THE Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO) has proposed a P300 million budget increase in 2023 for the purchase of heavy equipment on top of an additional P250 million needed for its digital traffic system.

The proposed budget increase will, in effect, double the CCTO’s budget from its P245 million annual budget in 2022 to P549 million in 2023.

CCTO head Raquel Arce explained to SunStar Cebu on Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2022 that they sought to increase the budget since they plan to acquire additional motor vehicles and heavy-duty tow trucks.

The budget for 2023 is bigger because, in 2021 and 2022, there was no budget allocation for capital outlay, Arce said.

Under the CCTO’s budget proposal, funds allocated for the salaries of casual employees for 2023 have been reduced to P70.9 million compared to the P118 million budget in 2022.

Arce recently announced that a total of 154 casual employees who are mostly traffic enforcers will lose their jobs since the budget allocation for personal services has already breached the ceiling set by the Department of Budget and Management.

More assets

The CCTO has allocated P60 million for the purchase of one heavy-duty tow truck and one regular tow truck that can be used to remove illegally parked vehicles and those stuck on the road due to accidents or malfunction.

Arce said the CCTO has only been borrowing the heavy-duty tow truck of Mandaue City in times of road accidents that involve large vehicles.

The CCTO also plans to buy additional motorcycles at a cost of around P7 million.

Arce said compared to four-wheeled vehicles, motorcycles are more effective in responding to road emergencies, especially in times of heavy traffic.

Arce assured the additional assets will result in better services for motorists and commuters.

Meanwhile, aside from the capital outlay, the CCTO has allocated P250 million as additional funds for phase 3 of the digital traffic system project.

The digital traffic system has a total project cost of P1 billion staggered in four phases.