Baguio did not incur debt – Domogan

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BAGUIO CITY  – The city government did not acquire any debt from local and international financial lending institutions over the past two decades because the affairs of the local government were appropriately managed by transparent and accountable leaders.

Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan said the share of the local government from the internal revenue allotment (IRA) complimented by internally generated resources were more than enough to effectively and efficiently implement priority development projects and enhance the delivery of basic services to the people through the yeast several decades, thus, obtaining loans from various local and international financial lending institutions was never part of his agenda.

“It has never been my policy to secure loans because it will affect the good financial standing of our city. I do not also like to pass on to the future indebtedness that will affect the implementation of projects and delivery of services to our people,” Domogan stressed.

He revealed that even during his first three terms from 1992 to 2001 when the city was trying to recover from the rubbles of the July 16, 1990 killer earthquake, his administration did not resort to obtaining loans just to bankroll the implementation of numerous development projects that allowed the city to rise up from the extreme damages that it suffered.

According to him, together with former Rep. Bernardo M. Vergara, they individual and collectively worked in sourcing out additional funds from the national government to help re-build the city and achieve the growth that it is currently experiencing having been identified as a premier tourist destination, investment hub and one of the ten next wave cities in the country for the possible expansion of business process outsourcing companies.

He explained the city grew through the own initiative of city officials over the past two decades and what the city is now should be attributed to their resiliency and their passion to bring the city to greater nights for the benefit of the present and future generations.

From an annual budget of less than P100 million in 1992, Domogan claimed the city government was able to work through a consistent increase in the annual appropriations up to P1.622 billion this year because of the rapid growth that the city underwent over the past several years primarily triggered by the transparent and good governance of the city’s leaders.

Furthermore, from over 2,000 businesses in the city right after the killer earthquake, he added the number of businesses in the city grew to over 18,000 last year which indicates that there is a good business climate in the city.

Despite the failure of the city government to increase real property taxes over a 19-year period and business taxes over a 16-year time frame, the local chief executive explained the city was able to address most of the priority development requirements of the barangays and the basic services needed by the populace through the years without being indebted to any of the government and private financial lending institutions that have offered to the city attractive loan packages that will be used to intensify the implementation of projects in the city.

By Dexter A. See

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