THE Mandaue City Government will operate this year with a P1.89-billion budget, which is nine percent higher than last year.

The bulk of the 2014 budget, approved by the City Council and signed by Mayor Jonas Cortes last month, will go to general services at P1.63 billion.

The budget includes the 20 percent development fund from the Internal Revenue Allotment, amounting to P99.68 million.

Under the budget, P87.02 million will be allocated for the City Public Market, P50.56 million for the City Hospital, P19.24 million for the City Slaughterhouse and P10.55 million for the City Sports and Cultural Complex.

Last year, the City operated with a P1.73-billion budget.

In a phone interview, Councilor Diosdado Suico, chair of the committee on budget, said the council approved the budget proposed by the executive department’s local finance committee, without any changes.

City department heads earlier proposed a total of P2.28 billion for the 2014 budget. The General Services Department and the City Engineer’s Office proposed the highest budgets at P491 million and P187 million, respectively.

The local finance committee slashed the proposed budget after considering the City’s expected revenues this year.

In an earlier interview, City Administrator James Abadia said the City aims to procure heavy equipment for drainage and road projects this year.

He said the City will meet its 2014 budget through intensified tax mapping efforts.

The City Treasurer’s Office raised its collection of business taxes and registration fees by 26 percent last year.

Aside from agressively going after businesses that operate without permit or under expired license, the City has increased the fines for establishments that fail to comply with regulatory permits like sanitation and building permits.

From P500, the City increased the penalty to P5,000.