BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan wants the barangays to be financially independent once the city’s 128 barangays are merged to allow them to implement their desired development projects and enhance the delivery of basic services to the people without relying on concerned government agencies and the local government for assistance.
The local chief executive pointed out one of the advantage of the barangays being fiscally independent will be the grant of regular salaries for barangay officials and personnel will be hired to assist them in addressing the concerns of their barangays.
“We have to make sure that our barangays conform with the basic requirements enshrined under the provisions of the Local Government Code that will allow the barangay officials to implement their desired development projects and improve the basic services provided to their constituents,” Domogan stressed.
Aside from providing that the minimum constituents of a barangay is 5,000, the Local Government Code also stipulates that barangay captains could receive the salary equivalent to Salary Grade 12 while barangay kagawads could be granted a salary equivalent to Salary Grade 10.
He explained by merging the city’s barangays to a reasonable number, the resulting barangay councils could prescribe for the increase in their honoraria because there will be a significant increase in their Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) apart from their internally generated funds and the assistance being provided by the local government to the barangays.
According to him, there is a barangay in the city that exists with only 17 inhabitants while there is also a barangay that has over 30,000 inhabitants and the said barangays receive an equal funding support from the local government annually.
He added there has been a proposal in the previous Congress for the regularization of the compensation of barangay officials and the qualification of barangays but the same did not pass the deliberations due to debates on the land area of the barangays that will be subdivided in the different parts of the country.
By merging the city’s barangays, the mayor asserted that the number of barangays will be able to comply with the prescribed limitations provided in the Local Government Code and that there will be a significant increase in their IRA providing barangay officials the opportunity to implement high impact development projects in their areas of jurisdiction.
Further, the merged barangays can also equally divide the assistance provided by the city government in its annual budget giving more funds for the implementation of programmed projects and more importantly provide more basic services to their constituents.
The City Mayor admitted that the regularization of the compensation of barangay officials will mean full time service of officials to their barangays unlike in the present set up where a number of barangay officials have other employments to augment their meagre honorarium.
By Dexter A. See