ALL stakeholders of the Panagbenga, or Baguio Flower Festival, were encouraged to participate in a public hearing on the management of the festival on August 24.
Councilor Peter Fianza, author of the resolution that called for the public hearing, explained that the primary intention of the measure is to get the sentiments of the concerned stakeholders on how to further improve the annual conduct of the Panagbenga to sustain the influx of foreign and domestic visitors during the month-long celebration.
He said the current organizers will be asked to present potential innovations to the month-long festivities.
Other sectors invited to the August 24 Panagbenga management public hearing include representatives from the academe, business, transport, culture and arts advocates and the public.
Earlier, Mayor Mauricio Domogan underscored the need to balance the interest of the local government and the founders of the flower festival to come out with a possible "win-win solution."
The flower festival was founded in 1995 by the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and the former John Hay Poro Point Development Corporation (JPDC) through the late lawyer Damaso Bangaoet. It was created as a crowd drawer during the lean tourism months.
In 2003, the local government took over the management of the flower festival but reverted this to the foundation in 2006 after two festivals were held in 2005.
The Baguio City Council has enacted an ordinance allowing the city government to take over the management of Panagbenga from the Baguio Flower Festival Foundation, Inc. to guarantee transparency. (PR)