For 2017 expenses: Capitol wants P3.6B budget
Le Phyllis F. Antojado ( - November 3, 2016 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - The executive department of the Cebu provincial government is proposing a budget of P3.6 billion for 2017.

The amount is higher by 5.1 percent or P175 million than this year's budget of P3.4 billion.

Budget officer Danilo Rodas said the proposed 2017 budget is higher owing to the increase of Capitol's share of the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) which is P2.9 billion, higher than the P2.5 billion last year.

Of the P3.6 billion, P881.9 million is allocated for hospital operations. The amount is higher by 24.4 percent from the 646.1 million budget this year.

Rodas said the increase will be used to upgrade provincial hospitals in Carcar City and Danao City from Level 1 to Level 2. A level 1 hospital has a 50-bed capacity while a Level 2 hospital has a 150-bed capacity.

Governor Hilario Davide himself told the Provincial Board: "They will be equipped with the necessary hospital equipment and personnel such as CT-Scan, MRI, X-Ray and other diagnostic equipment. Our constituents can surely benefit from these improvements because these two provincial hospitals are strategically located with better accessibility."

Developing the two hospitals, Davide said, will decongest the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center.

The budget for the purchase of medicines and medical supplies also rose substantially to P30 million from the current P23.8 million.

The Provincial Health Office itself is asking for a separate allocation of P488 million, which is 12 percent higher than this year's P433 million.

Meanwhile, the office of the governor P614.8 million has been budgeted for the Office of the Governor, higher than its P607 million budget for 2016.

Almost all departments in the provincial government have asked for a bigger budget for 2017.

Frontline offices such as the Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) asked for P135 million, the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office asked for P166 million, the Veterinarian's Office asked for P34.6M, and the Provincial Agriculture's Office asked for P109.5 million.

As part of province's countryside development project, Capitol allocated P26.9M for the farmers and fisher folk to equip them with facilities and tools to increase production.

Capitol is also proposing a budget of P40 million for the Farmer Scientist Research Development and Extension Training Program and another P3.1 million for the Fisherfolk Scientist RDE Training Program.

Some offices, however, have asked for smaller budgets for next year.

The Engineering's Office, for one, only wants P86.3 million next year, way lower than its current budget of P146 million.

The Provincial Planning and Development Office's budget for 2017 is down to P32 million from its 2016 budget of P44 million. The Provincial General Services Office is also down to P129 million from P147 million, and the Provincial Treasurer's Office is down to P82 million from its 2016 budget of P137 million.

Even the Office of the Vice Governor and the Provincial Board have smaller budgets for 2017 compared to this year.

The Office of the Vice Governor has proposed a budget of P65 million, a bit lower than this year's P62 million. The PB's budget for 2017 is only P134 million, lower compared to this year's P178 million.

Meanwhile, Rodas said the executive is asking for P10 million for the Paglaum Scholarship Program. The scholarship covers victims of pornography, rape, and human trafficking, as well as orphans, children of single parents, children in conflict with the law, and children of drug "surrenderers".

Also included in the proposed budget is the P74 million for the first year amortization payment of for Capitol's P200 million loan from the Land Bank of the Philippines. The money, which Capitol plans to pay in three years, was used to purchase heavy and light equipment.

The Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) gets a budget of P118.6 million, also higher than its current budget of P102 million. The money will be used to construct more detention cells and improve the infirmary for which P10 million is allocated.

The Cebu South Bus Terminal, one of Capitol's income generating entities, has asked for a budget of P43 million, higher by six million than its 2016 budget of P38 million. (FREEMAN)




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