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FODSA to withhold payments to cover Ionian Islands municipal debts

09 Jan 2024 / 10:28

CORFU. The Corfu Mayors point out that the payment presupposes reciprocity.

A unanimous decision by the outgoing administration of the Ionian Islands FODSA (Solid Waste Management Organisation) puts six municipalities of the Ionian Islands Region in an unfavourable position for the collection of their outstanding debts to the Waste Management Organisation, with the total debt amounting to 2,573,787.44 Euros. The Municipality of Zakynthos has the largest debt, owing 1.8 million Euros, while the municipalities of North Corfu, South Corfu, and Paxos have financial obligations of over 700,000 Euros each.

Collection of the total debts of the six municipalities is being sought through the direct withholding of monies via DEI from the unified reciprocal fee for cleaning and lighting collected by the municipalities. Alternatively, monies may be withheld from the Central Autonomous Resources, and it remains to be seen whether the new administration of the Organisation will implement the decision made by its predecessors in early December.

These funds relate to outstanding amounts for the year 2022 until September 2023, which should normally be paid in quarterly installments as the annual contribution of each municipality to FODSA.

The municipalities in the Ionian Islands Region owing to FODSA are as follows: North Corfu (381,107.50 Euros), South Corfu (327,900.39 Euros), Paxos (17,103.03 Euros), Lefkada (8,367.55 Euros), Meganisi (1,341.30 Euros), and Zakynthos (1,837,967.67 Euros).

Without result

The issue of municipal debts had previously concerned the outgoing administration of FODSA, without yielding any results. Just before handing over the reins to the new Administrative Council of the Regional Solid Waste Management Organisation of the Municipalities, a unanimous decision was made on 4/12/23 (based on the legal provisions) to send a request to DEI for the direct withholding of the overdue debts of member municipalities to FODSA. The details for each municipality are outlined in the decision.

Furthermore, according to the same decision, in case some municipalities do not receive reciprocal fees from DEI that can cover their obligations to FODSA, verified through a relevant document from DEI, a request will be sent to the Minister of Internal Affairs for the withholding of these specific debts from the Central Autonomous Resources of the municipalities.

Non-existent provision of services

However, as the Corfu mayors point out, the payment also requires reciprocity, which they haven't seen in all previous years, describing it as a non-existent provision of services from the side of the Organisation. "No document regarding this decision of the Organisation has been communicated to us so far," North Corfu Mayor, Giorgos Mahimaris told Enimerosi. "Throughout all these years, there has been no favourable policy towards us to receive compensation. Financial participation should also have a reciprocal character, which we haven't seen. The provision of services is non-existent. Nor has the waste treatment plant in Corfu been established, while all bins and composters are our own."

On his part, the Mayor of Paxos, Spyros Vlachopoulos, stated that the amount corresponding to his municipality is not significant and will be paid. He added, however, that the issue is to have the corresponding infrastructure for waste management.