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Mario Barletta

Mario Domingo Barletta is the mayor of the Argentine city of Santa Fe, the capital of Santa Fe Province, since 11 December 2007. He is an Engineer in Hydrical Resources, and worked as a professor and rector of his alma mater, the National University of the Littoral. As a politician, he has a Radical Civic Union background; he ran for the mayor's office within the Progressive, Civic and Social Front, supporting Hermes Binner's governor ballot.

Academic life and career

Barletta graduated as Engineer in Hydrical Resources from the Santa Fe City-based National University of the Littoral (UNL) in 1978. He took postgraduate courses in the United States (at the universities of Illinois and Columbia). He has a Master of Social Sciences from FLACSO (the Latin American Social Sciences Institute).

Barletta was a professor at the Faculty of Engineering and Hydrical Sciences, and guest professor in other universities. He worked in his field at the Centro Regional Litoral and in the water departments of the provincial governments of Entre Rios, Santa Fe, Chaco, Misiones and Rio Negro.

He directed the Department of General and Applied Hydrology of the UNL, and was the first dean of his faculty. He served as Secretary of Scientific Investigation and Secretary General of UNL. On 22 February 2000 the University Assembly elected him rector, in order to complete the term of Hugo Storero (who had resigned to become a National Deputy). He presided the National Inter-University Council until October 2000, and was part of the Directorship of CONICET (the National Scientific and Technical Research Council), in representation of public and private universities.

He was reelected as rector of the UNL in November 2005, and served from March 2006 until December 2007, when he left to become mayor of Santa Fe.

Mayor of Santa Fe

Barletta ran for the office of Mayor of Santa Fe City on the election of 2 September 2007, representing the Progressive, Civic and Social Front (the same coalition which took the Socialist Hermes Binner to the governor's seat). He came first in the race (32.64% of the vote), with a slight difference of about 3,000 votes, ahead of the Justicialist/Front for Victory candidate Martin Balbarrey , and the independent Peronist candidate Oscar Martinez.

Among his first government measures, Barletta announced the start of a permanent internal audit of the municipality's finances, and declared a "hydrical emergency", to deal swiftly with the vulnerable state of the city facing large amounts of rainfall. Santa Fe City, located in low terrain besides two large rivers, suffered a large flood in 2003, and another serious flood during the autumn 2007 season.

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