Mayor: Subsidy Cancellation was “a Misunderstanding”
(Acapulco, JG 9 August) The National System of Public Safety, an agency of the federal government gives federal money to qualifying municipalities to assist with law enforcement and public security. Yesterday it was announced that 172 municipalities throughout the country would be cut off from the subsidies for failure to comply with pre-conditions for the aid. Acapulco was one of them. The amount in question is $52 million pesos. The preconditions include the acquisition of bulletproof vests, arms and patrol cars, as well as specialized training of law enforcement officials and background investigations of all personnel to be sure that none are involved with organized crime.
Acapulco Mayor Manuel Añorve Baños made a public statement affirming that Acapulco had complied with all federal requirements and that the official’s decision to cut off aid for Acapulco was the result of “a misunderstanding.” Añorve said, “We are going to clarify this in the next few hours, and everything will be back to normal.” He emphasized that the federal revenues are not at risk of being lost, noting that the problem was “a poor interpretation of the bureaucratic requirements.” Such a statement leaves much room for interpretation, but is likely to mean that someone in the city government missed a deadline or failed to follow instructions.
When asked what effect this subsidy might have on violence, in the face of the fact that more than 35 people were murdered in the last week, Añorve said “These circumstances, which nobody can deny, will not conquer us. We will keep closing ranks and creating more secure situations, together with state and federal authorities. We are not standing with our arms folded; we will guaranty safety for the tourists and create conditions for investment.”
The only municipality in the State of Guerrero that was not cut from the federal subsidy list for failure to comply with the legal requirements was Iguala, which will receive $3 million pesos.