“I doubt that the Montelarreina barracks is a reality”

Despite the "many needs" of the province and the great problem of depopulation, the president of the Zamora Provincial Council prefers not to waste time "in regrets" and move forward with concrete proposals that "can make us a benchmark.

“I doubt that the Montelarreina barracks is a reality”

Despite the "many needs" of the province and the great problem of depopulation, the president of the Zamora Provincial Council prefers not to waste time "in regrets" and move forward with concrete proposals that "can make us a benchmark." If this year the institution he presides over is going to turn to the 'Fromago' world fair to demonstrate the potential "of our cheeses and producers", it also boasts of having advanced in the "industrial and technological" commitment to the 'silver economy', that of care for the elderly in one of the oldest territories in the country. On the more political side of him, he assures that he did not think about leaving his position when PP and Cs "broke" at the regional level despite being the only provincial deputy of his formation, while the popular ones have twelve.

He trusts that the 'orange' formation "rise from its ashes" and does not see it as impossible to repeat the presidency.

-The First World Cheese Meeting is held in Zamora in mid-September. What do you expect from this event for the province?

-What we wanted with this initiative is to position the dairy sector in Zamora, which is one of the most important in Europe, and our cheeses and producers. His involvement, that of Zamoran society and that of the institutions is being maximum. We have estimates during those four days - from September 15 to 18 - of five million impact for the province and more than 200,000 visitors. We want Zamora to be a benchmark, to be known for our cheeses. It is going to be a great party with more than 300 stalls in a route of more than two kilometers.

-You said a year ago that “if we wait until 2050, I'm afraid there won't be anyone left here. The time is now» referring to depopulation. Are you less pessimistic today?

-I am optimistic by nature, but you also have to be realistic because we have very negative rates. We have opted to turn a weakness that we have, such as aging, into a strength with the 'silver economy' strategy. We want technology companies to come to our province, settle the population, create jobs and, above all, provide the best care for our elders. I have heard about depopulation for a long time in Madrid, but I would ask all those organizations to come to Zamora, Soria or León and talk to people in rural areas. In my case, I think the fundamental thing is to attract industry to the territory. In the Diputación we are working on lowering the provincial surcharge of the Tax on Economic Activities to zero, in addition to the fact that we have exponentially increased aid to entrepreneurs.

-Will the announced re-quartering of Montelarreina with the expected arrival of hundreds of families be a solution to this problem?

-If one day it becomes a reality, it will be a help, although not a panacea. Right now we do not know anything about the announcements made by the central government -in the words of the president and during the pre-autonomous electoral campaign-. The work was going to start quickly, but no one has contacted either this president or the Provincial Council. We announced that we would put up an important item to be able to help, but beyond the press announcements that the PSOE has accustomed us to, we know nothing. Hopefully it will be a reality, but today I am quite reluctant. We have no signs that it will be fulfilled.

-Another project that also seems to be at risk is the Barcial del Barco biorefinery. What is your diagnosis of what is happening?

-On behalf of the Diputación, the first thing we did is get in touch with its promoters. We offered them the solution of buying some land and giving it to them to develop the project and that is what we have done. We are waiting to see if they solve the investment problems. It would be a very important loss for the province if it does not go ahead.

-Are you surprised that this project is now judicialized?

-It always surprises me that things stop and more so in a province in need of industry like ours. I hope that everything is clarified, but what worries me is that the investment is there.

-There are several provincial political leaders who complain about the treatment of the Board and the Government. Do you join that lament? Do you think your case is worse than others?

-If we waste time in complaining, we waste it in being operational. I am not going to compare myself with other provinces, but we need help from all administrations.

-You decided to stay at the head of the Provincial Council when the PP broke with Cs to call regional elections. Did you ever think about leaving him, taking into account that he is the only Citizen deputy and that the popular ones are a clear majority?

-No. Here there is very good harmony and a great personal relationship.

-He is a member of the Autonomous Council of Cs. Honestly, what future do you predict for his party?

-We are in a difficult situation, but in politics from one week to the next things can change a lot. Where we govern, a great job is being done and that is going to be valued by the citizens. The party has lost credibility and that is why we are where we are, although I believe that it can rise from the ashes.

-And do you plan to continue in politics once the legislature ends?

-I haven't thought about it. I am very calm because I have my job outside of politics in a family business to which I would happily return. It should be mandatory for a politician to have a place to return.

-But repeating as president seems impossible.

-It was also complicated for Real Madrid to win the Champions League. Everything is possible in politics. Logically four years are short for you. If in the end we are not there, we leave a good part of the work on track.

-At level 0, how do you think the legislature will be?

-I hope that there is at least stability and that the economic policies are positive for the Community and that they are sensitive to Zamora.

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