A stage record budget, which reaches 23,033 million euros and focuses on Health and Education: these are the first accounts of the President Isabel Díaz Ayuso, which he presented this morning at the Royal Post Office. The total amount of regional budgets grows 14.8 percent compared to the last ones that were made, it is the highest in the history of this autonomy and includes European funds amounting to 1018 million, that should arrive next year.
In addition to Education (which exceeds 5,300 million euros in budget) and Health (which rises to almost 8,800 million), the Madrid accounts prepared by the Minister of Economy and Finance Javier Fernández-Lasquetty emphasize the economic recovery and employment. They include the reduction of 0.5 points in the autonomous section of personal income tax for all Madrid taxpayers -which will be approved in the next Governing Council- and the aid to mothers under 30 years old who will receive from January -500 euros per month – to promote the birth rate. There will be a game of almost 30 million euros for this purpose.
In health matters, its objectives will be the improvement of Primary Care, the reduction of waiting lists -with 65 million euros planned for this purpose- and the beginning of the reforms in the Hospital de la Paz and the extension of October 12 . A new Mental Health and Addictions Plan will also be developed, with priority in the care of children and adolescents.
More FP and fewer ratios
Regarding Education, it is committed to Vocational Training -with more than a 125 percent increase in the item- and to the reduction of ratios in the classrooms, which will begin to be applied in September 2022. Also college fees will go down. The budget in this area increases by 16.4 percent: there will be 156 million euros to build new schools or improve current ones, and the full implementation of free enrollment in public early childhood education centers is contemplated in the 0 to 3-year stage, one of the requests made by Vox and for which 31 million euros are allocated in the 2022 budget.
Transport’s priorities for next year are to undertake the expansions of Metro lines 3 and 11 and build the Valdebebas interchange.
Data endorsed by AIReF
Counselor Fernández-Lasquetty has emphasized his Government’s intention to continue meeting the objective of budgetary stability and debt control, while not raising taxes but “guaranteeing the best services for Madrileños ». In addition, he highlighted how in the case of Madrid, the AIReF -Authority Independent of Fiscal Responsibility- gives the endorsement of the table of macroeconomic calculations (GDP, unemployment, demand, etc.) on which these budgets are based, and contrasts it with what has happened with the General State Budgets, which, they assure in Sol, “the figures are corrected by AIREF, the Bank of Spain, the IMF …”.
In terms of employment, there are more than 650 million euros to promote entrepreneurship and self-employment, and they will invest 280 million in measures for economic recovery, such as the elimination of regulatory obstacles, the improvement of competitiveness in the industry or the attraction of foreign investment.
City of Justice
Justice increases its budget to almost 1,000 million, and part of it will be dedicated to the infrastructure plan and the Ciudad de la Justicia project, in Valdebebas, resurrected in this legislature. There will also be more and better means for firefighters and the body of forestry agents, and the Madrid 112 Emergency and Security Agency will be modernized.
Another priority is access to housing, for which they are intended different items that go to the My First Home Plan -to guarantee mortgages for people under 35 years old-, the Young Rent Plan, or the Live Plan.
The Ministry of Family, Youth and Social Policy sees its budget increased by almost 20 percent: it reaches 2,100 million and reinforces services dedicated to the elderly or dependents, and for the care of victims of gender violence and their children. And in matters of Culture and Tourism, increases to 279 million euros -a 41 percent increase- the budget for tourism promotion and recovery of this sector, especially hit during the pandemic.
Senior salaries frozen
Finally, the 2 percent increase is included for civil servants, which is already included in the General State Budget Law, and the salary freeze for senior positions is repeated for the eleventh consecutive year.
This is the first budget of Isabel Díaz Ayuso since she became president of the Community of Madrid, in 2019. In fact, it is the first after the one approved by President Ángel Garrido in 2019. Since then, it has been extended exercise by exercise, by the difficulties in reaching agreements between the two government partners -PP and Cs in the previous legislature- and the third investiture partner, Vox.
On this occasion, although the agreement should be only on two sides, between the PP that governs with a large majority of 65 seats, and Vox, which has 12 votes, the ‘white smoke’ has not yet arrived for this pact. After weeks of negotiation, the talks have not come to an end and they will continue until the last moment, during the period of parliamentary processing of the regional accounts for 2022. Vox thus forces the machine trying to achieve, in exchange for the four abstentions that the PP needs to carry out its budgets, to extract some concession from the Ayuso Executive.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism