Susana Díaz, Minister of the Presidency and Equality of the Junta de Andalucia, met with the mayors of the Almeria municipalities affected by floods last week in the headquarters of the capital.
She said that she was on a fact finding tour of the region and that she needed to hear of the situation first hand from those mayors who were dealing with the problems of their constituents on a daily basis. She said that she understood just how serious the situation was and that she had already spoken to many affected residents who have lost everything and who are desperately looking for urgent solutions to their problems.
She said that there is already 12 million euro on the table from the Department of Development to restore much of the flood damaged infrastructure in the province while additional funding is currently being sought from the EU Emergency Fund and central Government.
The Mayor of Albox, Jose Garcia, demanded the immediate establishment of a "compensation fund", while Vélez Blanco and Antonio Cabrera, said they had hoped to see some "concrete solutions". The more skeptical mayors of Cuevas del Almanzora, Huércal-Overa, and Pulpí, all said that "hope is the last thing to go" before their meeting with Susana Diaz.
But considering the funding that has been put forward so far by the Andalucia Board is just 12 million euros, while there are individual councils like Huércal-Overa asking for 50 million, simply to resolve the problems in it's own municipality, many residents could have quite a long wait before they receive any government aid.
The meeting is said to have been the first official assessment of damages by the municipalities, which will serve as basis for raising additional support.
On closing the meeting the minister expressed the hope "that the various authorities will put all of the necessary resources quickly in place to deal with the consequences that have led to many families losing everything they had.”