Liquor License Holders in Nicoya Canton continue to complain to members of the Municipal Council due to failure to abide by their requests to reduce the quarterly prices for the sale of alcoholic beverages.
The council members announced on June 23 the new amounts to be paid quarterly by the canton’s liquor license holders. However, during the council session on Monday, July 14, patent holders returned to the council in order to report that the license department (patentes) of the municipality continues to charge them higher amounts.
Domingo Arias, representative of the patent holders, told the council members, “We come to ask that you explain to us what is happening in the license department, because you approved a definitive agreement and here no one does anything. They are playing around with us, and you (council members) are “like butter” for this man, Cristian [Soto] (in charge of licenses), because he doesn’t listen to you.”
Because of these statements, the council members asked for respect from Arias and they explained to him that this issue should be resolved by the integrated joint commission of council members, municipal officials and license holders.
Juan Luis Aguirre, president of the municipal council, reminded license holders that as members of the council, they cannot “run over” the actions of a previously established municipal commission and therefore the commission will be in charge of meeting and solving the matter.
For her part, the vice mayor, Adriana Rodriguez, reported that the license department officials are still updating the database and perhaps for this reason the rates of some license holders remain the same.
Resident Complains About Pollution of Lagarto River and Deforestation
Following this, Carlos Esquivel, president of the Samara ASADA, voiced his concern to the council members about the alleged pollution of Lagarto River due to drainage from Pali supermarket that flows directly into the tributary.
“Since Pali was built, sewage, pieces of meat skins and waste began to fall into Lagarto River and out to the sea. We’ve filed a complaint with the Ministry of Health, but the pollution continues,” explained Esquivel, who also showed the council members photos on the drainage pipe.
To this individual, Juan Edwin Yockchen, council member from the Social Christian Unity Party (PUSC – Partido Unidad Social Cristiana), thanked Esquivel for his courage to denounce and report the situation. However, he reminded him that as a council, the council members do not have the authority to make an agreement to sanction the company directly, but they will ask the environmental department of the municipality to investigate the matter.
In addition, Esquivel asked council members to prohibit building permits above the Mala Noche Creek water table and refill areas because apparently a resident of the area would have obtained permits from the municipal engineering department to build in the area.
Also, Esquivel reported to the council on traffic in Samara of trucks loaded with wood from protected species like espavel (wild cashew), Guanacaste and cenizaro (rain tree). “I have reported this to MINAE and nothing has ever been done. They are taking [the wood] from Ostional, mostly on the weekends when MINAE is not working, and what worries me most is that they all bear the stamp of MINAE,” Esquivel said.
Canton’s Roadways Board Dismisses Council Member for Not Attending Sessions
Finally, a document was read from the Canton’s Roadways Board (Junta Vial Cantonal), which detailed the dismissal of Carlos Medina, council member from the Citizen Action Party (PAC – Partido Accion Ciudadana) who served as representative of the council on the board, due to his consecutive and unjustified absence from the committee’s meetings.
In this situation, Medina stated that he agreed with the decision of his dismissal due to having very serious personal differences with Rafael Angel Galagarza, secretary of the Canton’s Roadways Board.
“I cannot work with Mr. Galagarza because we have very serious personal differences and it was not a good idea for me to attend these sessions,” Medina said.
In the next council meeting, the council members will elect a representative of the council to the board.