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Golob Gave Up EU Funding For Flood Protection – At The Time Of Floods

In the days when floods devastated Slovenian towns and cities, especially Cerkno, the government renounced part of the EU funding for flood protection. Golob decided that he would rather spend the money from the state budget on this, using the excuse that he needs more time to bring projects in line with environmental standards. This decision is similar to the one about the purchase of the inferior firefighting aircrafts for 23 million euros, while Croatia received them for free from the European Union. In April, we reported that Slovenia was the second most unsuccessful EU member state in absorbing EU funds.

While Slovenians are suffering from a wide range of troubles, from long waiting times in healthcare to astronomical food and energy prices, threats to drinking water, higher taxes, and natural disasters, the government of Robert Golob has decided to refuse foreign aid for part of its flood protection projects. It would rather finance them from the national budget! At the same time, it has not made it clear by when it will actually provide the investment. In their explanation, representatives of the government stated that they needed more time to bring the projects into line with environmental standards. For Golob, the so-called environmental standards are more important than the safety, lives and private property of his own constituents!

The decision comes at a time when storms have devastated parts of Slovenia, especially Cerkno, where rising waters destroyed homes, cars and roads and even washed away rubbish containers. In addition to Cerkno, Thursday’s storm also hit other Slovenian municipalities hard, with damage that has been caused being worse than after the spring storm. It came in two waves, and the damage varies considerably from one area to another. In Brežice, for example, agricultural crops were destroyed, while in Krško, hundreds of buildings and an unknown number of cars were destroyed. The situation was similar in the Prekmurje region. In the Koroška and Savinjska regions, the wind was also devastating.

It should also be noted that the current ruling coalition, in cooperation with the left-wing NGO the 8th of March Institute – Inštitut 8. marec  (which is led by Nika Kovač), had already blocked the Water Act, which would have transferred ownership of river banks from the state to municipalities and provided them with the funds to clean up the river banks. The refusal of European Union funds is a similar story to Marjan Šarec‘s purchase of firefighting planes for 23 million euros, instead of Slovenia receiving them for free from the EU, like Croatia. We reported months ago that Slovenia is a complete failure in the absorption of EU funds, as the country was ranked second to last among the 22 Member States. By April, Slovenia had received only a (shameful) 9.31 percent of the funds allocated to it under the Recovery and Resilience Plan. This is the price we are paying for the election of “manager” Golob.

Domen Mezeg

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