BAGUIO CITY – The City Council requested the executive department to fastrack the renewal of all contracts for the long-term use of the city-owned Baguio Convention Center to legitimize the use of spaces in the premises of the government facility by various lessees.
The local legislative body came out with the said request after learning from the lessees that their contracts expired a long time ago and were reportedly never renewed and confirmed.
The council asserted the contracts to be entered into by the local government must be submitted to the legislative body within 30 days from their execution for confirmation pursuant to the previous Audit Observation Memorandum (AOM) mandating the confirmation of contracts for the use of the convention center and the provisions of the Local Government Code of the Philippines which also provides the confirmation of contracts entered into by the local government by the local legislative body.
Further, the concerned offices of the city government were also required to submit to the council the basis for the rentals for its information, ready reference, and further needed action.
Some of the tenants were found to have not paid their respective lease rentals for a period of nearly eight months because of the absence of valid contracts to mandate their respective companies to release the payment of their accumulated lease rentals while some companies had been paying their lease rentals even without their renewed contracts.
All of the tenants claimed they already sent written and verbal information to the concerned offices of the local government that they are willing to enter into renewed contracts to continue their businesses but there was no response from the said offices leaving them in a quandary whether or not their lease contracts had been renewed.
The representatives of the tenants who had been religiously paying their lease rentals claimed they directly paid their dues monthly to the City Treasury Office upon receiving the order of payment from the City Tourism Office while awaiting the renewal of their contracts that they have been constantly following up before the concerned offices of the local government.
The funds that are paid by the tenants are deposited in a trust fund for the maintenance and operating expenses for the city-owned facility.
The tenants are not aware when their contracts will be updated to guarantee their occupation of their spaces they are occupying in the facility.
The city purchased the convention center from the State-owned Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) for it to have its own convention facility.
By Dexter A. See