The office of the newly re-elected Mayor Stratos Charchalakis extends its sincere gratitude to the voting citizens of Kythera for their participation in the October 8 municipal elections. All parties worked hard to address the current issues we face as a community and as every vote is an expression of personal judgement and concern, we honour the faith and responsibility placed on the continuing leadership of this office.
It is with that same democratic principle in mind that we recognize how vital opposition is to policy formulation, therefore it is our duty to encourage the participation of Kytherian citizens across the entire local political spectrum. We also thank those who did not honour us with their vote. We respect your choice, hear your message, and embrace the challenges ahead in refining our social and political agenda towards an inclusive trajectory. During the next five year term we fully intend to uphold the democratic consciousness that distinguishes our region.
Stratos Charchalakis was first elected Mayor of Kythera and Antikythera in 2014, again in 2019 and after his recent electoral victory for Office will be active for the next five years ending in 2028.
During his tenure as Mayor developments in infrastructure include:
- the new waste management site on Kythera and Antikythera (XYTY);
- the initiation of further waste management modernization and sewerage network renewal for the southern part of the island;
- the initiation of the Fire Protection System Project;
- the purchase of municipal vehicles for the fire brigade, technical services and garbage collection;
- the architectural and structural maintenance and restoration of the historic British bridges on Kythera;
- the completion and confirmation of the Land and Property Register and Forestry Validation;
- the creation of a larger and contemporary Citizen’s Assistance Bureau (KEP);
- the authorization and construction of an abattoir project in Fratsia to begin in 2024;
- the Marine Project, the installation of ISPS facilities in accordance with EU directives to provide safety and maritime security. This project is of major importance for the port of Kapsali and the island as it will allow for the mooring of international vessels. Addressing the potential increase to the volume of marine traffic is of major concern to this Office;
- increasing water resources, the extension of the desalinization projects to include Paliopoli, Avlemonas, Kapsali and Antikythera will commence as scheduled as part of the Tritsis Programme;
- new sports and recreational facilities approved for Potamos and Friligianika. These facilities are in addition to completed sports facilities in Viaradika and Manitochori;
- seven new children’s playgrounds have been constructed with joint funding from the Filodemos programme and the Municipality of Kythera;
- the creation of The Kythera Migration Museum in collaboration with the FMK. This ambitious project will highlight an important aspect of Kytherian history and provide space for educational and cultural events and seminars. When completed it will be one of just a handful of museums globally dedicated to the ever more relevant issue of migration.
The foundations and the priorities of the Kainourgia Mera Party are based on development programmes and resources from both Greece and the European Union. Funding programmes include CLLD/Leader and the Antonis Tritsis Foudation.
The island has recently made great leaps in popularity and development which comes with a huge responsibility for the welfare of the natural environment and citizens alike. With accountability and transparency, the Mayor and his qualified and experienced elected Councillors together with colleagues from a range of backgrounds aim for a heightened awareness of the security and sustainability of the island, its land, water and skies.
While we can plan to increase available resources we must also inspire conservation practices and a greater sensitivity to our existing resources. These ideas and their development into workable recommendations for policy formulation will require steadfast and considerable effort from the Office of the Mayor and the citizens of our island.
We fully comprehend the importance of preserving and supporting all aspects of our cultural heritage, from agricultural to artistic and educational endeavours. This work includes regular consultations with the Kytherian Foundation for Culture and Development (KIPA).
Our priorities include:
- protection of the natural environment ensuring that Kythera moves into a sustainable, holistic trajectory;
- protection of our wildlife migratory bird zones in regular consultation with the AntiKythera Bird Sanctuary and WWF Greece;
- we will examine options available for supporting individual domestic-sized renewables and what grant initiatives are available to locals. Our objective is to set a standard of green energy on an individual domestic level in collaboration with the Energy Community of Kythera. Our long-term objective is for Kythera to become self-sufficient;
- Careful consideration and management of the inevitable expansion of tourism on our islands, with sustainable ecotourism a priority.
- Council campaigning on waste education in conjunction with local primary schools and the High School to educate the local community;
- Continued support for local artisans and traditional heritage based activities.
In closing, the Mayoral Office looks forward to the input and future participation of Kytherians and AntiKytherians through regular consultations with constituents as well as with the Kytherian diaspora and philo-Kytherians abroad. Beginning in 2024 meetings will be held throughout the island to give the community opportunities to voice issues and concerns. The resulting comments and feedback will play a valuable part in decisions to be made.
This office wishes our island, its citizens and lovers of our island a blessed and fortunate future.