ITOGON, Benguet – The municipal government will be putting up a new municipal building within the municipal grounds to accommodate more offices of concerned government agencies and the local government and to address issues on accessibility among senior citizens and persons with disabilities.
Mayor Bernard S. Waclin stated that technical personnel of the local government are now finalizing the program of work and cost estimate of the proposed 4-storey new municipal building so that the funds for the project will be included in the annual budget of the municipality next year.
He disclosed that the proposed new municipal building will have an underground parking to accommodate the increasing number of government vehicles and those owned by people wanting to transact business with the various offices of the concerned government agencies and the local government that will be situated in the said structure.
Mayor Waclin claimed that the local government is awaiting the release of an initial P10 million from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) which will be used to jumpstart the implementation of the project while awaiting the availability of whatever local funds that will be earmarked in next year’s annual budget of the municipality.
Earlier, Rep. Eric Yap vowed to provide a counterpart fund to ensure the immediate completion of the local government’s priority project while assuring separate funding support for the rehabilitation and improvement of the municipal gymnasium.
The local chief executive said that he also wants to transfer the Mayor’s Office to the new municipal building once completed so that it will be accessible to the people wanting to transact business with the said office, especially senior citizens and persons with disabilities who are having difficulties going to the present site of his office.
According to him, the local government had been receiving complaints from senior citizens and persons with disabilities on their alleged difficulties in accessing his office that is why he made it sure that one of the priority projects of his administration is to put up the new municipal building that will be constructed within a suitable portion of the municipal property to address such concerns.
Waclin expressed his gratitude to Congressman Yap for his commitment to provide counterpart funds from the lawmaker’s initiatives to ensure the immediate completion of the proposed structure where the same will augment whatever available funds that will be allotted by the local government from the annual budget next year.
Itogon is one of the first-class municipalities in the province that rely on mining as a source of its income used to fund the enhanced delivery of basic services and implement priority development projects geared towards growth and development.
Moreover, the municipality has a land area of more or less 60,000 hectares and plays host to the operation of large-scale mining companies such as the Philex Mining Corporation, Benguet Corporation and Itogon Suyoc Resources, Inc. and power generation plants like the Binga Dam in Barangay Tinongdan.