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WHERE HAVE ALL THE CARS GONE?

In the small, rural, Northern town of Aguilar de Segarra, the tranquillity of life may seem to flourish, with peace and quiet and a traditional feel, only a few houses blot the scenic landscape, there are no shops, the streets are empty, where the 250 …

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Streets jammed with cars?

In the small, rural, Northern town of Aguilar de Segarra, the tranquillity of life may seem to flourish, with peace and quiet and a traditional feel, only a few houses blot the scenic landscape, there are no shops, the streets are empty, where the 250 residents know and greet each other, with each passing day, as time stands on pause, away from the hustle and bustle of modern day life.

That idyllic scene may come into question though, particularly the empty streets, when you consider that, according to the records in the town hall, every single resident of the town has 228 cars each, which are clearly not parked outside their homes, nor are they on the streets, and yet, the figures are in fact real.

In total, the town hall has a record of 60,000 vehicles registered in the town on the outskirts of Barcelona, but it is not the case of the residents actually owning them. Far from it, the municipal vehicle register is for the purpose of collecting the equivalent of road tax. Here, car owners have to pay between just 10 and 15 euro per year for tax, which is perfectly legal and acceptable under laws set out by the Spanish government.

In fact, the neighbouring town of Rajadell, just a short drive away, if you can work out which car to take and then drive though the theoretical congestion, has 500 registered residents and 40,000 cars on their books.

It is considered though that most of the vehicles are not privately owned, but are registered on behalf of hire and leasing companies, taking advantage of a legal tax avoidance, with at least ten companies taking advantage of the fact that the road tax in these small towns is ten times cheaper than the cost of registering in the area´s capital of Barcelona. For the 100,000 cars shared between these two towns alone, we´ll let you work out the maths, but either way, it is another case of corporate tax avoidance, which seems a popular move in present times, which governments allow to happen whilst the lesser man foots the bill.

Incidentally, the town of Aguilar de Segarra is already well known in financial and governmental circles, as in 2011 it also gained the top position in terms of having the most debt per capita in the whole of Spain, with a figure of 9,000 euro per inhabitant.

Filed under: http://www.theleader.info/article/38639/

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