-Hola, Todos –
Feliz Día de Acción de Gracias. There will be no Periodico tomorrow, but there will be one Friday. Enjoy your celebration.
40 millones más de presupuesto (40 million more in budget) – The 2022 budget for the Municipio de Cuenca is $277,092,492, an increase of about $40 million over the 2021 budget of $236,629,841. The budget needs to be approved by the Concejo Cantonal de Cuenca in 2 de debates by 10/12. According to Fabián Moscoso, head of the Dirección Financiera (Finance Department), the budget was presented to the council el 28/10. He said the additional $40 million is intended for investments, basically in public works such as bridges, traffic interchanges, markets and road works. Also included are delayed projects. Most of the budget increase is coming from credit from organizations such as the Corporación Andina Fomento (CAF), Banco de Desarrollo (BDE), and others.
Presentan resulatados de estudio sobre el reclaje (Results of study on recycling presented) – Important conclusions were reached through the “Análysis del Ciclo de Vida Social (ACVS) aplicado al Reciclaje de Cuenca” (Social Life Cycle Analysis applied to Recycling in Cuenca) research which was developed by the Departamento Interdisciplinario de Espacio y Población ( Interdisciplinary Department of Space and Population) at the U. of Cuenca and the Proyecto Economía Circular e Inclusiva (ECI – Circular and Inclusive Economy Project) with the support of the Empresa Municipal de Aseo de Cuenca (EMAC). Dolores Sucozhañay, who presented the results of the study, said it was done to understand and improve the situation of the recyclers and to generate strategies and support the development of public policies in their favor. The study evaluated the social impact of the service via 4 critical points – Collection, Transport, Pre-processing, and Commercialization (fair prices). These are the activities of the recyclers who often pass desapercibidas (unnoticed) by the public and institutions even though their work is vital for the economy and environment.
Bertha Charco, coordinator of the Red Nacional de Recicladores del Ecuador, expressed thanks for being included in this research. She said that they have been working since 1998 and never had the opportunity to tell the authorities their problems. She also said that most of the recyclers are women including many seniors. The rector of the U. of Cuenca, María Augusta Hermida, was surprised that 80% of the recyclers were women of advanced age, and that this and other data opened her eyes to the policies that should be implemented. The research showed that there are 600 recyclers in Cuenca of whom only 270 are associated with and have EMAC cards. The average age is 52 and 80% are women. The monthly income is about $125.70, and only 1% are affiliated with social security in spite of the ergonomic risks in their work. Each worker suffers an average of 3.5 injuries each year. Added to this is child labor, lack of bathroom facilities when they complete their collections, and the difficulty of transporting what they collect. 51% have experienced some kind of discrimination at a frequency of 6 incidents per year, and many times they are not paid fair prices. <So when you see these recyclers going through your garbage, don’t yell at them and chase them away – they’re just doing their jobs. Instead you should be thankful that you’re not in their shoes.>
Otra cifras (Other figures) – Other data from the research showed that Cuenca generates 521 tons of garbage a day, or .54 kilos per person. 48% of households classify their waste. 5.3% of the waste is recuperated thanks to the recyclers. In 2019, recyclers recovered 2,408 tons of recyclable material, putting it into production chains instead of going into landfill. Their efforts avoided the emission of 14,940 tons of CO2-Eq. which is comparable to 9,000 transatlantic flights, and generated a public savings of $225,000,000. <And for all that they make a whole $125.70 per month. Now that’s something to be grateful for tomorrow – that we can enjoy a $20.00 Thanksgiving dinner that would take 4 days of hard work by a recycler to buy.>
Luz verde para Pase por la Bolívar y Años Viejos (Green light for the Pase del Niño on Bolivar and the Años Viejos) – Cuenca will go back to its traditional end of the year events with the Pase del Niño Viajero, the Años Viejos contest, and the comparsas parade. The Pase del Niño will be on Bolívar as it has traditionally been and not on Huayna Cápac as was considered earlier. The parade will be held with all biosecurity measures, and the decision to hold it in El Centro was based on the reduction of Covid cases in the canton. According to Mayor Palacios, there will be last meeting this week to deal with minor details such as the number of floats that can participate, and the Mayor is 99.999% certain that the Pase will be along Bolívar.
The Amistad Club is calling for entries to the Años Viejos contest on el 31/12 from the barrios. The club will be be presenting its contingency plans in a few days for the Años Viejos and the comparsas parade. The president, César Vanegas, said after the Covid free Mundialito de los Pobres event, also organized by the Amistad Club, it is ready for the two end-of-year events. He said, “No tenemos inconvenientes in la organización. Sabemos organizar los eventos.” (We have no difficulties in the organization. We know how to organize events.), <And they certainly do – I don’t know how many years they’ve been putting this together.> To enter the Años Viejos contest, go to the Amistad Club headquarters at calle Gonzalo Díaz y Antón de Sevilla starting el 1/12 between 17:00 and 19:00.
Nada concreto para iniciar restauración en el Benigno Malo (Nothing concrete for start of restoration at Benigno Malo) – The Asociación de Ex Alumnos (Alumni Association) of the Benigno Malo high school presented their studies for the restoration of the school. They estimated a cost of $9 million to complete both interior and exterior work which will need to be done in phases. The MInisterio de Educación, the Municipio de Cuenca, and the Concejo Cantonal participated in the meeting, but none had any solid dates or funds for the work. So far the Ministerio de Educación has funds for the first phase, but the cost of the work is unknown. The Mayor said that the city is not planning to contribute anything, at least in the first phase, since the Government owes the municipality money. One of the proposals of the Alumni Association is to knock on doors of private and public institutions to join in the restoration project.
“Peligroso” aumento de contagios en Perú (“Dangerous” increase of contagions in Peru) – The Peruvian health minister, Hernando Cevallos, admitted ayer that the country is showing a dangerous increase in Covid cases, but could not confirm if this was a 3d wave of the illness. He said that people should be careful especially with the upcoming fiestas. He did not want to repeat the problems Peru has already faced. He said that new health measures would go into effect in the middle of diciembre. These include people having both doses of vaccines in order to enter enclosed public spaces. He said these were not restrictive measures, but the least people could do in terms of social responsibility to protect everyone.
And that’s all for today so Hasta el viernes –