Mayor Cortes takes pride in Mandaue’s rapid growth

By: Anie M. Paujana, Peter L. Romanillos August 29,2014 - 08:12 AM

WITH his third and final term nearing an end, Mayor Jonas Cortes said his administration has eased Mandaue City’s biggest urban woes with new drainage lines, rehabilitated roads and a 24/7 command center to respond to traffic, fires and flooding.

In his State of the City Address (SOCA) on Wednesday, Cortes announced that Mandaue has refined its vision for the city. Instead of aiming to become a premier business destination, the city will strive to be a primary source of top-quality goods.

“By 2020, Mandaue city will be the primary source of high-quality manufactured consumer produccts,” he said, making the city competitive with neighbors in Southeast Asia.

Cortes delivered his 40-minute address at the Hall of Fame of Mandaue City Hall before city councilors, department heads and private sector representatives.

In line with his campaign promise to make Mandaue an “island of good governance”, Cortes said he adopted a Performance Governance System that involved reorienting each department and office to work with high standards to carry out his 14-point agenda.

Project teams led these initiatives which include the Mandaue expo business, infrastrcuture, the Bantay Mandaue Command Center, road expansion and improvement, industrial waste management, public-private partnerships.

The mayor said he endorsed to the City Council amendments in the Revenue Code, as well as the new Investment Code and the revised Comprehensive Land Use Plan.

He said the new proposed Revenue Code will update the city’s tax rates and lead to the gradual increase of the city’s revenue collections.

In just a year, he said, 1,740 new businesses have opened in the city “boosting our already bustling economy.”

The new investment is equivalent to P4.1 billion in direct capital into the local economy. With this, Cortes said the city is close to hitting the P2 billion mark in income for the year.

“Hand in hand with the city’s economic growth is the consequential congestion in traffic, dilapidation of roads and rapid increase of population due to migration of workers who want to live closer to their sources of income. These are the challenges that a city undergoing transformative growth must change,” the mayor said.

A total of 2.3 kilometers of drainage lines were installed to reduce flooding. By September, about four kilometers of drainage lines will be finished.

The city finished concreting 2.8 kilometers of “durable roads” from August 2013 up to the present.

Instead of asphalting dilapidated roads, Cortes said the city has implemented road concreting which meet “international standards”, spending P150 million for both road concreting and drainage projects.

For disaster preparedness, Cortes mentioned the Bantay Mandaue Command Center which operates 24/7, with or without power supply.

Two substations, he said, were established in the northern and southern portions of the city and can respond to “medical, fire and police emergencies close to home.”

The command center integrates control of traffic lights in nine of the city’s major intersections through a fiber-optic cable network.

“Eighteen kilometers of fiber-optics crisscross our city roads to give us real time access and control of the traffic situation all over our intersections,” he said.

Since August 2013, eight fires have dispalced 4,529 families or 20,889 persons, he reported.

At least P4.7 million in financial aid was given through hot meals, relief goods and items to the fire victims.

Mandaue also beefed up its disaster preparedness with each barangay having 100 fully trained disaster brigade volunteers to lead the way in disaster response, emergency first-aid, firefighting, communications resource delivery and crowd control.

Cortes said Mandaue city bounced back well from last year’s 7.2-magnitude earthquake by rebuilding 106 of the 134 damaged classrooms in less than six months.

Some P1.2 million was provided as financial assistance to 191 affected families of the earthquake while the city also extended help to heavily-damaged north Cebu towns.

Cortes also highlighted the city’s partnership with the private sectors saying it has been the most reliable asset and helped the city to multiply its resources. A total 103 classrooms were built in partnership with the pivate sectors including Aboitiz Foundation, Security Bank, VECO, AGAPP and Jollibee.

Related Stories:

Cortes is Metro Cebu’s wealthiest mayor

Rama to deliver SOCA in session hall


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TAGS: Cebu province, economy, Mandaue City, rapid growth, SOCA, VECO

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