Poll: Most object to illegal homes

Seven out of 10 citizens are against legitimizing illegally built properties, according to a survey made public yesterday by the Technical Chamber of Greece (TEE), the professional body that advises the government on engineering and technical matters. The survey, carried out in July by Public Issue on behalf of TEE on a sample of 2,400 engineers and 615 other citizens, indicated that an overwhelming majority of respondents (83 percent) believe that illegal construction should be punishable by law without exception. On the other hand, a similarly large proportion of respondents (86 percent) said they believe that town-planning regulations in Greece are so complex that most buildings end up having at least one modification that is illegal. Respondents were divided about a recent law regarding «imyipaithrioi,» or semi-open spaces, that allows homeowners to «put in order» parts of their properties that have been illegally altered with 46 percent opposing it and 44 percent backing it. Still 75 percent agreed that the main purpose of the law is to raise revenues for state coffers.