Brugnaro, too many conflicts of interest

The opposition is on the attack after the appeal to Tar of the Mayor’s business against reclamation. “The case is in the City Council”

“It is one of the many conflicts of interest of Mayor Brugnaro, about which we now must now begin a more thorough verification. Specifically I recall that the case erupted during the electoral campaign, in April 2015, such that we blocked the procedure of concession”. So said Felice Casson, senator and adversary of Brugnaro in 2015. The Mayor’s company appealed to Tar against the reclamation of Pili, and the controversy has reignited. The opposition has announced battle. “Evident conflicts of interest” declared the PD, the 5 Star and the Lista Casson in one voice. The spark was the presentation of an appeal to the Tar of Veneto on December 22 signed by three Veronese lawyers (Federico Peres, Luciano Butti and Alessandro Kiniger) on behalf of the company “Port of Venezia”, proprietor of the Pili area of Marghera. An appeal which renewed opposition to an injunction of the Ministry for the Environment on the necessity to provide for “the identification and securing of polluted soil”. This would be a preliminary step, wrote the director of the reclamation section of the ministry Laura D’Aprile in a letter “for any operation”.

“But what scandal, the question dates to 2010, when the first appeal was presented”, explained the Mayor’s staff, “the company had already responded but another letter arrived, and so a new appeal was presented”. According to the lawyers for Brugnaro’s company these are inadmissible requests. Because those who should have to pay for analysis and secure of the soil would have to be, according to the law, “those who polluted”. Therefore not the Umana company, which acquired these lands for 5 million Euro in 2006 from the “State Heritage Spa”.

The second point, the money for cleaning up the pollution, argue the lawyers, are already in the Ministry’s possession. 42 billion of old Lire (around 21 million Euro) of the 500 paid by Montedison in the transaction to close the process. The final reason for opposition, according to the Mayor’s staff, is the fact that Brugnaro announced during the electoral campaign: “If I am elected nothing will be done”. And from then the operations and the project have been ‘frozen’.

The fact remains, according to the opposition, that in any case the current Mayor is the owner of these strategic lands, just like many other companies in the Venice area and in Italy. And that the accord for the project for the remediation and environmental restoration of Port Marghera signed some years ago – the object of the appeal – will also be personally run by Mayor Brugnaro. Who just a month ago received the minister of the Environment Luca Galletti at Ca’ Farsetti to announce the financing of 72 million Euros for the bordering of Marghera. Conflict of interest? “Absolutely no”, say the Mayor’s lawyers. But the opposition thinks differently.

Source, La Nuova di Venezia Feb. 21, 2017

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