“I and my directors reject the proposed salary increase to correct the anomaly of the income being lower than that of the general directors and chief of staff. “I will not allow demagoguery and populism to fill the most social budget in the history of Cantabria.” In this way, the president of Cantabria, María José Sáenz de Buruaga (PP), withdrew the intention to increase his salary by 20%, he and his advisors in the Executive that he manages, and as stated in the bill that was presented for processing this Tuesday in the Autonomous Chamber after being approved by the Government Council.
The Government of Cantabria has approved a budget full of unknown and conditional income
Buruaga’s announcement came hours after a salary increase of almost 12,000 euros per year for the president and members of his team was revealed just minutes after the Advisor to the Presidency, Isabel Urrutia (PP), appeared in an emergency press conference to justify the need to implement this important increase in their salaries.
In this way, through a message on his social networks, Buruaga wants to settle the controversy and the heat of criticism that was generated after this step was announced: that the Minister of Economy, Finance, and European Funds, Luis Ángel Agüeros (PP), was excluded after the bill was registered in the Parliament of Cantabria this morning.
The withdrawal of the proposal was received by the leader of the opposition, the socialist Pablo Zuloaga, with a harsh criticism of what he understood to be this government: “This is not populism, this is not demagoguery; these are your budgets, and we have seen your intentions. Earn more, pay less, and work little,” he wrote on his Twitter account.
From the Regionalist Party of Cantabria (PRC), which last week reached a budget agreement with the PP to approve the accounts, they described as “excessive” the 20% salary increase allocated in the budget bill for 2024 to the president and the members of the Council of Government and asked to “reconsider it”, because it comes “at a bad time”, when the majority of the population “is in a bad time as a result of the continuous increase in prices.”
In addition, they asked the government for explanations for “hiding the magnitude” of this increase during the negotiations carried out to reach the agreement signed on Thursday to guarantee the approval of the budget for the processing of parliamentary
The accounts prepared for next year show that the president of Cantabria moved from collecting 65,555 euros from his predecessor, Miguel Ángel Revilla (PRC), to 77,634 euros gross per year (+18.4%), and the director from 62,575 to 74,581 euros (+19%), figures that the PP will have to change in the parliamentary process if the bill is only valid for a few hours since it was approved this Tuesday.
Repeat for a few hours
The presidential decision came just a few hours after his presidential advisor defended the move in front of the press, publicly announcing that the increase in regional representatives was narrowly delayed because, in that case, it would have been 10%. The budget bill also includes a salary increase for all parliamentarians of 6,000 euros per year.
Urrutia bases his argument for the rise of the government on the paradox that senior positions of trust earn more than councilors or presidents. The difference between them “is growing bigger every year, which means that now a counselor earns 6,000 euros less per year than his chief of staff.”So this step will change a situation that is “anomalous, incomprehensible, lacking any logic, and unique to the entire national territory,” he said.
Urrutia also emphasized that Cantabria is “the only autonomous community” where the president earns less for his work than his chief of staff or head of communication for the Government of Cantabria, a general director, a general secretary, or the manager of a public company. “Against more political responsibility, against more legal responsibility, against more patrimonial responsibility, because the councilors and the president of the government answer to our assets, the lower the salary,” he said literally.