DAGUPAN CITY – This city will operate with a PHP1.075-billion budget in 2021, PHP15 million lower than this year’s budget, following its approval by the Sangguniang Panlungsod on Tuesday.
In an interview on Wednesday, Mayor Marc Brian Lim said the budget is a reflection of what the city hopes to accomplish next year, which is balancing the recovery from coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) and the stunted economic growth.
Lim said the budget is a “people-centered budget that reflects the collective vision of Dagupeños”.
“It is a product of a rigorous and conscientious process of research, evaluation, and analysis to arrive at sound and well-grounded assumptions, to help us craft a robust, comprehensive, purposive, and cost-effective fiscal plan,” he said.
Lim said the budget of the city focuses on healthcare interventions, flood mitigation programs, social welfare, sustainable livelihood, and education.
“The Dagupeños have endured a lot in the past few months and the road to recovery is a long and arduous one. This budget will enable us to face whatever comes our way next year,” he added.
Meanwhile, councilman Michael Fernandez, majority floor leader and chair of the Committee on Finance, Appropriations and Ways and Means, said the proposed budget submitted by the executive office was approved in its entirety.
“What we look into deeply was the 20-percent development fund because there will be a new government edifice that will be constructed in front of the city hall, together with the redevelopment of Tondaligan Park, the flood control of Dagupan City, which is a big problem of the city,” he said in a separate interview.
Fernandez said there were no amendments, no conditions, but just mere questions for clarifications.
“The city government, the Sangguniang Panlungsod, and the Local Finance Committee have substantially complied with all the budgeting rules and procedures given by the Department of Budget and Management and the Department of the Interior and Local Government,” Fernandez said.
The proposed 2021 budget was submitted by the executive on Oct. 14, 2020.
The city council presided by Vice Mayor Bryan Kua conducted marathon face-to-face sessions and budget hearings. (PNA)