Fifteen months after the autonomous communities began to launch their housing rehabilitation programs financed with European recovery funds, aid is barely reaching citizens in drops. Asefave, the employer of window manufacturers, fears that the slowness in the processing of the application files will force them to return almost 500 million, which were delivered on account of the 2021 plans and which, according to Brussels regulations, must be engaged before next November. “We think it is very serious that a historic opportunity is being wasted,” said Eduardo Serradilla, a member of the organization, in an appearance before the media this Monday in Madrid to denounce the situation. The employers describe a bureaucratic labyrinth for applicants, with requirements that change from one territory to another, procedures that require submitting up to 24 documents and territories where, directly, the files have been paralyzed to “not generate lack of expectations.”

In total, window manufacturers have recalled, European funds provided 1,151 million in 2021 and 1,389 million in 2022 for items dedicated to rehabilitation. The money was presented as a great opportunity to renovate the Spanish housing stock and improve its energy efficiency. But at the moment it is not flowing with the ease expected by the manufacturers’ association, at least in programs 3 and 4, which were the ones that provided for actions at the building level and by individuals, respectively.

These programs, for the 2021 funds, which are the ones that have to meet the milestone of being committed in November, received transfers from the State to the autonomous communities for 500 million. Although the concern does not stay in that money. “We believe that one way or another they are going to compromise; The problem is that when this filter is unblocked in the processing of files, many of those submitted do not meet the requirements and are falling, so even if they are committed, they would not be 100% executed”, admitted the director of Asefave, Pablo Martín .

Territories with applications closed

The situation of uncertainty described by employers is widespread. Only Castilla-La Mancha has presented the 2023 plans for both programs. In Catalonia, Navarra, Galicia and the Valencian Community, the 2022 application period closed and has not been reopened, although the last two have said that they will do so shortly. Madrid has expanded the allocation of program 3 (the one intended for entire buildings) but it has not done so with 4 and window manufacturers stress that “more than 24 documents are needed for the application.” In Aragón, which admitted to having received many requests, the application process was paralyzed in February in the province of Zaragoza because the volume exceeds the money that has been received. “False expectations should not be generated in citizens, technicians and companies, while the requests received are resolved,” said the order published by the Aragonese Government. But all this contrasts with a general “lack of transparency”, according to the employers’ association, in which only Madrid and Valencia have provided partial data on how much money they have provided.

In short, window manufacturers, who point out that the replacement of these is the “star performance” and has been well received by citizens, regret that there is no standardized procedure for all communities, which ask for different requirements. This has made the procedures more expensive, which in most cases due to the complexity of the file are carried out by professionals who act as aid managers, since it requires knowing the peculiarities of each call. In general, according to Asefave, you pay between 500 and 600 euros for this service, for a total amount of up to 3,000 euros per applicant. But the fact that these are not received quickly, they complain, discourages other individuals from carrying out works and asking for help, which is especially affecting when it comes to a decision by the entire community of neighbors.

Part of the difficulty, admits the window shop association, comes from the requirements imposed by Brussels, which requires adequately justifying each euro of the funds available. This forces, for example, having to request energy efficiency certificates before and after the reform, since the aid is linked to the best of the household benefits. But Asefave focuses, above all, on the lack of Administration personnel to give quick resolution to the files. “The management part needs to be provided with more resources,” Serradilla stated, “and there is a clear problem in the training of these troops.”

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Deborah Acker

I write epic fantasy; self-published via KDP. Devoted dog mom to my 10 yr old GSD, Shadow! DM not a priority; slow response at best #amwriting #author.

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