Reply To: Long term, things don’t look too bad


@charlie wrote:

I’m sorry Peter, but I can’t agree with you on this one.
You say: “I know of many, many large decent and honest developers who have recieved building licenses and have begun building only to be stopped by the town hall or provincial government whilst they investigate how or why planning was given. It usually transpires that the local town hall had no right to give building licenses or had wrongly processed the application”.

Any ‘decent and honest’ developer worth his salt would ensure that his plans were in accordance with the PGOU before he applied for a building licence thereby not needing to corrupt a town official . And thereby not needing to put himself in the exposed and risky situation of having his development halted.

Why did the local town hall have no right to give certain building licences?
Because they were situations where the building application went against the Junta’s PGOU.

Why did the Junta (provincial government) stop construction/start an investigation?
For the same reason as above.

Why did the town hall issue such building licences?
Because brown envelopes were passed.

For me, any developer caught up in a halted project paid a backhander to the town hall to get his licence.
Developers got away with it (brown envelopes for projects that went against the PGOU) for years, but because the can of worms has been well and truly opened, they’re all now crying ‘foul’. Hopefully when this practice grinds to a halt through arrests and/or they know they just can’t get away with it anymore, it will be one step towards turning the tide against corruption.

Charlie, my post was aimed at my knowledge of developers and town halls in Murcia/Costa Calida.

The CDS is a very different province regarding PGOU/JDA and methods by developers.

Murcia is years behind when it comes to the methods of the big developers in CDS.

The Murcia provincial government is becoming more savvy regarding planning applications, probably from national pressures.

3 or 4 years ago, virtually anything within reason was accepted due to Murcia provinces aims to become a major tourist and relocation area. They would de-classify agricultural land virtually on request. Now they choose the areas for planning consent in the same way as JDA. This has caught out many of the experienced developers who now have to understand the planning departments vision rather than just creating it through applications of their own choosing.

Yes of course the brown envelope mentality has always existed and probably always will, however, with the recent PW case, the reproccussions of being caught are far more serious compared with the innocent “good old days”.

Developers will just have to become more attuned to modern European planning practices. Which probably means they will have to be more descrete in the way they cosy up to the town halls. Spanish developers will have to visit their cousins in the UK to get a real grip on price fixing cartels though!