LGUs told to start planning for recovery from pandemic

THE Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Thursday, August 6, 2020, urged local government units (LGU) to start planning for their recovery from the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

DILG spokesperson and Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said they have prepared the “Ready to Recover (We Rise as One) COVID-19 Local Recovery Planning Guide”, with technical support from the World Bank, to help LGUs.

He said the planning guide will simplify recovery and rehabilitation planning to give LGUs flexibility in inserting interventions.

Malaya said it has sample frameworks, templates, and suggested programs, projects, and activities.

“We need to recover now kahit ‘di pa tapos ang COVID-19 crisis kasi mas lalala ang epekto nito sa ekonomiya at kabuhayan ng ating mga kababayan,” he said.

“The DILG is collaborating with other national government agencies in the Interagency Task Force (IATF) to help LGUs prepare their recovery strategies and programs. The goal is to build back better,” he added.

Malaya said most of the localities, particularly those that were now classified as low-risk, can already start with their recovery efforts to protect jobs and stimulate economic activity.

“With private consumption and investment still down, it is now up to the national and local governments to drive consumption and investment with government spending and policies that support the growth and recovery of local businesses,” he said.

Malaya said there is no need for the LGUs to create a separate local body for the recovery planning and budgeting as it can already be done through the creation of an economic cluster within the existing Local Covid-19 Task Force headed by a mayor or governor.

The DILG listed at least 10 sources of funds as well as national government programs and financing assistance programs of select government financial institutions (GFIs) and government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs).

Among these are the Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Fund (LDRRMF), National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Fund (NDRRMF) and Quick Response Fund of national government implementing agencies such as Department of Agriculture, Department of Education and Department of Health.

Malaya said the Local Government Support Fund (LGSF)–Financial Assistance to LGUs, LGSF –Assistance to Municipalities, Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) Incentive Fund, Kapit Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services – National Community-Driven Development Program (KALAHI-CIDSS NCDDP), Regular Agency Budget and the 20% Development Fund may also serve said funding source of the LGUs.

The DILG also reminded the LGUs to communicate with their constituents their initiatives to jumpstart local recovery.

“Minsan mahirap sa gobyerno ay tayo-tayo lang nakakaalam ng ginagawa natin. ‘Pag wala sa balita, akala ng mga tao walang ginagawa ang LGUs. Let’s make use of digital tools in communicating with the people,” Malaya said. (Third Anne Peralta-Malonzo/SunStar Philippines)


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