Towards the vote in Rometta, Messina: “Ready to listen to the voice of the citizens”


By John

She aims to be, at the age of 42, the first mayor in the history of Rometta. Behind her, a separate administrative career as municipal secretary, Melania Messina she has undoubted experience accumulated from 2014 to 2018, as councilor for public education and tourism, sport and entertainment, and then as deputy mayor between 2019 and 2021, in both periods on the appointment of the former mayor Nicola Merlino, whose “heir” Nino Cirino is now competing for the leadership of the Municipality.
What do you remember of those years of public administration and where did your decision to run for mayor come from, three years after your post in that council was stopped?
That journey was, in the early days, a wonderful experience. A moment of growth, thanks also to the contribution of the whole group, with the implementation of projects such as the school bus and school transport. I don't consider the second experience positive because the relationship of mutual trust has disappeared. As for my candidacy, it was born from my love for Rometta and my passion for politics and public law which also precedes my first job as municipal secretary.
In your opinion, what needs to change in Rometta's administration?
It must be more open, first and foremost, to citizens. In recent years there has been little dialogue both at local level, with other municipalities, and with higher level bodies. A different line of action is needed, there are unresolved problems that block development such as the lack of Rometta-Saponara connection, and the need to rationalize the road network at the entrance to the motorway, where the essential interlocutors are the Cas and the Ministry.
You seem to question paid parking. Can you explain your position?
I do not deny this possibility but I also say that an administrator, if he receives a univocal voice from the citizens, must listen to it. My position is this: the blue lines are fine where it concerns land rented by the Municipality and there they are indeed necessary given that these are services on individual demand, but they are not fine, in the summer, on municipal roads. Furthermore, they do not even eliminate the problem of chaos in some areas, if anything they move it elsewhere
In any case, however, the problem is complex and must be addressed as best as possible.
And in fact among my objectives is to strengthen the municipal police force, just 5 officers and a detached unit, and of those 5 only two full time. This can be done with seasonal or fixed-term hires. The same goes for the technical office, where two retired technicians need to be replaced, not to mention maintenance which can rely on 2 non-full-time workers. In short, the personnel policy must be reviewed, the offices must be reorganized
In recent years there has been no shortage of public works and funding. What do you think?
I recognize that some things have been done but, on the Pnrr, for example, more could have been done. From small measures for redevelopment, to sports equipment, to other financing. It must be taken into account that ours, between Rometta center and Marea, is a vast territory full of needs that are different from each other
Rometta center has benefited from interventions for tourism such as, for example, that for the Caves.
What is your goal for the historic center?
Here too a broader discussion needs to be made. Doing tourism means first of all encouraging the residents of the historic center to stay and live there, stemming depopulation. Outside of the bar, unfortunately, there are no commercial activities in that perimeter, and the closest ones are in San Cono and Sottocastello. To do tourism we therefore need initiatives such as “houses for 1 euro” or “widespread hotel”, the policy of religious and naturalistic tourism with attention to “paths” and targeted territorial and commercial promotions
If you are elected mayor, what will be your priority method?
Give a strong signal to all the associations that operate in the area, including those in the third sector, with which it is possible to plan and co-plan services.
And of merit?
«In addition to the remodeling of parking lots, immediate measures to address the water shortage in the hilly area. Without prejudice to the skills of the ATI, maximum effort is needed in terms of maintenance of supply sources”
Among the candidates for the Council there are 5 women and 3 men. Conversely, among the 3 designated councilors there are no women. How attracted are you by the chance to be Rometta's first mayor?
I've thought about it, sure, but that's not the biggest motivation. I believe that women, like men, should be rewarded exclusively based on their abilities and skills. I can certainly say that we bring a different point of view to politics, not better, but equally important
How do you see the tourist Rometta of the future?
Tourist but which takes into account the good and happiness of resident citizens. I return to the example of the historic center: it would be useful, already for the students, for the Municipality to encourage the Region to strengthen the transport service”.
The work you dreamed of?
The waterfront, first of all the redevelopment of Piazza Peppino Impastato, and then an important project to create a pedestrian and cycle path, where possible, from Via Mezzasalma towards Fondaconuovo”.