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The upmarket Torre Bermeja development east of Estepona. Josele
Luxury apartments in Estepona back in spotlight over community president's latest salary increase
Property

Luxury apartments in Estepona back in spotlight over community president's latest salary increase

Stephen Hills, with the support of absent owners who have given him their vote, now earns more than 100,000 euros at the helm of the Torre Bermeja residential development

David Lerma

Estepona

Friday, 14 June 2024, 14:52

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The controversial president of the Torre Bermeja residential community to the east of Estepona has seen his salary rise to more than 103,000 euros. Stephen Hills won support with the help of votes from absent expat owners. This means the president of this residents' association earns more than the Spanish Prime Minister.

According to lawyer David Valadez, whose client is the sole complainant against Hills who last year was paid 86,724 euros by the owners, Hills requested a meeting for the approval of this year's budgets.

"This took place last Friday and it shows his salary as president and an exemption of the payment of community fees, even though he is an owner. So Hills would have received 93,706 euros this year plus an exemption of 9,504 for community fees," To avoid a legal problem with this, Valadez explained, "he has removed this item and the 9,504 euros have been added to his salary. Now he has been paid more than 103,000."

In view of the legal cases open, "it was put to a vote at the meeting that the residential community should take out an insurance policy so that, in the event of an unfavourable ruling, the money would be recovered". Valadez said that during the meeting, "I was dumbfounded. When we have the minutes, we are going to expand the lawsuit".

The management of this community of owners is also of concern to María Gómez, a member of the association Apercove, which defends the rights of property owners. "Some of the owners are members of our association. They came to us asking for help because they are powerless. We suspect that many of those attending the meeting were friends of the president. Gómez's version coincides with that of Valádez. Both acknowledge that Hills was applauded after his approval and that he was asked "when it had been agreed that he would have a salary".

"I'm in the wrong profession," joked Gómez, who works in real estate

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