Board awaits DILG opinion on 2013 budget-A A +A
Friday, January 18, 2013
THE Provincial Board (PB) of Negros Occidental still awaits the opinion of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) about its disapproval of the 2013 annual budget.
Vice gubernatorial bet former San Carlos City mayor Eugenio "Bong" Lacson, meanwhile, offers a suggestion to break the impasse at the PB over the budget issue and give way to Capitol employees' salary increase.
The PB has not proceeded with two regular sessions already pending the DILG opinion whether they can take up other agenda aside from the unapproved budget during the session.
In his letter to DILG regional director Evelyn Trompeta, Board Member Emilio Yulo III said they are seeking the legal opinion of the DILG on the interpretation of Section 323 of Republic Act 7160 and further inquire whether the PB can take up other business during sessions, even if it failed to pass an ordinance authorizing the annual appropriations at the beginning of the fiscal year.
"The PB has disapproved on second reading the proposed 2013 Annual General Fund Budget of the province in the amount if P1.9 million during December 19, 2012 regular session and, thereafter, there was no quorum for the regular session on December 26, 2012 and January 2, 2013,” the letter stated.
“In the January 9, 2013 regular session, included among the various items under the calendar of business are the different ordinances and resolutions of the different LGUs, various endorsements from the office of the Governor, a letter from the governor requesting for reconsideration of the disapproval of the 2013 General Fund Budget, resolutions of the Provincial Development Council for concurrence by the PB and letter containing the veto of the governor of the five items contained in Supplemental Budget No. 6, Series of 2012 which were disapproved by the SP," Yulo added in his letter.
Yulo said they seek the opinion of the DILG due to the SP's earnest desire that, once they act on such items, they would not encounter problems with certain legal issues on the action they had taken.
Meanwhile, in an emailed statement to Sun.Star Bacolod, Lacson stated, "The Executive & Legislative branches of the Provincial Government should find a way to address the concerns of the Provincial Government employees first before continuing the debate on the 20-percent Development Fund.
I suggest the temporary withdrawal of the proposed budget by the Governor from the PB and specify the projects he wished to be funded under the 20-percent Development Fund for the sake of transparency, and as response to the wishes of the majority in the PB.
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on January 18, 2013.