CAGAYAN de Oro City Mayor Oscar Moreno defended his proposed P5.8 billion budget, the biggest under his administration, saying it is a "small amount" for a growing city like Cagayan de Oro.
Moreno, in a press conference, said he is always ambitious when crafting the city budget.
"In fact, the question should be why that small, sa ubang syudad double digit na, syempre ang imong ability to deliver the services is influenced by your budget, ang imong budget is the blueprint, that's your plan, you give me your budget and I can tell you what your plans are, I can tell you whether your city will be doing well," Moreno said.
"My style is, when I create the budget, I am ambitious, dili ako kontento nga unsay last year, mao lang gihapon, I guess it's also sa akong pagkatawo, gapangambisyon gyud ko, for the city, so that we can build more schools, health centers, hospitals, and then we can fix the streets and all that, pave more roads, create livelihood programs, and Cagayan de Oro is a growing city," he added.
Moreno assured businessmen that there will be no plans to increase rates and implement more taxes.
But tax collection will be strict, he added.
The mayor said that whatever changes, there will be revisions of the assessed value of some taxes, but added, the process is still going to take at least two to three years.
The biggest portion of the budget goes to social services and infrastructure.
In 2018, Moreno said residents in the hinterlands can expect more road concreting and opening, hospitals, schools, health centers, among others.
Budget deliberations has started, and it is now in scrutiny under the committee of finance, presided over by City Councilor Teodulfo Lao Jr.
About P5,382,396,280 of the P5.8 billion budget is placed under the general fund, while the remaining P417,603,720 is allocated under the special account or the operation of the city economic enterprise.
In 2016, the City Council approved P4.5 billion of the proposed P5.4-billion budget for 2017.