Five-hour session

Lawmakers yesterday approved on second reading the city’s 2015 budget amounting to P5,813,841,960 after deliberating on the proposal for more than five hours.

The annual budget comprises allocations for the development fund, general fund proper, and the economic enterprises of the city.

The development fund represents infrastructure projects at P377,634,412, and the non-infrastructure work at P716,424,285, with a total of P1,094,058,697.

The City Mayor’s Office under the general proper received the bulk of the remaining P4.5 billion budget in the amount of P1,691,979,732, which is intended for the continued operations of the Lingap Program, the peace and order fund, and operations of the Central 911 and Traffic Management Center.

“The amount is intended to fund for the programs of the Mayor [Rodrigo Duterte] such as the barangay auxiliary personnel,” said Councilor Danilo Dayanghirang, chair of the committee on finance, at the Pulong-pulong ni Pulong (PPP) forum in Sangguniang Panlungsod.

Personal  Services under the general fund proper is placed at P1,108,738,660, around P2.9 million lower than the current year’s allocation for the same account.

In a committee report, the reason for the reduced budget for salaries and benefits was due to the lack of budget for the Productivity Incentive Benefits (PIB).

The PIB is instead placed under the Miscellaneous Personnel Benefits in accordance with a directive from the Department of Budget and Management.

Economic enterprises meanwhile at P129,862,807 will fund the operations of the city’s nine public markets, nine cemeteries, one sea port, Magsaysay Park, the Davao City Recreation Center, Davao City Overland Transport Terminal, the slaughterhouse, and the Davao City Pasalubong Center.

During the deliberations at city council yesterday, all department heads were available to comment on clarifications needed by the councilors.

However at the PPP, Dayanghirang said next year’s budget will encourage councilors to be more circumspect with their spending.

“We encourage them to exhaust remedies in their offices. We will not provide funding for purchases like 4×4 cars in accordance with a mandate from the mayor,” he said.