this sense, the Government is clear about the need to have the validation of the High Court of Justice of Catalonia to use the certificate, given the potential affectation of fundamental rights and also because of the repercussions of its implementation.
On the other hand, the spokesperson Plaja also explained that, if the epidemiological data allow it, it is expected that in the coming weeks the attendance at universities will resume 100% and the capacity in sporting and cultural events will be extended to 80%.
The Government demands the Spanish State to solve "the unsustainable situation" of “Cercanías” while the service is not transferred to the Government of Catalonia.
In this morning's meeting, the Government has also addressed "the unsustainable situation" that thousands of commuter train users in Catalonia have been living for years, which has been aggravated in recent days by the train drivers' strike "with scenes that are not typical of a modern and advanced country".
The Government has returned to claim the management of this "crucial" service and has demanded that, while this transfer does not occur, the Spanish State Government "put the necessary solutions to provide the best service to users of this public transport, as well as the will and willingness ".
"It is urgent to be able to have a regular, punctual, safe and reliable commuter rail service and this is what has been demanded today to the Spanish Government", explained Plaja. In a letter that the president Aragonès has addressed to President Pedro Sánchez, the Government has urgently requested all the detailed information from the Government, both of the proposals to solve the specific situation of these days and to solve the structural problems.
The spokesperson Plaja has assured that the Government will always "watch over" the right to strike, but has denounced the non-fulfillment of the established minimum services, which is undermining the right to mobility of the Catalans in a quality service. For Plaja, this right has been denied for too many years to all "Cercanías" users due to the negligence and laziness of the Spanish State.
"The lack of investment that Catalonia suffers in mobility is unquestionable and for decades requires an effective, efficient and real solution. If the government really wants to solve it, clear proposals are urgent in the framework of the Bilateral Commission Spanish State-Government of Catalonia and addressing all derivatives, also in labor matters", said the spokesperson.
The Government celebrates the release of President Puigdemont
During the press conference, the spokesperson Plaja has celebrated, on behalf of the Government, the release of President Puigdemont in Sardinia and the suspension of the extradition procedure.
"This is a new European discredit, not to say international ridicule, of Spanish justice. It is necessary to put an immediate end to the repression by the Spanish State and this Government will demand it as many times as necessary, wherever necessary, until it is achieved", she declared.
Finally, the Government has approved the Decree Law creating the Extraordinary Additional Fund 2,021 for local authorities, with an allocation of 100 million euros. The objective of the fund is "to alleviate the loss of revenue of local entities due to the economic crisis generated by Covid-19", as highlighted by the spokesperson Patricia Plaja. Local authorities, city councils, county councils and the General Council of Aran, the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona for the area of Barcelonès and decentralized municipal entities will be able to benefit from this extraordinary fund.