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DILG consults local executives on future of BUB funds

In a bid to know the stand of local government units on the utilization of Bottom Up Budgeting (BUB) funds for 2017, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) held a consultative meeting with key local chief executives on August 31 in Manila.

Among the five city mayors invited, Mayor Lina Montilla was the only city mayor to arrive and represent the National Executive Board of the League of Cities of the Philippines attended the DILG consultation on the utilization of BUB funds.

Four mayors who are chapter heads of League of Municipalities of the Philippines also attended the event.

DILG Undersecretary Austere Panadero headed the consultation panel.

Spearheaded by the Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP), the activity seeks to solicit the views of local chief executives relative to the BUB utilization next year.

Prior to the consultation, there is uncertainty as to the continuation of BUB implementation due to change of administration despite the fact that for 2017 National Expenditure Plan, the amount of P15.8 billion has already been listed under the Local Government Support Fund as BUB funds.

BUB is the government’s participatory budgeting program that provides subsidy to cities and municipalities intended for their poverty alleviation projects. Tacurong is a BUB recipient since 2015.

Among the crucial points discussed during the consultation was the move to remove the cities as BUB beneficiaries but Mayor Montilla insisted that there is a need to retain the cities on the list of LGU beneficiaries since that many lower class cities depend largely on the help provided by BUB funds.

The consultation arrived to a consensus that there is a need to continue the BUB program but the DILG said that there would be changes in the implementation guidelines. Moreover, there is a plan to rename the BUB to “Assistance to Disadvantaged LGUs”. By Allan S. Freno (LGU Tacurong City Information)

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DBM Hands Over P5 Million Incentive to Tacurong City

“The Daang Matuwid is difficult. That’s why the government makes it a point to recognize hard work.” – Sec. Florencio “Butch” Abad

Department of Budget and Management Secretary, Hon. Florencio “Butch” Abad, together with Regional Director Akmad J. Usman of DBM Region XII, and Asec. Maxine Tanya M. Hamada of DBM Monitoring and Evaluation, personally visited the City of Tacurong on December 17, 2015 to turnover the P5 million incentive that the city was awarded for the prompt implementation of Bottoms-Up Budgeting (BUB) projects for CY 2015.

Among all the LGUs in the country, the City of Tacurong has been lauded for its prompt, efficient, and transparent implementation of more than 50% of its BUB projects slated for 2015. There are only two LGUs in the country awarded with the incentive, the other one being Ilagan City of Isabela.

The said incentive was announced during the Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP) meeting, which Hon. Lina O. Montilla attended, on December 2, 2015 in Manila.

The turnover ceremony in Palm Bistro, Tacurong City was attended by the city mayor herself, Vice Mayor Joseph George Lechonsito, members of the Sangguniang Panlungsod, the different barangay captains of the city, and the Local Poverty Reduction Action Team.

In her acceptance speech, City Mayor Lina O. Montilla expressed her gratitude to the DBM and the national government for continually recognizing the city’s efforts in ensuring good public service to the constituents by way of awards and incentives. The mayor said that it serves as the city’s motivation to keep on working hard for the benefit of all Tacurongnons.

“We firmly assure you that every single peso will be put to good use and will be consciously turned into rational programs that will benefit those who belong to the lower bracket of the society as they are the ones who need it most.”- Hon. Lina O. Montilla

(Yen Robles, Tacurong-Information)

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LPRAT Formulate 2017 BUB Projects in Workshop

The Local Poverty Reduction Action Team (LPRAT) of Tacurong held a Local Poverty Reduction Action Plan (LPRAP) workshop at Jim’s Place II on November 18, 2015. Facilitated by the City Government of Tacurong and the DILG, the said workshop aimed to identify Bottom Up Budgeting projects for 2017.

Participants for the LPRAP included representatives from the different national government agencies and LPRAT, whose members are composed of 50% representation from the Civil Society Organization (CSO) and 50% from the government.

During the workshop, poverty indicators in the city were presented so as to help the members identify properly the BUB projects that would best help the marginally poor constituents. The poverty indicators identified malnourished children, out of school youth, informal settlers; indigents without access to safe water, toilet, and sanitation; indigents living below the food threshhold; and the unemployed.

Representatives of the different NGAs also presented their respective “Menu of Programs”, which contained the agencies’ ready-made BUB projects on offer. The LPRAT huddled to select from these menus the right projects to implement so as to achieve poverty reduction in 2017.

The LPRAP workshop is the second phase in the formulation of BUB projects.

