MUNICIPAL ELECTIONS

MUNICIPAL ELECTIONS

The Spanish municipal elections are held every 4 years and in Spain the next ones will be on Sunday 26 May 2019. 

There are over 1,000 seats in the 38 Provincial Deputations, over 8,000 Municipalities (boroughs) and over 67,000 Councillors to be elected.

In the Spanish municipal elections immigrants belonging to the EU and resident in Spain are able to vote.  You must be at least 18 years old and registered on the Electoral Census.  

Immigrants from other countries – Bolivia, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Perú, Paraguay, Trinidad and Tobago, Norway, Iceland, Cape Verde, New Zealand and the Republic of Korea are also able to vote provided:

  • They are of age
  • They are legal residents in Spain during at least 5 years at the time of registering on the Electoral Census, except in the case of Norway which require 3 years and people from New Zealand are entitled to vote without an attached minimum time restriction
  • They can vote solely in the borough where they live and where they are on the Padrón.

For anybody to vote in the local elections it is essential that you are on the Padrón in the borough where you live and registered on the Electoral Census.  This has to be done by December 2018.  It is not sufficient to just be on the Padrón, you must also apply at your local town hall to be on the electoral register.

Some weeks before the elections the Electoral Office will send a voting card by post to all citizens who are registered. This card will show where you have to go to vote, the section and the electoral table. You will need to take your NIE and Passport (not copies).  Postal votes are also possible but more on that nearer the time.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO VOTE IN THE LOCAL ELECTIONS?

In the first place, your vote counts, the same as everybody else’s and it is unique to you – it is YOUR way of expressing your opinion.  You are voting on who will represent your borough, the political party, elected Mayor and his team of Councillors.  

From central government each borough is allocated (as per the number who are on the Padrón) an amount of money to spend on the locality – emergency services (police, ambulance, fire), medical centres, schools, roads and paths, parks and gardens, public transport, the elderly, animal welfare, beaches, general improvements, staffing of public services, ferias etc so your vote will determine how pleasant, well kept and convenient your surroundings will be.  We all want to live in beautifully maintained surroundings so your vote is important.

The date in May 2019 is 2 months after we cease to officially be EU citizens so it is very likely that we will not be able to vote.  For those of us who have been here longer than 15 years, we cannot vote in the UK elections, as a non-EU citizen we will not be able to vote in the EU elections nor in the local Spanish elections.  We shall be totally disenfranchised!  

Our British Ambassador in Spain is helping us with this and has already forwarded copies of our campaign to number 10, Cabinet Office, DexEU and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and he has raised it with the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.  We need to continue to raise awareness with the Spanish councils and then, with their support, take it to the top!

Although we have a lot of support for this so far, we need you to show your support for our campaign to allow us to vote in the Spanish local elections, time is of the essence so go to our website www.brexpats.es download the letter, add your name and NIE and forward to your local town hall – we are asking the UK and Spain to constitutionally recognise our right to vote.  

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