C.L.A.R.O. held its 11th Annual General Meeting in the Asturias Restaurant on 18 November against the background of uncertainties resulting from the Brexit referendum.

A hard Brexit which endangered access to free public health care and pension levels would have severe consequences for British citizens individually and since British residents in Orihuela Costa account for nearly 50% of the resident population, if large numbers were to leave Spain and return to the UK, the consequences for the local economy would be very serious.

In the interests of preserving these rights, CLARO urged all British citizens living in Orihuela Costa to make sure they have “residencia” status and are registered on the local municipal register (padron).

The Annual General Meeting considered a Report on the activities of the past year with notable successes including the firm commitment to complete construction within the next 2 years of the long delayed Orihuela Costa Emergency Services Centre with a 24/7 local police station, the sealing of the burning waste tip in Campoamor which no longer emits toxic fumes and the increase in the number of polling stations from 3 to 7 which will greatly facilitate the exercise of the right to vote at the next municipal elections in May, 2019, at which time British residents will still have the right to vote.

C.L.A.R.O.’s aim is to continue to fulfil its role as the only political party dedicated to promoting and defending the rights of residents of Orihuela Costa as the minority Popular Party government continues to deny Orihuela Costa adequate services and investments despite receiving some 60% of its revenue from the coast.

Two specific priorities are a purpose built Cultural Centre including an auditorium for at least 500 people and rooms for the many local groups and the scandalously delayed pedestrian footbridge over the AP-7 motorway between Lomas de Cabo Roig and Cabo Roig where residents risk their lives daily by dodging traffic.

Other priorities will not be ignored by C.L.A.R.O. including its campaign to Save Cala Mosca, the last green area on the Orihuela Costa sea front.

The Annual General Meeting also renewed the present members of the Executive for a further year, the only change being that Paul Piccio stands down after a successful year as President to be succeeded by Karl Rainer Failoni, a long standing member of the Executive Committee, of Austrian nationality with fluent English as well as his native German and knowledge of Spanish.