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Use of unobligated funds to augment city’s COVID response seen

THE City Council committee on finance, budget and appropriations chaired by Councilor Edna M. Dahino during its recent meeting discussed the special reports of Councilors Roger G. Abaday and Jocelyn B. Rodriguez for the realignment of the balances of the Savings and Unobligated Funds, including the offices of the 19

councilors to augment the City’s Vaccination Program and Cash Assistance to the people of the city during the declaration of the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) in the city.

According to the City Budget Officer, the balances, amounting to P226,837,764.26 (for 2020) and P482,257.87 (as of August 12, 2021), are still enough for the city’s COVID 19 responses.

“There’s no need for us to realign because we have enough appropriations. We can back up this appropriation because we are receiving Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) plus ang mga surplus last year, it’s just a matter of prioritization. So, since COVID is urgent, pirme gyud na siya priority and we always certify its availability ug dili nato pwede i-postpone,” Atty. Percy Salazar said

She added that the balances on the savings and unobligated funds can only be realigned if the city does not have enough appropriations to respond to COVID expenditures.

“Nasabtan kaayo nato ang explanation ni Atty. Salazar nga naay kwarta kay naay appropriations thus we need not revert. Ang unsa lang gyud importante lang gyud kay gakahadlok pud ang atong mayor nga basin di ta makasakat paingon sa Disyembre, we should understand that kay iya sad na nga responsibility. Let us know na lang sa atong mga balances, kay nia ra atong gahum diri, to act on what we can do,” stressed Councilor Dahino.

While the summary or the actual balances of the 18 city councilors were not determined during the meeting, Councilor Rodriguez’ balances, however, was disclosed and may be realigned thru a Legislative Order from the Office of the Vice Mayor.

“What we need to issue is only the Certificate of Availability of Funds (CAF). I have to say that kung realignment man gud ta or augmentation ang among ma-certify lang is only the savings from the 1 st and 2 nd quarters, ang wala nagamit (balances). If you want to realign, the whole amount should be subjected to Supplemental Budget but if it is only for augmentation, the savings can be used for other items,” she further explained.

A resolution was proposed appropriating the balances in the budgets of all city councilors to augment the city’s COVID response fund.


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