The Ministry of Housing and Urban Agenda takes a step back and withdraws the project to modify the Land Law to avoid a parliamentary defeat of the PSOE. A text that Sumar rejected and that also did not have the support of the PP, which the Ministry headed by Isabel Rodríguez has sought in recent days.

He did so minutes before starting a plenary session in the Congress of Deputies that had to vote on the amendments to the entirety presented by three Government partners, Junts, Esquerra and Podemos. And if they went ahead, the project returned to square one. If the text had been voted against, it would have been the second clash between PSOE and Sumar in a week, after the vote against the Law against pimping by the group led by Yolanda Díaz, believing that it “punishes” prostitutes.

Sources from the Ministry assure that this decision has been made “in these hours prior to the start of the electoral campaign” to “guarantee its processing.” That is to say, they want to separate the project from the European election campaign that begins tonight and they do not consider it lost. Specifically, the Ministry headed by Isabel Rodríguez explains that “the Government has requested the withdrawal from the agenda of the plenary session of the bill to modify the Land Law to guarantee that this regulation is not affected by the electoral situation.”

And they insist that it is a rule demanded by the City Councils, in a letter signed by the Spanish Federation of Municipalities and Provinces (FEMP) by the autonomous communities and that the Xunta, chaired by Alberto Núñez Feijóo, claimed it a couple of years ago. In addition, they point out that the construction sector and developers are asking to change the law to unblock a hundred urban planning plans. In this topic we tell what Housing’s arguments were to try to move forward with a law that is now postponed without a date.

Housing defends the project and criticizes the PP

The aforementioned sources mark this defense of the text because “it is a bill that was processed with the utmost speed to respond to the need to promote and expand the public housing stock in Spain.” Also, it seeks to “guarantee the legal security of urban developments.” And he argues that the text implied “more guarantees of environmental protection and that it meets the objectives of the 2030 Agenda.”

And he criticizes the PP for rejecting the change in the norm. “Once again, we see a Popular Party with a lack of sense of State. “They have prioritized their electoral interests over a demand from city councils and autonomous communities, to favor the development of public housing.”

The Minister of Housing and Urban Agenda has pointed out the PP as responsible for the text not going forward and does not consider the text lost. Of course, not as a bill, but rather it is left in the hands of the parliamentary groups to present it as a bill but when the June election date passes.

“I regret the stoppage,” he acknowledged. “I hope we can amend it, after the European elections,” said Isabel Rodríguez. “The sector asked the PP to make that effort” and instead they have “taken advantage of the opportunity to bash the Government. “It does not serve the general interest.” Rodríguez has also assured that the PSOE and the PP were negotiating partial amendments to the text during the past week.

However, sources from the PP leadership assure that “there has been no negotiation” and that the PSOE “has asked for support without negotiating.” “They called us on Tuesday to ask about the vote” and “we did not tell them the meaning of the vote,” they clarify.

Before, in the halls of Congress, Esquerra spokesperson, Gabriel Rufián, assured the media that Housing “has not followed the path of dialogue” in the project to change this law. “They have asked us questions” and that they have found out “from the press about the withdrawal” of the text. “Trusting at this point in the PP seems reckless to me on the part of the PSOE,” he stressed. And the leader of Podemos, Ione Belarra, has indicated that it is “the third time” that the purple formation “for this reform, two in the Government.” “It was a red line for Podemos,” she told the media.

Sumar had already announced at the beginning of the week that he was going to reject the law, because the Socialist Party had not addressed any of the observations they raised when the text was approved in the Council of Ministers. He criticizes that, as proposed, the modification of the law restricts access to public action, that is, the possibility that any individual can present resources to urban plans, even if they are not directly affected. “The need to restrict access to public action is not shared and it is considered more appropriate to maintain it in its current terms and not limit the possibility that citizens currently have to demand the expulsion from the legal system of illegal urban plans in defense of general interests”, indicate from Sumar.


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