The Basque Government expresses its concern over the situation surrounding the Constitutional Court
- The Basque Government will distribute 13 million euros in subsidies to almost 70 media outlets in the Basque Autonomous Community
- The Governing Council regulates access, functions and the regime applicable to Ertzaintza medical and technical personnel
- The Governing Council approves several matters related to Education for a total amount of 125 million euros
The spokesperson for the Basque Government and Minister for Culture and Language Policy, Bingen Zupiria, appeared at the usual press conference after the Governing Council, together with the Minister for Education, Jokin Bildarratz.
The spokesperson, Bingen Zupiria, expressed the Basque Government’s concern about the situation surrounding the Constitutional Court. He recalled that the Lehendakari, at the opening of the judicial year, had already called for “the common good over partisan, corporate or associative interests” with the aim of overcoming the institutional crisis that was being experienced at that time with regard to the renewal of the judicial bodies.
Furthermore, Minister Zupiria pointed out that this crisis has been the subject of attention from European institutions - “something that could jeopardise the credibility of the Spanish state in the eyes of its European partners”.
For many months, in the opinion of the Basque Government spokesperson, a worrying message has been sent out as a result of the inability of the political forces to reach agreements for the renewal of the judicial bodies, and with the events we have experienced in recent days “the situation has worsened even more”. “These are decisions that seriously question the scenario of democratic governance”, he pointed out.
From the Basque Executive’s point of view, we are seeing the clearest expressions of the politicisation of justice. He thus expressed his concern at the refusal of a political party to assume a parliamentary majority. “With different decisions, it is preventing the renewal of institutional bodies that, in part, depend on these parliamentary majorities,” he pointed out.
Bingen Zupiria also stressed that all this is taking place in a scenario of partisan and political confrontation, and “all the signs point to a time of total confrontation that will extend throughout the coming year as a result of different elections”, which is not a suitable scenario for the renewal of institutional bodies.
“There is a serious risk that politics will be perceived as an instrument that is not capable of resolving the problems of citizens; and that this is happening when the legitimacy of democratic institutions is being called into question is particularly worrying,” he concluded.
The Minister of Education, for his part, has announced several matters approved today by the Governing Council related to Education. The total sum exceeds 125 million euros and covers different actions.
Among the most relevant, the allocation of 54.4 million euros to give continuity to the creation of Digital Classrooms in public schools; the approval of a total of 14.5 million euros to promote research initiatives of excellence, aligned with the Ikur Strategy, promoted by the Department of Education; and the contracting of various school transport routes for public schools in Bizkaia and Araba, for Infant, Primary and Secondary Education pupils.
AGREEMENTS OF THE GOVERNING COUNCIL
As usual, the spokesperson, Bingen Zupiria, provided information on other agreements of the Governing Council, including the following:
Today, the Government has approved a new Decree on the development of the Ertzaintza’s Scale of optional and technical personnel, which regulates access, selection process, functions and regime applicable to this highly specialised professional group within this police force. This is a scale that can only be accessed with certain academic qualifications to support the Ertzaintza in highly technical tasks that require a high level of specialisation, such as information technology, analytics, specialised or scientific forensic techniques, archiving, communication or psychological assistance, etc.
In addition, the Government has today approved a direct subsidy to Elkargi to reinforce its Technical Provisions Fund with an amount of €600,000, and which aims to facilitate the granting of guarantee operations by this guarantee company. According to the spokesman, the government is in line with the need to reinforce the possibilities of financing for companies and professionals because it considers this to be an essential tool for improving the competitive environment of the Basque business sector.
The Government has also approved an agreement with the City Council of Orduña to grant 1.6 million euros in aid for the urban regeneration of the Landatas and Dolores Madaria neighbourhoods, covering 126 homes. The urban regeneration project is part of the Berpiztu extraordinary investment programme, which has 180 million euros to promote disadvantaged regions or Preferential Action Zones (ZAP).
The Governing Council also gave the go-ahead to the renewal, for 2023, of collaboration agreements with organisations and educational associations that care for minors in care in the three Territories. 8 million is earmarked to guarantee this service.
Finally, two topics were addressed in connection with the Department of Culture and Language Policy.
On the one hand, the Governing Council has approved that the Basque Government allocate an additional 1,250,000 euros to the capital increase of the company “Tenedora Museo de Arte Moderno y Contemporánea de Bilbao, S.L.” given that the Extraordinary Board of Directors of the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao held in October agreed to make an extraordinary contribution for the acquisition of the Museum’s own collection.
And on the other hand, today’s Council took note of the aid that has been distributed among the media throughout 2022 through different calls for proposals. In total, it amounts to 13 million euros. On the one hand, 6 million euros will be allocated to general daily media, whether Basque or operating in the Basque Country, in order to contribute to their economic sustainability and to the fight against disinformation. On the other hand, the Department of Culture and Language Policy will allocate 12.7 million euros over three years (5% more than in the 2019-2021 call) for media exclusively in Basque, to guarantee their activity and continuity, as key agents for the normalisation and promotion of the use of Basque. Lastly, there is the call for subsidies aimed at media that mainly publish in Spanish, whose objective is to promote the presence of Basque in the content they offer. 1 million euros have been earmarked for this call.