Benidorm receives recognition as a Tourist Municipality of the Valencian Community

Toni Pérez highlights that "Benidorm has addressed adequately everything established in the new law"
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Benidorm receives recognition as a Tourist Municipality of the Valencian Community.
Benidorm receives recognition as a Tourist Municipality of the Valencian Community.

Benidorm is the first Tourist Municipality according to the Regulation of the Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Law

A veteran aspiration that began to take shape in 1963 and that saw its first reality in 1998, has been confirmed this morning: Benidorm has received the Resolution of the Presidency of the Generalitat by which it is again granted recognition of the status of Municipality Tourist of the Valencian Community.

The mayor Toni Pérez communicated the resolution to the municipal political groups early in the morning and after that he highlighted at a press conference that "seeing Benidorm become a tourist municipality, from the state level, is and continues to be a historical claim." At the level of the Valencian Community, the mayor explained “in 2000, Benidorm was recognized under Law 3/1998, 20 years ago now”. It was that, he said, "a law that for the first time undertook the tourism regulation and regulation of the Valencian Community"

In this regard, Pérez pointed out that "already then, the regional legislator was aware of the important municipal component of Tourism" since a great majority of services are provided with a transcendental impact on the competitiveness and commercialization of the sector. That law, he stressed, "established compensatory figures for the financial effort."

In May 2000, he recalled, Benidorm was declared a Tourist Municipality and "Benidorm since then was able to benefit from these compensatory mechanisms and has signed agreements that from 2000 to 2015 reported a figure of more than 9 million euros."

The new Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality law of 2018, he explained, addressed a new approach and established a new regulation through the new figure contemplated in the Tourism Statute from a new approach where, he said, “protection and sustainable development prevailed. of the resources". Decree 5/2020 of January 10, explained Toni Pérez, "barely 8 months ago addressed the new regulation and established a period of two years for municipalities like Benidorm to adapt to the new criteria."

But Benidorm, Pérez stressed, "could not wait this time." The request for the new recognition was submitted to the plenary session on February 24 and thus, after receiving the resolution of the Generalitat, "Benidorm has passed all the verification procedures, the concurrence of criteria and compliance with obligations."

In this way, the mayor pointed out, "Benidorm becomes the first tourist municipality in the Valencian Community that has adequately addressed everything established in the new law." Benidorm "requires, deserves and obtains that recognition again" which "forces us to improve even more," said the mayor.

The mayor recalled that this recognition has also influenced the fact that Benidorm has been a pioneer "since 2016" in the work to be an Intelligent Tourist Destination, "the first certificate in the world since 2018" and issues such as "collaborative governance with compliance with the ODS and the 2030 Agenda, as a way of understanding political management from the local Administration ”.

For the mayor, it has also been decisive "Benidorm's ability to be the locomotive of tourism to go through safer routes, sustainability and commitment to the planet"

Pérez considers key in this entire process of the Tourist Municipality "that this statute regulates what we consider a right, supramunicipal financing that recognizes the economic effort that destinations such as Benidorm make throughout the year."

Thus, he pointed out that the objective is constituted by “resources that financially contribute to the sustainability of the tourism industry and to compensate the local administration for that special effort it makes”. With this Regulation and the new figure, Pérez stressed "we are facing a new order that is established for tourist municipalities" considering it as "a response to financing directly proportional to what we do in employment, social and sustainable development of our territory."

The mayor explained that although the Regulation does not ensure a specific procedure, "it does indicate two ways of compensation: through an agreement or through specific lines that will be regulated through a cooperation fund." Regarding this aspect, he pointed out that "we are waiting for the economic endowment with the hope that it is sufficient."

The only municipality that currently has this recognition is Benidorm, trusting the mayor that "it will be an incentive for other municipalities", trusting that by 2020 there will be an economic item in the Generalitat's budgets to serve it.

He recalled that "Benidorm stopped receiving these funds in 2014" and hopes that this agreement "will be clarified in which line it will be addressed" because "our expenses have increased a lot in 2020". And in this vein, Toni Pérez pointed out that "an item for fiscal year 2020 could already be computed in the Generalitat's Budgets."

The compensatory funds would go, the mayor concluded, "to expenses of tourist offices, maintenance and conservation of resources, police and citizen security, street cleaning, quality in destination and collaborative governance, urban furniture, orientation to the intelligent tourist destination and tourist planning."

The mayor highlighted the work with the utmost loyalty and collaboration with the Autonomous Administration to be "an avant-garde destination as we have always demanded and are now also required for the new times."