In her message during the workshop, City Mayor Lina O. Montilla encouraged the LPRAT to continue planning and choosing the best projects in order to help the poorest of the poor of Tacurong City. She added, “It’s not the amount of money that we receive, but how we spend it for the benefit of everyone.” (Yen Robles, LGU-Tacurong)

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Livelihood groups receive capital seed fund as 2015 BUB implementation closes

Capital seed fund worth Php4.3 million from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) was distributed among fifteen livelihood groups in Tacurong during the closing program of the 2015 Bottom-Up Budgeting for Sustainable Livelihood Program (BUB-SLP) on July 28, 2015 at the Tacurong Cultural and Sports Center.

“We hope that you make use of these funds, not only to start your livelihood, but also to keep it going in order to improve the quality of your lives,” said DSWD Regional Director Bai Zorahayda Taha.

Each group is composed of 30 members coming from different sectors of the city, in particular the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program beneficiaries. All groups underwent mandatory workshop and basic business management training in preparation for the said capital assistance. The livelihood groups were organized by LGU-Tacurong City, following the Self-Employment Assistance-Kaunlaran or SEA-K mechanism.

During the event, the City Social Welfare and Development Office also presented 218 graduates skills training under the BUB-SLP. Skills training included: consumer electronics, massage therapy, hair science and beauty culture, home care products making, and t-shirt printing. The top trainees of hair science and beauty culture received free start-up kits while all of consumer electronics trainees received their own free tool kits worth Php2,000.00 each. The massage therapy trainees were also provided with NC II certification from TESDA, after having passed the assessment.

A total of 653 recipients benefited from the BUB-SLP 2015 cycle.

Moreover, DSWD – XII and LGU – Tacurong City pledged assistance in finding employment for the skills training graduates.
The BUB-SLP 2015 cycle was implemented by LGU-Tacurong, in partnership with the DSWD and the Department of the Interior Local Government (DILG).

Present during the event were City Mayor Lina Montilla, Regional Director Bai Zorahayda of DSWD- Region XII, Eufemia Robles of the City Social Welfare and Development (CSWD), Alberto Sero of DILG – Tacurong, provincial coordinator Jonathan Mandi, and Councilor Rodrigo Jamorabon.

The Bottom-Up Budgeting program, also known as Grassroots Participatory Budgeting, is an initiative of the DILG in partnership with other agencies such as DBM, DSWD, and NAPC among others. With BUB, citizen participation in governance is encouraged in order to directly identify and address the inequity, poverty and marginalization of the poor. Envisioned by the late DILG Secretary Jessie Robredo, the BUB program stems from the right of citizens to participate in local governance as provided for by the 1987 Constitution with the Local Government Code of 1991 paving the means for the LGU to put such right into action. (LGU-Tacurong City Information)

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LGU hires 424 SPES beneficiaries

This summer, 424 students and out-of-school youths will work for the Local Government Unit (LGU) of Tacurong City under the Special Program for the Employment of Students (SPES).

The SPES beneficiaries attended the orientation conducted by the LGU on April 20, 2015 at the City Cultural and Sports Center. Mayor Lina Montilla and other city officials welcomed the newly-hired grantees during the event.

Mandated by Republic Act No. 9547, SPES aims to provide poor but deserving high school, vocational or college students the opportunity to be employed and compensated. SPES is one of the flagship programs of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in partnership with LGUs and private employers nationwide.

SPES follows the 60-40 salary scheme. On the part of the city government acting as the employer, it only needs to pay the grantees sixty percent of the grantees’ salaries while the DOLE pays the remaining 40 percent.

All SPES beneficiaries will work for a period of twenty days and will receive above minimum wage compensation. Each of the 224 old SPES grantees is set to receive P7, 000.00 salaries while the 200 newly-hired ones will each receive P6, 000.00.

The increase in the SPES budget this year also paved way for higher salaries compared to the meager P4, 000.00 each grantee received last year.

The number of SPES beneficiaries this year increased by more than a hundred as the LGU received additional budget of P900 thousand out of the Bottom Up Budgeting (BUB) funds intended for the summer employment program this year.

Bishop David Salazar, representing the religious organizations in the Ugnayan ng Barangay at Simbahan or UBAS, was also present during the orientation to inform the grantees on the role of the church in monitoring the implementation of BUB-funded projects.

Aside from the BUB fund, LGU Tacurong earmarked P1 Million from its regular fund for the summer job program.

This 2015, DOLE Regional Office XII is the first in the country to implement the Online SPES. Under the Online SPES, all steps in the SPES process (from pledging to payment of their salaries) go online using the SPES portal created by DOLE XII.

DOLE XII Regional Director Ofelia Domingo is happy to note that other DOLE regional offices are keen of adopting the DOLE XII Online SPES model. (LGU Tacurong City Information)

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