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Thank you Mr Prodi, once more.

I’ll have to call Prodi the ‘stealth’ prime minister. He seems to do some quite good things without telling anyone about them.

Indeed, as a result of a recent change in the law here, I now know longer have to wait in a long queue to renew my pretty unnecessary Permesso di Soggiorno – Permission to Stay certificate. This daft certificate was a formality for those from EU countries, because Italy could not refuse EC members permission to stay.

The application for and renewal of this silly certificate; a complete waste of time, in every sense; used to involve arriving at a police station, Questura, and hanging around in a queue, along with other non-EU people. It was a great way to waste a morning, or longer if you had forgotten some additional piece of information.

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The process was also a great waste of money for the Italian government and taxpayers too. Luckily, Prodi has woken up to this fact (better late than never) and decided that those from EU countries no longer have to waste their time, and Italy’s money getting one of the things.

Now, all you have to do after spending more than three months here, is register yourself with the local commune – council. You will need to show that you have a job or that you have enough cash to keep you in socks. Then you will be able to get a Carta d’identita and this will allow you do just about anything that Italians do.

Nice one Mr P. Have a pint on me.

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