Rome city budget approved

Mayor Raggi celebrates as revised Rome budget wins approval.

Rome mayor Virginia Raggi hailed the "historic" approval of the capital's 2017-2019 budget on 30 January, a month after an earlier budget was rejected by the city’s independent auditing body, the Organo di Revisione Economico-Finanziaria (OREF).

Raggi and her anti-establishment Movimento 5 Stelle celebrated the approval of the revised budget, for which city parliament voted 29 in favour and 15 against, one week after OREF expressed its “favourable opinion” of the amended figures.

Describing it as an "historic achievement for the city in recent years", Raggi said that Rome had approved its three-year budget, worth €5.3 billion, ahead of other major Italian cities such as Milan.

The Rome budget contains €577 million earmarked for investment, of which €430 million will be spent on upgrading the capital's public transport network, including funding Metro C works and buying new buses.

Raggi blamed her immediate predecessors for saddling the city with a debt of €23 billion but pledged that her administration would “restore legality” and cut waste, with investments planned for culture, society, innovation, transport and the environment.

The publicity surrounding the budget's approval will be welcomed by the embattled mayor who is currently under investigation on suspicion of abuse of office and for making false public statements.