MAYOR ASSURES AMPLE FUNDS FOR DINAGYANG 2019
ILOILO City MAYOR Jose Espinosa III assured that the budget allocated for Dinagyang tribes will not be retained by the uncertain fate of the 2019 budget.
“It will be approved and there will be no problem in passing that. That is assured already,” Espinosa said during the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement on the Dinagyang celebration between the Iloilo City, the Iloilo Dinagyang Foundation Inc. (IDFI), and the Department of Education-Division of Iloilo City on Dec 21, 2018.
City Administrator Hernando Galvez also assured that the subsidy for the Dinagyang will never be affected by uncertainties hounding the 2019 budget.
Galvez also confirmed that they have already received the copy of the 2019 budget which was approved by the City Council last week.
Earlier, Espinosa said there is a possibility that he will veto the budget after seeking recommendations from financial managers and financial experts on the 2019 budget.
On Dec 12, 2018, the council approved the P2.318-billion budget for 2019 after deleting the P200,000 allocation for the Local Youth and Development Office (LYDO).
Councilor Plaridel Nava, appropriations committee chair, also introduced a new spending mechanism in the budget by splitting the expenditures into two tranches.
Under this new mechanism, the City Hall offices can only spend half of the budget in the first six months of 2019 while the remaining will be disbursed in the second half of the year.
“By dividing the expenses into the first and second six months, it will ensure that incumbent elective officials seeking re-election shall not abuse and misuse public funds allocated to each office to promote their self-serving political interests,” Nava explained.
Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) said the mayor can exercise his veto powers on the budget.
The SP may override the veto by two-thirds vote of all its members.
Meanwhile, Ramon Cua Locsin, IDFI president and Board of Trustees chairperson said they have already distributed the third batch of subsidies to the eight competing tribes for the Ati-ati dance competition of Dinagyang 2019.
Out of the P1.2-million subsidy per tribe, P900,000 has been released so far.
“We divided the distribution of subsidies into four tranches and we started releasing the budget since October pa. What’s left is the last batch of subsidies amounting to P300,000 each,” he said.
Locsin assured that the competing tribes would be receiving their final batch of subsidies in the first week of January 2019.