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Volume 66

Cristina Sanchez
 
1Casa News from Spain - No. 84
 
 
A Topical Digest of News and Views from the Andalucia Area in Spain
Cristina Sanchez 
1Casa REALLY Affordable Homes 
Calle Cantarranas 1, Álora 29500, Málaga, SPAIN 
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UK Callers call FREE 0800 081 1939
In Spain Call 902 021 888 both 24 hours
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Reward for not drinking
 
 
Córdoba City Council are going to give prizes to young people for not drinking at the weekend street parties. Anyone who wants to take part is given a breathalyser test at the start and the end of the evening and those who pass are offered a choice of prizes that include a 20 euro petrol token.
 
Disco still floating
 
 
A disco boat which has recently been in Benalmadena boatyard for repairs has been refused permission to return to the harbour. The port authority took the decision after complaints about late night noise and because there are allegedly outstanding payments.
The owner of the boat is currently in discussion with the port authorities to restart activities.
 
A white village should be white
 
 
House owners in Competa have been told that they have to comply with the local regulations to have the exterior of their homes painted white. They have until the 15th August after which the council will fine anyone who ignores this rule.
 
Coín and the Big Apple
 
 
The mayor of Coín has put forward a plan for the Coín local police to be twinned with a police station in New York and is now looking for council approval. The idea came about after local police chief, Salvado Santos, paid a visit to the 400 officers at New York´s 18th Precinct.
 
No answer for road chaos
 
 
For the whole of last week drivers were trapped in tailbacks on Malaga´s eastern and western bypasses. The worst congestion was between 7.30am and midday and the Traffic Department has no idea why. There were no major accidents and the university is now closed for the summer so if anything it would be expected that the roads would be quieter. However, if you were one of the people stuck in the traffic jam it may be no consolation to know that Trafico is as bewildered as you are about the cause.
 
Residents protest over more building in Alhaurin
 
 
Foreign residents annoyed by the over-development of Alhaurin el Grande attended a protest meeting at the Alhaurin Golf Club last week. They were particularly angered by the proposed new urbanisation of 1,500 homes for a local beauty spot, Barranco Blanco. Rod Perry, a Barranco Blanco resident was heading the fight to stop final approval being granted for these homes. He was joined by Trina Mahon, a resident of La Mota, where 2,500 homes and a golf course have been approved but where they hope they can scale it down. The point was made that an examination of the infrastructure would show that there were already water problems for existing residents.
Ms Molina, a planning lawyer, said that they would be employing their own company to assess the environmental and infrastructure impact on the town, adding that the current and proposed build would double the size of Alhaurin.
 
Mayor of El Valle de Abdalajis asks to triple housing density
 
 
The village of Valle de Abdalajís wants to provide for future population growth by multiplying the land available for construction by 3. The local authority has just approved the proposed PGOU development plan which reserves a total of 1,128,000 square metres of land for construction. This in theory would provide housing for triple the present population of 2,948 residents, according to the 2005 census.
 
The Mayor, Tomás Gómez, explained that Valle de Abdalajís currently has 400,000 square metres of urbanised land with around 1,000 properties. He warned that the proposed plan could experience changes once it had been inspected by the Provincial Planning Commission at the Junta de Andalucía, although he was confident that its main essence would be maintained.
 
“We hope they don’t cut down the residential land too much because we believe the proposed growth is reasonable”, explained the Mayor. The main areas set aside for future development are on the Chorro side of the village and alongside the álora and Antequera roads. The new PGOU also envisages legalising some groups of houses that were built on country land years ago, such as Yesera or El Mirador. Finally after a long wait there is space reserved for an industrial estate.
 
 
110 million year old spider web found in Spain
 
A team of researchers of the American Museum of Natural History reports the discovery of a Cretaceous-era spider web encased in amber along with some captured insects.The amber, found in Spain, preserved 26 strands of silk; many of them connected to one another. Glue droplets are visible on the web and prey includes a fly, a mite, a beetle and a wasp.The amber was dated to about 110 million years ago and is the oldest known example of a web with trapped insects, according to Grimaldi.
 
This finding confirms that spiders and complex, sticky webs date back early enough to have affected the evolution of the most diverse groups of flying insects, the researchers said.
 
Don´t stop the sun screen protection
 
 
Recent reports in the press about the dangers of sunscreen having an effect on thyroid, particularly in women, have frightened a lot of people into thinking of not using it any more.Let us put this in perspective for you. Here in the Costa del Sol we have a lot of sunshine and need sunscreen not just to stop sunburn and premature ageing of the skin but to help prevent cancer. These experiments have only been done on rats and there is no evidence that sunscreens have the same effect on humans. 
A spokesman for the British Thyroid Association said that the findings were interesting but agreed that people should not be put off using sunscreen yet. Our advice - just come and look at the people who live here, laid back, relaxed, brown, healthy and unwrinkled because of the use of sunscreens.
Don´t let the press, who have little to do in the summer, frighten you with scare stories about early findings in a research programme on rats that have been given intensive doses of chemicals.
 
