Catalan officials will finally collect extra pay of 2012

The government spokesman, Íñigo Méndez de Vigo, announced on Friday that the Ministry of Finance has authorized the payment of the pending 20% extra pay for Catalan officials suspended in 2012 at the height of the budget cut.

The Government of the Generalitat has been paying the extra pay to Catalan public employees in small rates. At the end of last year, it was announced that this March the last rate will be paid. But the application of Article 155 of the constitution impeded this decision. Now the central government will activate the mechanism to authorize the payment.

Catalan officials have witnessed the tensions between central and regional governments in recent months. Before the application of Article 155 at the end of last October, the Ministry of Finance decided to intervene in the accounts of the Generalitat before the secessionist drift. Further tensions arose between both administrations to see who took charge of the payrolls of the officials. During October and November, the Generalitat paid the salaries of public employees with the remainder that remained and had not blocked the Treasury. But in December, the central government took over the payroll.

Now also the last outstanding payment to return the extra Christmas pay frozen in 2012 will be made.

Christopher Lee from Domenech Abogados

On Thursday night at 6pm, we were happy to have International Lawyer Christopher Lee with us at the studio. He specializes in International Private Law with a focus on child abduction and gave us a comprehensive overview of this extensive topic.

There are different kinds of child abduction, but Christopher Lee and his multilingual team provide services to parents that feel to be victims of a criminal offense. For example, a mother who goes on a holiday with her son and decides not to come back, because she thinks this is better for her child. Christopher Lee explained how this can be unlawful and demonstrates other factors that influence the judgment of particular cases.

If you want to know how Christopher Lee, who is originally from Sussex,  started his career in sunny Barcelona and what he tells us about specific cases, have a listen:

Catalan pre-registration schools might include option of choosing Castilian

The Generalitat had so far avoided giving families the option to choose a school enrollment of 25% in Spanish and now the government is studying to include this option.

The Ministry of Education is considering including the so-called language box in the pre-registration brochures of the schools in Catalonia. It is a section that allows families to choose if they want their children to study at least 25% of the content in Spanish. Until now, the Generalitat had avoided this formula, endorsed by different court decisions and included in the Organic Law for the Improvement of Educational Quality since 2014. With the application of Article 155, educational competences are passed on to the Government of Spain, among others.

According to El País, the Secretary of State for Education, Marcial Marín, said “We are in it,”, this Thursday in a press appearance when asked about the enrollment in the Catalan school, whose application period opens in the coming weeks. “In any case, we are sensitive to the problem and we will announce a decision soon,” added Marín.

Until now, schooling Catalan children in Spanish was a very difficult process that included the request for financial aid. Respective families had to ask the Generalitat for this particular type of schooling and, in case of no response, they proceeded to request the 6,000€ from the state. Children had to be enrolled in private centers to be taught in Castilian. The state had six months to respond and, if granted, discounted the number of transfers to the budget of the Generalitat.

Meet Ro Bradley Big Room House

Every Thursday from 9-10pm CET we welcome Ro Bradley Big Room House to Barcelona City FM 107.3.

Bradley Clark was born in England and is a dual citizen of Australia, though his family is from Hungary, Australia and Canada, so a colorful mix. Right now, he is in Toronto, spending a lot of time at Trench Recordings with “the wizard Lionel Pedro”, as he puts it. He will be in the UK in March for some secret events and meetings and will be back to North America for a single release tour with Sam Callahan. And finally, he will be back to Barcelona mid-June!

He tells us his “immediate plans are to record, record, record. I’m working with Sam Callahan in the studio, which is a dream come true. I’m further working with a few unknown artists, who are amazingly talented.”

“I really enjoy radio hosting primarily and this year I will be doing a lot more live mixing, so far I’ve been very production based. I do a lot of tracks for other artists and labels, so finally this year I will have enough of my own tracks to do a full set! I really like playing different styles and in my mixes on Barcelona City FM, and future live events, I like to play super dirty beats! Also, introducing new artists to the airways is a passion of mine.”

Concerning Barcelona, he really appreciates how welcoming and artistic the city is and calls it “the best city in the world with the most beautiful people”, where he’d love to move.

For his next gigs, he keeps things mysterious. But he is having his debut album coming out this summer and will be on tour. For more information and new tracks keep up-dated via  Barcelona City FM!

Written by Laura Kabelka
[email protected]

Madrid: Chaos with ambulance transfers due to computer failure

A problem in the SUMMA ambulance management and coordination computer system, specifically for non-urgent scheduled transfers, has caused hours of waiting since the weekend. Waiting times are up to six hours. At the moment, the most affected hospitals are La Paz and Ramón y Cajal, although any center may suffer delays while the computer failure remains.

According to the Ministry of Health, the error occurred last weekend, after the data of the old computer program was transferred to a new one. During this transfer, several errors occurred that are responsible for the defective recording of transfer requests. This is causing delays or even non-arrivals of ambulance cars.

The computer failure happened at the same time new companies began their subcontracted activity with the transport in ambulances.

At the hospital in La Paz, around a dozen patients were waiting up to six hours  for their transportation to arrive yesterday. Some had to call a pricy taxi to make it to an appointment, since the ambulance did not arrive.  The patients further reported a lack of information during their waiting time, both on the part from the hospital and the ambulances.

To compensate for the situation, the Health Community from Madrid announced to increase the number of desk operators that coordinate the ambulances from six to 22.


Anna Klevtsova: Klev&Vera International Law Firm

This Wednesday morning we had Anna Klevtsova, Managing Partner of Klev&Vera, with us at Barcelona City FM 107.3. Two years ago, she started her International Law Firm with another partner, Helen Pino Vera. The firm is situated in the center of Barcelona, Carrer de Valencia, and now has a team of 10 people.

