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Disappointment for LRAU protestors

Wed 29th Sep 2010

The Valencia region's various 'LRAU' action groups have been dealt a major blow after lawyers in Brussels ruled that the EU's public contract laws are do not apply in the region.

The protest groups, had challenged the so-called LRAU laws - commonly known as "land grab" laws in the region of Valencia, claiming that they violated European Union law. Local Ayuntamientos have used the laws to charge homeowners fees and, in some cases, confiscate land to help build new developments.

Charles Svoboda, vice-president of campaign group Abusos Urbanísticos No (AUN), made a statement following the ruling by the commission, saying how it was "full of errors, omissions and faulty conclusions."

He continued: "We're surprised and disappointed with the narrow approach taken by the AG and the conclusions he has reached but it's not the end of the story.

"There is one more kick at the can, in the sense we understand that the Commission now will respond to the AG's report and recommendations."

Meanwhile, many of the region's politicians, who have always denied the property abuses, have welcomed the findings.

Juan Cotino, third regional vice president, responsible for town planning said: "It is time for those who collaborated in the campaigns of defamation against Valencia town planning to pay the price - they should repair the damage they have done and say sorry".

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