BUGUEY, Cagayan – The League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP) – Cagayan Chapter held its 1st Regular Meeting for CY 2014 with the theme “Unity in Diversity” at Crab Hotel on February 20, 2014.
The Local Government Unit of Buguey, through the leadership of Mayor Lloyd M. Antiporda generously hosted the event. A total of twelve (12) Municipal Mayors attended the meeting. Present were Mayor Florante C. Pascual of Lal-lo, Mayor Juditas L. Trinidad of Iguig, Mayor Esterlina A. Aguinaldo-Ramos of Sta. Praxedes, Mayor Shalimar D. Tumaru of Aparri, Mayor Lloyd M. Antiporda of Buguey, Mayor Isidro T. Cabaddu of Camalaniugan, Mayor Matthew C. Nolasco of Gattaran, Mayor Lolita C. Garcia of Sta. Teresita, Mayor Kim Stephen T. Turingan of Enrile, Mayor Jesus Emmanuel P. Vargas, Mayor Asela B. Sacramed of Sanchez Mira, and Mayor Andrew Vincent R. Pagurayan of Sto. Niño.
The minutes of the previous meeting was unanimously approved by the body. Also discussed during the meeting were the updates of the resolutions passed during the past year. Mayor Lolita Garcia, the League’s Treasurer updated the group on the financial status of the league and reminded everyone of their annual dues.
The proposal of Mayor Alfonso Llopis (Calayan) to allocate five percent (5%) of the LMP fund for calamity occurrences was deliberated. Mayor Garcia argued that instead of disaster fund; why not allot a fund that will benefit the members such as a retirement fund wherein fifty percent (50%) of the total dues paid will be given to the mayor upon his/her retirement. She further reiterated that there should be a fee to be lessened from the retirement pay for every corresponding absence during meetings.
Mayor Antiporda presented his proposal entitled, “Local Government Consortium on Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Disaster Risk Financing-Risk Pooling”. It basically encourages the putting up of a common fund to be utilized for disaster, recovery and rehabilitation of health facilities. He stated that the amount to be lent shall not exceed seventy percent (70%) of the calamity fund of the borrowing municipality and that such money should be paid within the year that it was borrowed. Mayor Pascual suggested adopting the Bayanihan Fund Program of the LMP National since the concept is just almost the same. Mayor Trinidad stated that before the body approves the proposal of Mayor Antiporda, certain guidelines should be set so as to avoid disagreements in the future.
The active local chief executive of Buguey proposed another resolution, this time, soliciting support of the League of the retention of Mr. Francisco A. Fernando as Senior Agrarian Reform Program Technologist-Caretaker of the Municipal Agrarian Reform Office of Buguey, Cagayan. Said proposal was unanimously approved by the body.
Mayor Pentecostes, through his representative, similarly asked for the body to approve the resolution endorsing the appointment of Engr. Felipa S. Sumer, Principal Engineer A of the National Irrigation Administration-Baua River Irrigation System of Sta. Cruz, Gozaga, Cagayan as OIC-Division Manager A at the Irrigation Management Office covering the Province of Cagayan and Batanes.
The possibility of a foreign trip was also discussed. The President let the lady mayors decide on what country to visit. They obliged and proposed to go to Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia for four (4) days and three (3) nights, which the body approved.
Mayor Pascual discussed the matters which transpired during the LMP National Directorate meeting and reminded everyone of the upcoming LMP General Assembly on March 17-19, 2014 at Manila Hotel. He reiterated the importance of said event since the mayors would have the opportunity to discourse with the Cabinet Secretaries and with the President himself, His Excellency Benigno Aquino III. It will be a very good venue for the Local chief Executives to raise their concerns in relation to their respective localities.
The LMP Cagayan Chapter by-laws was likewise deliberated upon and amended. Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Assistant Regional Director Ponciana Condoy attended the event to clarify the issues and concerns of the mayors regarding some of the programs being implementedby said department such as the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program and the National Household Targeting System (NHTS).
Mayor Trinidad opened the topic on the new policy of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) wherein the Economic Enterprise of the Local Government Units (LGUs) is now being taxed. She reiterated that the league should take a stand on this matter. Mayor Pascualproposed inviting the BIR Regional Director next meeting to enlighten them on said rule.
Sto. Niño Mayor Pagurayan, AV as he is fondly called, proposed the resolution endorsing Lasam-Sto. Niño road to be declared as a national road. It was approved. However, the process, according to Mayor Pascual will undergo a rigorous and long process.
Since the municipalities under district II are remotely located, the residents could not easily avail of the services of the Cagayan Valley Medical Center. Hence, the Secretary, Mayor Ramos proposed a resolution to be forwarded to Governor Alvaro Antonio to request the Batac General Hospital to cater all the residents of district II.
Before the adjournment of the meeting, there was a proposal to impose penalties to members who are late (P 5,000.00) and to those are absent during meetings (P 10,000.00). The body also agreed upon the publication of the unpaid dues of the members at their Official Gazette.
The next meeting is set on September to be hosted by Mayor Jesus Emmanuel Vargas of the Municipality of Abulug.
REBECCA D. BAUTISTA