Ramón Trujillo heads the electoral list for next May 28 of the confluence between Izquierda Unida, Podemos and Sí se puede in Santa Cruz. Unidas Sí Podemos (USP), which is what this confluence is called “to the left of the PSOE”, was already attempted in 2019, but then the formation led by Pedro Arcila decided to go separately, losing all the representation it had achieved so far . It seems that this time there has been enough understanding so that, as Trujillo defends, the parties with the capacity to represent have decided to unite in elections in which everything indicates that they will be very even in the capital. Trujillo is convinced that “there will be no change in Santa Cruz without United Yes We Can.”
-Sí se puede has joined, now yes, IU and Podemos, although Equo-Los Verdes has chosen to form part of another coalition…
“I think what is important in this case is that the three parties that have shown themselves capable of obtaining representation separately in Santa Cruz, are now going together. The left to the left of the PSOE, for the first time, is completely united, the one that has the capacity to represent, the one that added 15% of the vote in 2019, and I think that this is a positive message for the progressive electorate, which must mobilize taking advantage of the fact that no progressive vote will be left without representation”.
-Are you completely convinced that you are going to get that representation?
“It already happened in 2019 when the division with Sí se puede was in place, so now it is obvious that we are going to be the only ones with representation to the left of the PSOE, so concentrating the progressive vote in our coalition is going to be essential to make it possible a change in Santa Cruz. There will be no change without Unidas Sí Podemos in Santa Cruz, without the reinforcement of our coalition and without the mobilization of the leftist electorate”.
-That is one of the problems that is always blamed on the left…
“Indeed. That is why we insist that it is something fundamental in Santa Cruz to promote change, because we see that, in the neighborhoods where the right is rampant, they have a higher electoral participation than those in the neighborhoods where the left is rampant, so it is also essential to get the message that through institutional representation and municipal power, the people most forgotten by politics have a greater capacity to put the institution at their service”.
-What differentiates them from the socialists?
“The greater representation of United Sí Podemos in Santa Cruz, there will be more housing policies, which implies more protected housing, more social investment, there will be a change in the model in terms of mobility, because we are not intervened by the powers that be. that prevent alternative mobility, we are going to demand and support more investment in employment plans and good execution. We are also going to propose the remunicipalization of parking lots or home care, confronting those who mistreat Santa Cruz with their privatized management. I think that only United Sí Podemos can do that.”
-All these measures would distance Santa Cruz from being the most liberal city and from the recognition it has received these days…
“That’s how it is. That is something to be said as well. Santa Cruz privatizes water management and now recognizes their right, over the next ten years, to take some eight million in profit, which comes from the water bill. People pay more for water so a company can make more profit and rich people get richer. As you have privatized the service in the economic freedom index, improvements, if you had direct management you would not have to take out eight million for benefits, the receipt could be cheaper and of better quality, yes, you would worsen in the economic freedom index ”.
-One of the things that this index values is the reduction of taxes…
“In the case of Santa Cruz, CC and PP boast tax reductions worth six million. The benefit that the company that manages the water takes is eight, more than all those tax reductions. In addition, when you look at the execution of the budgets of five or six years, the money that they stop collecting is always the same. Of course, they make increases that are very well kept quiet, such as that they have raised the IBI to the Hospital de La Candelaria with an amount of 250,000 euros or to the Fairgrounds or to the TEA, to other institutions that they complain about. Santa Cruz can boast of doing some things because there are others who enter what Santa Cruz does not want to enter, and the mayor can put up billboards with which he has rehabilitated 4,000 homes because 80% of this rehabilitation is paid for by the Government of Spain, the Government of the Canary Islands and the Council.
-And what is USP’s proposal for Santa Cruz?
“Santa Cruz has to compensate and correct all those neighborhoods that have been without a mayor for decades. All those areas of the city, with a degraded urbanism, lack of endowments, significant accessibility problems. I believe that there is a part of the city that must be made greener and more sustainable, an urbanism that not only introduces more housing in the city but also disperses it throughout the municipality. We must address the touristification of the city, incompatible with the right to housing. You have to make a city where you have to reconsider that the spaces are occupied by people and not by cars. And then Santa Cruz has some very powerful territorial contrasts, with great deficiencies in certain neighborhoods that need an injection of social resources, support for the family, housing, also aid for study, for young people, who also need a cultural policy.
-If you arrived tomorrow at the Mayor’s Office, what would be the first thing you would do?
“Increase the amount of subsidized housing for social rental, with formulas such as implementing prefabricated housing, as well as buying housing to put it up for social rent immediately. The other priority would be to increase social investment. We propose 15% of the non-financial budget, with more personnel for the UTS. And finally, starting to work on the development of sustainable mobility, a change that is noticeable in a reasonable amount of time”.
Leave a Reply