Brothers of Italy, the mayor of L’Aquila Biondi speaks: “City example of good governance of the FdI”

Brothers of Italy, the mayor of L’Aquila Biondi speaks: “City example of good governance of the FdI”

In a phase that sees the electoral campaign focus on major national issues, the territories become carriers of messages, contributions and resources that make up the identity and needs of our country, called to face the current socio-economic challenges in the complex international scenario that we know well. L’Aquila has just returned from a moment of considerable global attention to an event whose doors were materially opened by Pope Francis: that Celestine Pardon that we will know, together with the potential and the best qualities expressed by the city, directly from the words of Pierluigi Biondi, mayor of L’Aquila, recently reconfirmed in the first round as mayor.

Mayor, in L’Aquila recently ended the Celestine Pardon, an event of great religious and secular significance, which this year was attended by the Holy Father. An exciting and “special” occasion for the city and people of L’Aquila…

“This year’s Pardon saw the fulfillment of a hope that the people of L’Aquila had held in their hearts for 728 years. After more than seven centuries, in fact, a Pontiff conferred on Perdonanza that recognition that has been handed down to history as the first jubilee of Christianity. The forgiveness that has just ended has seen our city projected onto the world, thanks to the precious, authoritative and holy presence of Pope Francis, who wanted to grant the people of L’Aquila and all the faithful an extraordinary gift as a profitable indulgence for the entire year. . Pope Francis lowered himself, with great humility, to the breath of the soul of the holy hermit, reinterpreting and exalting his generosity towards the people and the feeling of pacification, source and inspiration of all his actions. In the Collemaggio setting, the Pontiff universally gave an ethical reading of the figure of Celestine V, calling him “the man of yes”, in opposition to Dante’s representation of the “Pope of the great refusal”. The 728th Pardon was also this: recognizing Celestine as the protagonist of history and courageous witness to the Gospel, precursor of social justice and interpreter of pacification among peoples. To the Holy Father, today I present the first Prize of Forgiveness, a recognition dedicated to the defense of the weakest and the affirmation of peace, inspired by the moral legacy of Celestine V and established this year as part of the 728th edition of the Celestine Forgiveness ».

The 728th Forgiveness represented the culmination of a path of growth: with what eyes and spirit do you look at the results achieved, as well as the next ones?

“Forgiveness has always happened: neither the earthquake nor the pandemic could stop it because it is a fundamental part of the city’s identity. Therefore, as an autarchy, we have supported and worked to make it grow and emerge from the local space, giving it a new and original connotation, transforming it into a national event both in the artistic and religious aspects, in synergy with the curia. Many results have been achieved and made stronger and more significant by the presence of Pope Francis. Among them, the Unesco recognition of the Intangible Heritage of Humanity in 2019 and the prestigious European Award (European Heritage Awards of the European Commission) to the Basilica of Santa Maria di Collemaggio for the consolidation and reconstruction project in 2020. from the Jubilee Year, it will be ready to welcome the faithful, with respect and gratitude for an act of significant spiritual significance, but which will also have considerable economic repercussions throughout the entire territory of the seismic crater ».

Your city is experiencing a happy moment from a socioeconomic point of view, driven by growing tourism.

«The adopted strategy proved to be innovative and successful, rewarded by the numbers of affluence that have no comparison with the past, thanks to the new generations of tourists who love the rediscovery of the territory. In this sense, we carried out an intense and widespread promotional action, accompanied by the organization of an adequate reception system, valuing all the rediscovered beauty of the city in full physical and community renaissance, as the data on the increasing number of tourists amply demonstrates. . and those about new productive activities. And then there is the culture that has developed wonderfully in its many artistic possibilities, thanks to the attention and care that we have reserved for it. In addition, we work to make L’Aquila the city for all, through accessibility to the system for welcoming tourists with companions and specific projects on disability».

After the earthquake and the social restrictions of the pandemic, culture has returned to being a resource and, so to speak, an economic lever also in L’Aquila…

«Summer is culture thanks to the memorable editions of Cantieri dell’Immaginario, Pinewood Festival, Celestinian Perdonanza, Jazz Festival. The autumn, winter and spring months are characterized by quality billboards and popular sporting events. As well as events for the younger generation only, such as the “Festival de Histórias”. Some facts: the Cantieri dell’Immaginario were appreciated by ten thousand spectators; the Twenty Thousand Jazz Festival; the Holy Door saw a hundred thousand faithful pass through it; hotels sold out this summer ».

What is the work dedicated to maximizing NRP resources and focusing on their utilization?

“The Municipality of L’Aquila approved, within the deadline, all the projects submitted to use the resources of the Complementary Fund to the Pnrr dedicated to the areas affected by the 2009 earthquake and Central Italy: almost 150 million to finance more than fifty proposals for interventions of urban regeneration, training, reinforcement of sports facilities and enhancement of cultural heritage. A titanic effort, made by the institution through the advance of resources from its budget and the use of its managers, employees and municipal technicians. Shortly before the arrival of the Holy Father , we have concluded the works on what is certainly one of the first construction sites in Italy financed with the Recovery and Resilience Plan: a flight of stairs in front of the Holy Door of the Basilica of Collemaggio with its consequent improvement. September and must be delivered by December 31, even if, according to an estimate made by us, it was if necessary an additional specialized employee for every million euros to be spent. A response from central institutions is therefore urgently needed so that municipalities, especially the smallest ones, can professionally equip themselves to be able to take advantage of these important opportunities for relaunching and development».

Compared to the current election campaign, how should Giorgia Meloni’s candidacy for L’Aquila be read?

«Gorgia Meloni has a special relationship with Abruzzo. In addition to being a land that he deeply loves, it is a region in which the Brothers of Italy have walked a path of change, becoming an example of good government. Here, in 2017, the party voiced the first mayor of the regional capital in Italy, confirmed in the previous administrative seats, and the first president of the Region, in 2019. Meloni stressed, on several occasions, that all mayors and representatives of the elected places in Abruzzo with FdI, they were the pioneers of a political transformation that today affects the entire nation, forming part of a reliable, competent and prepared ruling class. On that basis, you accepted the proposal to run in the constituency of L’Aquila-Teramo for the Chamber. The objective is to establish a direct chain between the national government, led by the Brothers of Italy and the centre-right coalition, the Region and the Municipalities, so as to be able to include issues and reforms capable of responding to the political agenda. community: reinforcement and acceleration of infrastructure, connections between the Adriatic and Tyrrhenian coasts, completion of the reconstruction processes from the 2009 and 2016-2017 earthquakes, harmonious development of inland and coastal areas ».

Source: IL Tempo