Council OKs P300M for new city hospital

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Friday, March 21, 2014


THE Cebu City Council approved the P325-million first supplemental budget (SB 1) pushed by the executive department.

The P300 million will be used for the rebuilding of the Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC).

Some councilors failed to attend the session because of the short notice, but it was enough to muster a quorum.

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Former councilor and Atty. Jose Daluz III said it was necessary to fast-track the approval of the supplemental budget so the City can start the bidding process.

Bidding cannot be pursued without the source of fund.

The executive had to realign from the budget appropriation of the Department of Engineering and Public Works (DEPW).

The lump sum appropriation under the drainage master plan projects has a total of P398 million, P200 million of which was realigned to be used in the CCMC construction.

Another P80 million were realigned from the right-of-way-acquisition of the drainage master plan projects and another P50 million from river improvement.

“We have chosen these accounts because the realignment of the aforementioned budget appropriations would not affect the financial capability and position of the City nor will this affect the priority drainage project as we have substantial funds for the purpose,” read the communication from the local finance committee to Councilor Noel Wenceslao, the vice chairperson of the committee on budget and finance.

Finance committee

The local finance committee is composed of City Planning Officer Kenneth Carmelita Enriquez, Budget Officer Marietta Gumia and City Treasurer Diwa Cuevas.

The Council also approved yesterday the Cebu City Development Council resolution approving the supplementary Annual Investment Program (AIP), which supported the P325 million SB1.

Inclusion

The development council also endorsed the construction / expansion completion of the CCMC in the amount of P1 billion for inclusion in the 2015 Department of Health (DOH) 7 budget under its health facility enhancement program.

The same was submitted to the Regional Development Council (RDC) 7 for endorsement to the National Government.

On the passage of SB 1, Councilor Sisinio Andales said that there should be a provision in the budget ordinance that the P300 million be “exclusively for the construction of CCMC.”

Councilor Alvin Dizon also made a corollary motion that the Council be regularly updated on the construction of the CCMC in the spirit of transparency.

Councilor Gerardo Carillo explained that realignment of present budget appropriation is allowed for programs based on calamity.

The CCMC building was abandoned and is now being demolished after it was damaged by the 7.2 magnitude earthquake last Oct. 15.

Vice Mayor Edgardo Labella and Councilor Mary Ann de los Santos thanked the members of the Council for attending the special session so that a budget will be readily available once construction starts.

De los Santos is the chairperson of the CCMC ad hoc committee.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 22, 2014.

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