Cebu News

“People’s budget” for 2016 waiting for council nod

Jean Marvette A. Demecillo/JMO - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu City Hall’s executive department has submitted to the City Council what it calls the “people’s budget” for the 2016 Annual Budget amounting to P8.9 billion.

The amount is lesser by P4.5 billion than this year’s approved budget of P13.4 billion, which was the biggest compared to those in the previous years.

In 2012, the City Council approved a P5.3-billion annual budget, which was roughly half of the proposed budget of P11.8 billion. In 2013, the Council approved P5.19 billion and P5.9 billion for 2014.

 “Aware of the forthcoming elections next year and the term limits of elected officials, we consciously proposed a leaner budget but still in accord with our administration’s established budget parameters embraced in the acronym BARE, which stands for Balance, Adequate, Responsive and Effective budget,” said Mayor Michael Rama.

The P8.9 billion proposed budget would be sourced from the projected tax revenue (P2.9 billion), non-tax revenue (P770 million), auction sale of real properties (P150 million), general income accounts (P3.6 billion), Internal Revenue Allotment (P1.5 billion), share from Ecozone (P165 million), total external sources (P1.5 million), and total general income accounts (P2.7 billion).

Another source of fund identified by the executive department is the sale from the South Road Properties wherein the city is expected to receive P2.7 billion next year which is the first installment from SM Prime Holdings in consortium of Ayala Land-Cebu Holdings Inc. and Filinvest Land Inc. out of the 45.2 hectare lot. The remaining 50 percent of the total sale will be settled in two to three years on installment basis.

Of the P8.9 billion, P715 million would be used to subsidize the special accounts.

The proposed budget’s expenditures include P1.7 billion for personal services, P4.7 billion for Maintenance and other Operating Expenses, and P2.4 billion for Capital Outlay.

Rama said the proposed budget is in keeping with the local development requirements to address the main areas of critical development concerns namely Infrastructure (P1.38 billion), Social (P2.27 billion), Economic (P100.5 million), Environmental (P697.5 million), and Development Administration (P4.5 billion) or I-SEED.

The other projects included in the proposed budget are asphalting of roads (P310 million), concreting of roads (P129 million), health (P564 million), lighting of streets (P27 million), peace and order P276 million), garbage (P541 million), traffic (P236 million), drainage (P190 million), connectivity (P20 million), campaign against drugs (P12 million), housing (P100 million), and livelihood (P52 million).

Further, the city’s executive department has proposed over P238 million for garbage disposal, P300 million construction of Cebu City Medical Center, over P30 million for the solo parents, P2 million for the colon revitalization project, P770 million for the senior citizens, P10 million for the master plan of South Road Properties, P10 million for master plan of city’s traffic management, P722 million aid to barangays, P261 million operating expenses of City Hall’s offices and departments, among others.

“Give your unqualified support and approval to the proposed 2016 Annual Budget, set aside petty personal ambitions and political considerations and let us all show to the Cebuano People that ‘Together, we can make the best things happen for the City of Cebu’,” Rama said.

Budget Officer Marietta Gumia said the executive department has not allocated an amount for the prepayment of the SRP loan since the City Council has already included P2.3 billion to fully pay the loan under the stalled P2.8 billion Supplemental Budget-1 this year.  (FREEMAN)













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