Refuse and water high on the agenda
Speeches at the swearing-in ceremonies were along the same lines as those during the election campaigns. There were heartfelt thanks and talk of the much-vaunted unity and cooperation at the swearing-in ceremonies one week before the new authorities take over responsibility.
Just as during the election campaign, broad references were made to the problems with the details left as understood. The critical moment requires magnanimity and a period of grace to be allowed but the new authorities are not new. They are made up mostly of well-known figures in local government and politics who have participated (and in some cases played a defining role) in one way or another in recent local governance.
So we didn't hear any self-criticism probably because they think that Corfiots have short memories. Waste management is a minefield despite the efforts of the outgoing authority to remedy the situation and pass on improved services to the incoming authorities. Something, for example, that didn't happen in 2014 when the new authority inherited an already oversaturated Temploni facility, a Lefkimmi facility immune to administrative measures and a study for the Integrated Waste Management facility at an unknown location which hadn't been paid for - the Nikolouzos administration paid. The lack of a final recipient for the waste was a threat then as it is now, whether or not there is a new facility.
The situation is the same with water supply. The water supply project has crossed every party political and governmental ocean - more than any Homeric hero - since the '80s (last century, in other words) without reaching its Ithaka. Every year - and this year much more dramatically - our water table is crying out that it is coming to the end of its reserves. Reminding us of how much time has been wasted by representatives of almost all the political parties in local and national governments.
These issues, and plenty of others, are awaiting the authorities in the low period following the tourist season. It isn't a matter of course that the solutions are an issue of unification as they require different approaches and expectations and responsibilities need to be attributed and accepted.
If today were 1 September , we would wish you a Good Month but we will wish instead - Have a Good Term in Office!