Executive dep’t proposes additional budget of P963M

Cebu City Hall
Cebu City HallPhoto by Yans Baroy

CEBU City’s executive department is asking close to P1 billion for the first supplemental budget (SB1) in 2024 to cover, among other items, more than P100 million for the Charter Day bonus of casual and regular employees.

During Cebu City Hall’s online program “Pagsusi, Pagtuki, Pagsuta” on Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024, City Budget Officer Jerone Castillo justified the need to have a supplemental budget of P963 million, saying it is an urgent matter.

Castillo said there are five items included in the supplemental budget, but he did not mention the fifth item.

He said P600 million is intended for the design and construction of 600 transitional housing units.

Transitional housing is for those who will be affected by the Gubat sa Baha, families who reside within the three-meter easement zones.

Castillo said the second item is for the Charter Day bonus of casual and regular employees, amounting to more than P120 million. He said they had yet to decide how much job order personnel will receive as service incentive.

Castillo said P21 million is allocated for adjustments for the City Council, as covered by an ordinance. He explained that it is a sort of upgrade necessary for the council to comply with the Civil Service Commission (CSC), but he did not provide any details on how the amount will be spent or what kind of upgrade the CSC required.

For the Palarong Pambansa, Castillo said the proposed amount is P205 million to cover the installation of LED outdoor-field lights at the Cebu City Sports Center amounting to P23 million, for the construction and installation of digital-visual LED display with support frames and post worth P135.19 million, and the construction of the grandstand extension amounting to P47 million.

The amount will be on top of the P200 million already allocated for the rehabilitation of sports facilities.

Castillo said the City Development Council already approved the proposed sources of funds for the items in the SB1.

He said it is now up to the council to examine carefully and deliberate the proposed measure under the doctrine of checks and balances.

Castillo said the executive department is ready to explain the necessity and urgency of having the supplemental budget.


He said they plan to realign and reprogram the budget of unimplemented projects from 2014 to 2019 to fund the SB1.

He said that when they started deliberations, the Local Finance Committee looked carefully at the possible sources of funds.

Based on the instructions of Mayor Michael Rama, Castillo said they don’t need to raise additional cash, but they will instead look at built-in programs that are no longer needed.

He said there are various projects under the local development fund which are supported by cash backups.

“Wala pa ni ma implement nga mga projects (These projects have yet to be implemented). That’s why pwede e-reprogram (we can reprogram) and realign,” he said.

He said these projects, which were proposed by barangays, had unresolved issues. That was why these were not implemented.

“These are barangay-based projects nga irrelevant na gani i-execute karon because of the prices. Mao to ni sulti ang members sa local finance nga we can consider this as our funds,” Castillo said.

He said they already consulted ex-officio City Councilor Franklyn Ong, Association of Barangay Councils president and barangay captain of Kasambagan, on the matter.

“As chief, siya ang magtan-aw asa ang i-prioritize nga projects (he will look at which projects will be prioritized),” Castillo said, adding that ultimately the mayor will decide which previous projects will be implemented.

He said they could say there is no need to implement these projects, but they see the necessity to realign these with the present need.

With regard to the bonus, Castillo said there is sufficient reason to provide one considering the achievements of the City that were the result of the employees’ hard work.

However, he did not cite a specific achievement.

He hoped that the proposed amount, which is P25,000, would be approved.

He said they need to be fiscally responsible in giving bonuses by seeing to it that there are enough funds for the purpose.

Last Jan. 9, SunStar Cebu reported that Cebu City Hall has 10,000 employees, and not 7,000 as initially believed.

City Administrator Collin Rosell said there was a significant oversight in determining the exact number of employees at City Hall.

He said the Human Resource and Development Office initially disclosed a count of at least 7,000, only to revise the number to 10,000. / AML


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