MADRID (AP) — The Spanish government has passed a draft bill that aims to make deep cuts to local administration and is expected to save some €7.1 billion ($9.5 billion).
Finance Minister Cristobal Montoro said Friday that under the legislation, which will need to pass through parliament, the number of full-time paid local councilors will be reduced to 12,000 from 68,285 over several years.
Wages for city mayors will be limited to approximately €100,000 while mayors of towns with less than 1,000 inhabitants will no longer be paid.
Cities will have the number of full-time councilors reduced through 2015 according to population. Towns failing to keep their books in order may be merged into the administration of another town.
Spain is struggling to reduce its deficit amid a recession and 26 percent unemployment.