THE Provincial Board of Negros Occidental approved during its regular session Wednesday, January 10, the consultancy agreements of the Provincial Government with its 14 consultants.
The approved contracts valid from January to December 2018 include that of former governor Rafael Coscolluela as consultant on investment promotions, trade and export development and inter-agency coordination.
Others are Roy Balicas for finance and administrative concerns; Nestor Bayona, community development and special projects; Marilyn Manuel, research and development and allied concerns; Engineer Leoncio Jamora, vocational, technical, engineering education and other related tasks; and Manuel Lopez, energy management and other allied concerns.
Also serving as Capitol consultant for this year are Rosemary Caunca for local governance and inter-local government alliance for agricultural productivity; Nancy Pestaño, tourism; Felix Silva, housing projects; Ma. Asuncion Belzunce, cultural arts; Milo Ibrado Jr., peace and security and special concerns; Merly Fortu, financial and fiscal operations; Epimaco Bantiling for renewable energy; and Dr. David Pedrosa , pathology, with consultancy period starting February.
Second District Board Member Salvador Escalante Jr., chairman committee on appropriation, budget, finance, ways and means, said all consultants have renewed contracts except for Fortu, who just retired from the Capitol.
Escalante said the contracts to be approved initially included 15 consultants, however, they subjected for query that of Dr. Eriberto Layda, also a consultant on pathology.
“In the case of Dr. Layda, we have yet to check the possibility of double compensation since he is also serving as consultant of Eleuterio T. Decena Memorial Hospital in Hinoba-an,” he said, adding that “once cleared, we can take this up next week.”
In terms of salary for consultants, Coscolluela and Balicas have the highest rate of about P91,000 per month. Others will receive P42,000 to P52,000 depending on the nature of their jobs and assignments.
All in all, the Provincial Government will spend up to P600,000 monthly for the salaries of these consultants.
Their wages are also covered by the Salary Standardization Law, Escalante said, adding that the highest salary for consultants last year was P72,000 then all others have P38,000 to P45,000.