The province’s fishing municipalities come together to attract EU aid

Burriana, Peñíscola, Vinars, Castellón and Benicarló are willing to add their funds to those of the Consell and the Provincial Council to hire an aid manager

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The municipalities of the province of Castellón that are part of the Local Action Group for Fisheries, GALP, since 2015 –Burriana, Vinars, Benicarló, Peñíscola and Castellón-, have been willing to disburse municipal funds to hire, together with the Provincial Council and the Generalitat Valenciana, a managing manager who is responsible for processing European aid aimed at the fisheries sector, especially necessary in this context of crisis arising from the pandemic.

Burriana Fisheries Councillor Vicent Aparisi explains that “at the moment we are in talks with the Generalitat and the Provincial Council on the economic issue, derived from the hiring of a manager among all the administrations that are part of that GALP”. “The truth is that we need the figure of a manager who is responsible for processing aid that is aimed, in part, at promoting the provincial product. This manager can not only help us with grants from public administrations such as the EU. Also derived from private entities,” Aparisi meant.

Currently, Burriana is studying the financial possibilities to contribute municipal funds to the hiring of this manager, “a commitment that we must acquire all the municipalities that are part of the provincial group”, as clarified by the fishing building.

Due to the lack of this manager, the GALP does not finish reaching the maximum yield for which it was created, as recently recognized by the Deputy for Rural Development, Santi Pérez, in a meeting with the Provincial Federation of Fishermen’s Guilds of Castellón. “While some confraternity, such as Burriana’s, has also received aid, the truth is that the GALP has not finished achieving the goals proposed. We hope that with the implementation of this manager, the situation will improve”, adds the edil of Burriana who, however, ensures that “collaboration with the provincial and regional government is maximum”.

For its part, the City Council of Vinars sees “with good eyes” the possibility of hiring a manager who can carry out the necessary procedures to access EU aid. The cooperation undertaken by the Council with the municipalities that are part of the inactive GALP, such as that of Vinars, is “well seen” by the Council of Agriculture and Fisheries, fronted by Councillor Anna Fibla. However, Fibla states that “this initiative also depends on other departments of the consistory so it will be necessary to coordinate it with them”. In addition, it is awaiting further formalities to be undertaken with the rest of the municipalities involved.

This Councillor appreciates the possibility “of having in the future a pelican ship, which collects dirt from the waters; the boat would come every certain period of time, thus taking into account the request made from the city’s own fishermen’s collective which has expressed concern about the increase in litter at sea’.

Fibla, on the other hand, highlights the interest in getting help from its department “with which to undertake initiatives that promote the marketing and consumption of fish, such as gastronomic days”.

Being President Miguel Castell – current Peñíscola Fishing edil and president of the San Pedro de Peñíscola Fishermen’s Guild – of the provincial federation was when the GALP was promoted. The City Council of this town is in favor of the GALP and the collaboration between administrations. Specifically, the City Council, for years, “already contributes an annual contribution to the brotherhood for the promotion of fresh fish from fish and for the improvement of fishermen’s protective equipment (purchase of protective clothing)”, he recalled.

As for the GALP, “the City Council has currently included in the group’s aid the project to improve the Museu de la Mar, with funding from the GALP, it is also planned that the Fira de la Mar – postponed by the Covid – and the traditional popular sardine of the main festivities, which this year has not been able to be held either, is expected to take place. Year after year we present projects for the promotion of the fishing sector,” Castell explained.

In the capital of La Plana they also profess support for this initiative and ensure that at the next meeting of the GALP the hiring of the manager will be put on the table.

CASTELLÓN, THE ONLY MUNICIPALITY STILL WITHOUT EDIL

The City Council of the capital of the province is, paradoxically, the only one that does not have a councillor responsible for Fisheries. At least those who have been part of the Local Fisheries Action Group since 2015 and have a fishing port. The head of the Agriculture area, Fernando Navarro, has no competence in the sector. Nor does there exist as such a councillor with that name. The closest building to the reality of fishing is Mary Carmen Ribera, deputy mayor in Grao or perhaps David Donate, Building for Sustainable Consumption. Pilar Escuder, responsible for Tourism, could be another susceptible candidate.

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