The Local Councils' Association is taking part in the 2012 Malta Trade Fair which is the largest annual trade show in Malta, with attendance exceeding 80,000 persons over the period of the Fair. This year's event is being held between the 27 June and 8 July 2012 and was officially opened by the Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi on the 27 June 2012.
The Local Councils' Association has a stand of 64 square meters and is promoting three EU partly funded projects:
This is the first time that the LCA has participated in such a big event and the process was made through a public procurement tender and also the use of external expertise already engaged with the LCA.
The citizens that visit the stand can avail themselves with various literature, merchandising, DVD's, leaflets and information relating to the environment, covenant of mayors, renewable energy, water management, culture, and also use the eGOV4U public access terminal.
As part of this participation, the LCA is also organising a half-day seminar on energy and climate change. The seminar is being organised on the 7th July 2012 between 0830 and 1300hrs at the Millenium Building of the MFA, Ta' Qali. Persons wishing to attend can contact the LCA by email or phone.
On the negative side, however, the Local Councils' Association has been officially informed that the Co-Financing Fund is dead as there are no funds allocated by the Central Government. The co-financing fund was set by the Central Government on the proposal of the LCA in order to assist Local Councils' in the participation in EU funded projects.
The LCA has nine pending applications for new projects that have been in process since the first quarter of 2012. The Government used to boast that through the Co-Financing Fund, Local Councils were empowered to take part in EU funded proejcts as part of their co-financing requirements were paid out of this central fund.
The LCA will be raising the issue with the Prime Miniser, who has now taken over the responsibility of Local Government following the resignation of Minister Dr. Carmelo Mifsud Bonnici.
In the meantime, LCA took part in yet another meeting with the UHM and the Collective Bargaining Unit to further discuss the new collective agrement for clerical staff of all Local Councils. The meeting once again went through all the points proposed by the UHM and another meeting is scheduled for the 16 July, 2012. The LCA has stressed the point that the discussions should come to an end as alot of time has been wasted in revieweing the same proposals all over again and again.
The LCA stated that it is in the interest of the employees to have a new collective agreement and not to further stall the discussions.
Some of the proposals made by the UHM cannot be met under the current economic situation due to the pressure put on the Government to cut down the financial deficit.