BACOLOD City Mayor Evelio Leonardia already submitted the proposed P2.6-billion annual budget for 2021 to the City Council for its approval.
Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran said Tuesday, October 20, that they already received the proposed budget for 2021 and they will study it.
He said the proposed budget is about 13 percent lower than this year's P3-billion budget.
"We will study and review the proposed budget if there's a need to increase or decrease the proposed annual budget for 2021," he added.
Familiaran noted that the proposed budget was submitted by Leonardia on October 16, and the committee on finance chaired by Councilor Cindy Rojas will also hold a public hearing with various department heads to discuss their respective budget.
Leonardia also said that Bacolod City will slow down because of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.
"Bacolod was accelerating very fast during the past years. It took us 80 years to reach our first billion budget, but it only took us nine years to reach the second billion and only two years to reach the third billion. So that's how fast we were growing, but all of a sudden because of this pandemic, we have to slow down," Leonardia said.
He said that for the first time, after a long time, the budget dropped by about 13 percent but he believes that this is very understandable.
He added that the proposed budget will not affect the funds for the City Health Office since the health concern is now the priority because of the pandemic.
This year's budget prioritizes health services, the solid waste management, social welfare services, public order and safety, anti-drug campaign as in line with the national thrust, improvement of traffic management, economic and infrastructure development, tourism and education.
Leonardia said this year's P3-billion annual budget is up by a high 19 percent over 2018's budget, one of the highest increases in the city's local budget history.