Residents protest over more building in Alhaurin
 
Foreign residents annoyed by the over-development of Alhaurin el Grande attended a protest meeting at the Alhaurin Golf Club last week. They were particularly angered by the proposed new urbanisation of 1,500 homes for a local beauty spot, Barranco Blanco. Rod Perry, a Barranco Blanco resident was heading the fight to stop final approval being granted for these homes. He was joined by Trina Mahon, a resident of La Mota, where 2,500 homes and a golf course has been approved but where they hope they can scale it down. The point was made that an examination of the infrastructure would show that there were already water problems for existing residents.
 
Ms Molina, a planning lawyer, said that they would be employing their own company to assess the environmental and infrastructure impact on the town, adding that the current and proposed build would double the size of Alhaurin.
 
Radiotherapy could be safer
 
Researchers at Manchester University have developed a new technique that could be used to shield healthy bone marrow stem cells from the effects of raidotherapy. Although there is a lot more work to be done before they start trying it with patients the potential is enormous. Often patients receiving radiotherapy for cancer have healthy cells affected as well. If the further research is successful this technique could not only allow higher doses to be used to kill off the cancer cells but protect the healthy cells at the same time.
 
Spain is on the top ten list of rich people
 
A recent report called `The World´s Wealthiest´ stated that Spain is now officially the home of some of the world´s wealthiest people. 1,500 Spaniards are listed as multi-millionaires with personal wealth in excess of 24 million euros. The USA has 2.67 million multi-millionaires while the UK has 500,000.
Some of the reasons for Spain appearing in the top ten are quoted as a surging real estate market, a favourable stock market and an increase in general wealth in Spain.
 
Corpus Christi
 
Thousands of people took part in the Corpus Christi celebrations across Andalucia with many joining the Bishop of Malaga, Antonio Dorado Soto as he led the procession through the streets of the old town. Alora had it´s own celebration with a procession that included Calle Erillas where the houses were decorated with flowers and banners and an altar was built. The procession was followed by hundreds of Alora residents singing as they went.
 
Building stopped in Tolox
 
A development of 2,000 houses had all building stopped at Tolox on Monday where the Mayor and a number of councillors have been denounced. Until the judge determines whether the land is non-building land or not the area has been cordoned off and no activity is allowed to take place. The Mayor insists that the land is legal building land and all licences issued are legal and correct, while the Andalucian government claims that as Tolox doesn´t have a master town plan this is debatable. In the meantime the developers are standing by in the hope that they will be able to recommence the development which will triple the number of residents if it goes ahead.
 
Alora Feria
 
Alora Feria will be held on the 2nd to the 6th August 2006 and will be featuring some well known Spanish singers as well as groups, dances, concerts and the usual stalls and fairground. More details of the programme will be featured in a later newsletter.
 
The new points system for the Spanish Driving Licence
 
The following are the details of the new points system for the holders of a Spanish Driving Licence that starts from 1st July 2006. Each licence starts with 12 points except new drivers with less than 3 years driving and those who have previously lost a licence, who only get 8. Anyone who loses no points for 3 years will be awarded an extra 2 points and another point for the following 3 years if they are still penalty free, up to a maximum of 15 points.
When any of the following offences are committed points will be lost and if you lose your licence you may be required to take a test to get it back.
 
Two point offences: Speeding: Over the limit by from 21 to 30 kph. Parking: Stopping or parking in bus lanes
Lights: Driving without lights or using them incorrectly. Motorbikes: Carrying a passenger under the age of 12
Radar: Using banned anti-radar equipment
 
Three point offences: Speeding: Over the limit by from 31 to 40 kph. Change of direction: Making an illegal turn. Distance: Not keeping a safe distance between vehicles. Mobile phones: Using them manually while driving
 
Four point offences: Speeding: Over the limit by more than 40 kph. Alcohol: Between 0.25 and 0.5 mg/l in the blood. Motorways: Using unauthorised transport. Manoeuvres: Dangerous ones
 
Six point offences: Speeding: Over the limit by 50% (180 kph on motorways) Alcohol: Over 0.5 mg/l
 
At the moment EU citizens with a licence from their own country cannot be penalised by the point system. However plans are afoot and the powers that be are already talking about a common European licence for all that would have the points system attached to it. Although they are talking about 2013, if they are talking about it  now it probably will happen. Remember how we thought we would never give up our lovely blue passport!
 
Legend Aaron Spelling dies
 
Legendary American TV producer Aaron Spelling – who created hit shows like Charlie’s Angels, Dynasty, and Starsky and Hutch – has died. He was 83.
Spelling died at his Los Angeles mansion yesterday after suffering a stroke on June 18, his publicist Kevin Sasaki said.
 
Spain's second unconvincing win against Saudi Arabia
 
This scarcely seemed conceivable after the impressive 4-0 drubbing they handed out to Ukraine in the opening match and it is true that with this victory Spain qualify for the knockout stage, top of their group but coach Luis Aragonés was forced to bring on several first-choice players as fans  started to whistle.
 
Saudi Arabia played well organised football, and their star goalkeeper Mabrouk Zaid almost single-handedly kept them in the game. Unfortunately they also showed they had learnt many of the worst habits from more well known teams, unnecessary backheels and several obvious diving displays spoilt their otherwise good efforts.
 
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