LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – The provincial board enacted an ordinance authorizing Supplemental Budget No. 1 of the provincial government under the general fund for this year amounting to P226.5 million to augment the anti-Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) response and other infrastructure projects in the different barangays.
The enactment of Ordinance No. 2021-01 was recommended by the board’s committee on budget and appropriations chaired by senior Board Member Robert Namoro.
The fund under the supplemental budget will be appropriated to augment the existing funds for the usual operation of the different offices, for the management of COVID-19 cases and for the infrastructure projects for the development of the various barangays which were not funded under this year’s annual budget.
Further, Namoro claimed that the same also includes personal services cost for the created position of one internal audit assistant under the internal audit service of the Provincial governor’s Office as per Ordinance No. 18-220.
Under the aforesaid ordinance, the source of fund for Supplemental Budget No. 1 of the provincial government shall be from various sources that were not previously appropriated for any purpose.
However, the approved supplemental budget of the provincial government will still be forwarded to the Cordillera office of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM-CAR) after the governor shall have signed the same prior to its implementation.
Namoro disclosed that bulk of the supplemental budget will be used by the provincial government to fund barangay development projects in the various barangays provincewide with a total appropriation of P182.3 million where the same projects that had been properly identified will help in spurring economic growth in the countryside with the presence of appropriate infrastructure.
According to him, more than P21 million had been provided by the provincial board for the management of COVID-19 cases where the same has been lodged with the Provincial Governor’s Office to help sustain the implementation of effective and efficient management of the increasing number of patients confined in the different health facilities and isolation centers provincewide.
The provincial board stipulated the urgent need to sustain the provincial government’s effective and efficient management of COVID-19 patients to allow them to be able to recover from the deadly virus.
Benguet is currently classified as a second-class province but it is currently operating as a first-class province, thus, the need for the government to implement the appropriate classification of the different local government units to conform with the existing situation that the same are in to help in spurring rural development not only in the province but also in other similarly situated local governments around the country.
Aside from the operation of large-scale mining companies in mineral-rich communities, Benguet drives part of its income from the lucrative agriculture sector which is the main source of livelihood of the people around the province.
Photo by Armando M. Bolislis