► Study ranks 25 best and 41 worst municipalities on social-services spending ►
A newly released study on the provision of social services by local governments across Spain shows that municipalities in the southernmost region of Andalucía are among the most generous in per-capita spending on social services, followed by local governments in Catalonia and the Basque Country.
Produced by the national Association of Directors and Managers of Social Services (Asociación de Directoras y Gerentes de Servicios Sociales), the study rated 384 municipalities of more than 20,000 inhabitants on the level of local spending for affordable housing, food and other assistance designed to alleviate poverty and social exclusion among local citizens.
Based on the latest available 2016 figures provided by the central government’s Ministry of Finance and Public Administration, the study concluded that 25 local governments nationwide had met or exceeded a level of “Social Excellence”, dedicating at least 10% of their total budgets to spending on social services. Nine municipal governments in Andalucía topped the list for excellence, followed by six in Catalonia, five in the Basque Country, two in Aragon, two from Castilla-La Mancha and one each from Castilla-León and the Balearic Islands.
At the other end of the spectrum, 41 municipalities across the country were classified as providing the poorest levels of social services, spending less than 39.69 euros per year per inhabitant on social services, which is 60 percent below the national average for municipal spending for providing essential social services. Municipal governments in the regional communities of Madrid, Valencia, Murcia and Extremadura accounted for more than 75 percent of the local governments found by the study to provide the poorest levels of social spending nationwide.