What they are very proud of is that each of their lawyers and legal assistants has an international background, they speak several languages, studied and worked in many different countries, which is important for their highly international clients. The lawyers are committed to social values and participate in the free legal aid programme of the Barcelona Bar association, for example.

Anna Klevtsova started her legal career in 2000 as a civil servant, and later worked in several European cooperation projects related to International Law and Human Rights in Russia and Central Asia.

Have a listen to what Anna Klevtsova told us about the NIE and what should be considered when opening a company in Barcelona:



Is Madrid using economic news as propaganda?

The Financial Times designated Catalonia to be the best region to invest in Southern Europe just yesterday.  The Financial Times drew this conclusion for both 2018 and 2019, by examining economic potential, human capital/lifestyle, profitability, connectivity and business climate, comparing Catalonia to 450 other European regions and cities!Catalonia was ranked first, followed by Madrid, Lombardy, Istanbul and Lisbon.This is great news for the autonomous region of Catalonia and a far cry from the negative message communicated in much of the Spanish press.

Xavier Hernandez, a lawyer and businessman from Barcelona, has posed the question as to why Catalonia has been chosen as such a great place to invest, while the Spanish Media has depicted it as a complete economic disaster triggered by the recent independence campaign?

“After repeating the election for a second time, Spanish Media talk about companies moving away from Catalonia, tourists are supposedly not coming anymore and a lot of investments are predicted to go to other parts of the country. For these developments, the independence fighters are being blamed”.

Since October 2017, Catalonia is portrayed as going downhill. The impacts are said to affect all sectors, the national politicians have been denounced by the Media. But Hernandez sees this as a propaganda strategy, to spread fear, whilst in fact the regions’ GDP has been growing.

“The strategy is to create this clima in order to justify that people are in prison for the acts of October 1, justifying that their actions have been devastating for the Catalan economy and politicians deserve to be in jail, and only the action of the Spanish governement will save the Catalan economy.”

In his opinion, “the Spanish Media will not announce positive results regarding the Catalan economy, but prefer to keep the idea that their political situation is only damaging the economy and the independence fighters are destroying their own country.”

“The few platforms actually talking about Catalonia’s growth bring up the argument that it is still too early to see the real damage, but who will remember that all Media were lying when we finally reach the moment where the impacts can be measured?”
Pro-independence Catalans definitely will, while walking up the busy streets filled with tourists. “Because they realise that the Spanish Media are only trying to create a climate of sadness, showing pictures of people fighting each other, violence in the streets, and the economy going downhill.”
The independence debate continues. Visca Catalunya!

Written by Laura Kabelka
[email protected]

Jordi Perez: CEO of GOBAI

This Tuesday morning at 9am we had Jordi Perez, CEO of GOBAI Group, with us. GOBAI Group is a property project management firm that specialises in technical projects and gaining approval from authorities for activities and facilities in Barcelona and surroundings.

The GOBAI Group includes engineers, architects and technicians with professional experience in managing renovations and property projects and have an extensive network of collaborators especially within estate agencies.

Jordi Perez himself is an Industrial Engineer and tells us that the first challenge when starting a renovation project is to find “the location and the premises. It is not easy because a lot of people want to open a restaurant or a shop in Barcelona and the competition is quite hard. You have to put a lot of effort into finding a location.”

If you missed him you can watch him on our Facebook Live Stream or just click below.


Satellite Terminal in El Prat before 2026

The on-going growth of Barcelona-El Prat airport has forced the Ministry of Development to draft a new master plan that responds to the situation. Constructing a satellite terminal is the main point of action to absorb the rising number of monthly passengers registered by the airport.

Aena’s (Spanish airports and air navigation) construction, which was not completed nine years ago in previous developments of the airport, will allow greater capacities of both passengers and planes. The Minister of Development,  Íñigo de la Serna, visited El Prat today to announce that it will be put in operation before 2026.

It will be a satellite terminal, similar to the one that exists in Barajas (Madrid),  where an automatic train is connected to Terminal 1. Due to this installation, there will be 17 new positions for aircrafts and the spots will be given to intercontinentally employed aircrafts in particular. “It is a traffic that needs to be enhanced,” the minister stressed, since despite adding new routes each year, the bulk of activity in Barcelona continues to be low-cost airlines.

The construction of the new terminal will involve an investment of 200 million euros and 255 more for the automated connection for passengers and luggage between Terminal 1 and the satellite building. Development foresees a total investment of 690 million euros until 2026 at the El Prat airport.

Written by Laura Kabelka
[email protected]

DJ Katty on Drive Time

We welcome charismatic DJ Katty every Monday to Barcelona City FM Drive Time! Starting from 5pm, you can immerse in the hottest mix of UK Garage and House for two hours. Should you miss him do not despair! He is also playing on Saturday from 11 pm!

DJ Katty loves UK Garage/House and told us his affection dates back to when “I grew up in London listening to pirate radio around 1998 with all the underground sounds that got massive in the UK. During that time, I had lots of DJ friends that helped me climb higher, teaching me how to mix.”

He further reveals “I love entertaining people and being an international performer. I keep coming back to Barcelona for a change from DJing in London and the UK. And because the people love the good vibes from UK House and Garage.”

His goals are to get even bigger bookings and keep doing loads of events – whether it be in the UK, Barcelona or other beautiful spots. Among his up-coming events is his show at Garage442 on March 31, a must-not- miss Saturday night event here in Barcelona.

Have a listen via:

Written by Laura Kabelka
[email protected]