DA infuses P200 million for Baguio projects

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BAGUIO CITY – The local government is grateful to the present administration of the agriculture department for earmarking a total of P200 million to bankroll the implementation of various agriculture-related projects in the country’s undisputed Summer Capital.

Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong reported Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol committed some P150 million to convert the existing Baguio Dairy Farm into a state-of-the-art dairy production research center with a good number of milk-producing cows to be brought in while some P50 million will be used to improve the existing Maharlika Livelihood Center located right at the heart of the city.

The city chief executive said the funds earmarked by the agriculture department for its properties in the city will definitely be a big help in improving the existing situation in the agency’s properties that are expected to generate jobs for the residents and improve economic activities in the city thereby enhancing the livelihoods of the people.

“We deeply appreciate the commitment of Secretary Piñol to provide the needed funds to improve the agency’s properties located in the city and to make the same productive pursuant to existing standards,” Mayor Magalong stressed.

In the early 1980s, the national government entered into an agreement with the local government for the use of a city-owned property located right at the heart of the city for the put up of a multi-storey structure to serve as a livelihood center for small and medium entrepreneurs, the Maharlika Livelihood Center.

Under the said agreement, the Human Settlements Development Corporation will operate the said center and will turnover the property including all improvements to the local government by 2025.

On the other hand, the 92-hectare Baguio Dairy Farm property is also a government property under the care and administration of the agriculture department supposed to serve as a center for dairy production in Northern Luzon considering the conducive weather condition for the production of quality dairy products from the animals cared for in the area.

Earlier, the agriculture department ceded to the city government some 8.1 hectares from the said property through a recent deed of usufruct to be used by the latter for various uses beneficial to the greater majority of the populace.

Aside from the P200 million promised by the DA official to bankroll the implementation of the agency’s flagship projects in the city, Magalong claimed the P20 million committed by Secretary Piñol for the put up of a centralized technology-based piggery farm in Tuba, Benguet will also significantly help in curbing the proliferation of backyard piggeries in the different parts of the city that have been identified as one of the source of pollutants in the city’s major river systems over the past several years.

From the P20 million, P10 million will be used to construct the road leading to the site of the centralized piggery farm which is expected to be situated within a 3-hectare public property while the other P10 million will be used for the put up of the required facilities of the project. By Dexter A. See