LA Castellana Mayor Alme Rhummyla Nicor - Mangilimutan has expressed optimism that her "dreams" for the town will finally be realized within the next three years of her administration.

This, after the municipal government has been granted P450 million in loan by the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) needed to fund various priority projects.

The three-termer mayor announced this development on the sidelines of the inauguration and oath-taking ceremonies of the newly-elected officials at the town's auditorium on Tuesday, June 29.

Nicor-Mangilimutan said the local government has sought for a certification and authority from the Department of Finance (DOF) which determines the loanable amount.

"This sufficient fund will enable us to implement the plans and programs, especially those I promised before the elections," she said, adding that among these priority projects is the establishment of the P120-million sanitary landfill at town's Barangay Manghanoy.

In April this year, the municipal government obtained the title for the 11.1-hectare property that will host the sanitary landfill.

The project is positioned to address the garbage woes as well as provide income and livelihood generation to the locals.

The mayor hoped that the sanitary landfill will address the garbage problems in the southern Negros Occidental locality.

The town is eyeing the conversion of garbage into useful materials like chairs and tables.

It will also be acquiring a bio composter machine to produce fertilizer using the biodegradable wastes, and pulverizer to produce bricks that can be used in beautifying the roads.

"We look forward to not just an ordinary landfill that can address our garbage problems, but also job generation for the constituents near the area and at the same time livelihood for those who want to sell there," Nicor-Mangilimutan earlier said, adding that "our plan is to make it an eco-friendly sanitary landfill."

Following the granting of the loan, the local government may start the bidding process for the construction of the sanitary landfill in August this year, the mayor said.

"We will follow the procurement process. For now, we have asked the municipal council to pass an appropriations ordinance specifically for the [loaned] amount," she said, reiterating that there's another P30 million fund from the Provincial Government of Negros Occidental.

There will be a separate bay for nearby localities with no sanitary landfill to also dispose their garbage at the facility, Nicor-Mangilimutan said.

Along with the construction of the sanitary landfill, the town will also prioritize the procurement of 13 dump trucks, 13 emergency and rescue vehicles, and heavy equipment that will complement the project as well as road concreting and electrification of the area going to its site.

Other projects to be funded using the loan included the construction of the 25-bed capacity infirmary at Barangay Robles and community college, drainage system and market development, installation of water system, and road improvement, among others.

"With the cooperation of the members of the [town] council which for sure will continue under the leadership of my father, Vice Mayor Alberto Nicor Jr., we are positive to make our dreams a reality," Nicor-Mangilimutan said.

She added that "these projects are also income generating so it can pay for our loan."

Meanwhile, the mayor, in her inaugural address, said this is a start of a new chapter, the beginning of leaving a legacy to the people of La Castellana.

Nicor-Mangilimutan recalled that when she was elected in 2016, she made history as the first lady mayor and the centennial mayor of La Castellana.

"Despite the challenges and criticisms, I crafted a 10-point agenda to be able to address the weaknesses and loopholes that I have identified prior to my term," she said.

Nicor-Mangilimutan took pride in her administration's sustained efforts to boost peace and order, tourism, education, trade, investments, and health which is crucial amid the prevailing coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic, among others.

In her last term as mayor, Nicor-Mangilimutan said she wanted to leave a legacy, a system of good governance and administration.

"[I will] encourage meaningful stakeholder participation and advocate for sustainable development for the benefit of all," she said, adding that "I do believe that we could all rise together, and that no one would be left behind when it comes to progress and development."*