BAGUIO CITY – (9 June 2021) – Of its 2021 annual budget of P1.9 billion, the city government has obligated P741.2 million or an obligation rate of 39 percent as the local finance committee continues to monitor collections and spending, find ways to support priority needs of local government departments and release funds in the “most expedient manner.”

Thus, reported city budget officer Atty. Leticia Clemente in Monday’s flag-raising rites at City Hall headed by Mayor Benjamin Magalong where she said the goal is to implement all the city’s programs, projects and activities (PPAs) by the end of the year yet still generating a surplus thru the efficient use of funds.

On coronavirus-2019 operations, she said the city is working on a 195 million supplemental budget for the year plus a carryover fund of P21 million from last year, totaling P216 million, where P120 million is for the procurement of vaccines.

The balance of P95 million is for operations of the city’s triage, isolation facilities and other covid-related activities, Clemente said.

“We have thus far, obligated or used up the amount of P61 million leaving a balance of P34 million.  Hopefully, this can tide us over until the end of the year,” she said.

She said P34 million has been obligated as of May this year and allotted for vaccination operations, supplies, medicines, laboratories, utilities, janitorial and security services, including wages of doctors and nurses hired for the isolation and triage facilities, contact tracers and encoders.

P18 million was spent for meals of 3,736 covid patients at the city’s isolation facilities from January to May this year with Philhealth remitting P23 million as reimbursement of expenses for local covid patients at isolation facilities since April of last year, Clemente said.

More remittances are expected in the coming days, she said, as the procession of applications has been facilitated with the addition of administrative staff at the isolations facilities.

“As the Mayor often reminds us, we should leave politics out of the picture and continue to work in unison of purpose and stay focused on how to make life better for the residents of Baguio.  After all, leaders come and go but government and the services it provides are here to stay,” Clemente said. – Gaby B. Keith