Following the announcement by the Italian Cabinet of additional austerity measures to include plans to combine all 1,963 towns in Italy with populations of fewer than 1,000, some mayors protested by turning in their honorary keys to the city while others began developing marketing plans inviting immigrants to their towns in order to raise their town’s population above the 1,000 minimum and remain independent.
Luca Sellari, mayor of Filettino, had different ideas: he decided to create an independent monarchy with himself as prince, and a new currency, the fiorito (which means small flower) with an exchange rate of two fioritos to the Euro (about 72 cents each).
The austerity plan would eliminate the jobs of 54,000 elected officials and save some money. Sellari wants to remain independent, however, and is moving to take Filettino (population 598) private.
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Photo: A village in the Italian region of Lazio.