Marañon prioritizes road network, regional budget
Marchel P. Espina (The Freeman) - December 26, 2015 - 9:00am

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines – Road network and budget will be the priorities of Negros Occidental Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr. when he will be formally installed as the first chairman of the Negros Island Development Council by President Benigno Aquino III.

For more development in Negros island, Marañon said road network shall be prioritized because it will “boost the interconnectedness of Negros Island Region.”

The governor said roads are the key to development, citing the Bacolod-Silay Airport Access Road, which connects Bacolod City to its neighboring cities: Talisay, Silay and Victorias. “We’ll extend to Cadiz City, and eventually to Escalante City,” he said.

“We only have one road network in the whole province, there should be another one,” Marañon said, as he pointed out that the traffic is now starting to congest. He also said he would want to build a central road, which is shorter in distance, that will connect southern Negros Occidental to Negros Oriental.

His proposal is to construct a road that will pass through Himamaylan City in Occidental to Tayasan town in Oriental, which is only 35 kilometers. The travel distance would be shorter than in traversing the Kabankalan-Mabinay roads, which spans 65 kilometers.

The road in Tayasan was already completed, so it would be up to the Occidental side to connect the road, said Marañon, adding that he already talked to Department of Public Works and Highways-18 interim regional head Leah Delfinado about it, “We will propose this to the DPWH so it will be included in the 2017 budget,” he said.

Marañon said he will also prioritize the budget of the new Region 18 (Negros Island Region) for 2017, and start to work on it by January next year. The local government units however must submit their requests for funds the soonest time for submission to the concerned line agencies.

Negros Occidental Vice Governor Eugenio Lacson said he was “happy” Marañon was named as the first NIDC chairman. “I knew all along it will happen. We all know how close he is to the president. So, there was no doubt that it will be given to him,” he said.

Meanwhile, Lacson believed the future of the NIR will not be affected if Liberal Party standard bearer Mar Roxas will not win the presidential bid in the 2016 elections.

“I don’t think any president can afford to go against the NIR. Of course, whoever sits down there will extend his arm to help. I know that under the leadership of the governor, we would be able to touch base whoever will sit down in Malacañang, but we still prefer Roxas sitting down in the palace,” Lacson added. (FREEMAN)

ACIRC ATILDE BACOLOD CITY BACOLOD-SILAY AIRPORT ACCESS ROAD CADIZ CITY DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND HIGHWAYS ESCALANTE CITY HIMAMAYLAN CITY NEGROS NEGROS ISLAND REGION ROAD
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