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Council allocates P330K fund for Pasko sa Sugbo

By: Jose Santino S. Bunachita December 01,2014 - 12:17 AM

Can Cebu City Hall use a portion of the P9.2 million budget item vetoed by Mayor Michael Rama for the city’s annual Pasko sa Sugbo event to be held today at the Fuente Osmeña Circle?

Apparently they can after the City Council approved a resolution to charge P330,000 under the city-sponsored activities in the Supplemental Budget 2 for the event.

In last Wednesday’s City Council session, Councilor Phillip Zafra proposed to charge P330,000 under the city-sponsored activities in the SB2 for the opening of the annual Pasko sa Sugbo.

But Councilor Margot Osmeña, who chairs the budget and finance committee, questioned charging the amount to the city-sponsored activities account since this was one of two items earlier vetoed by Mayor Rama.

She said a copy of the SB2 and the mayor’s veto message were already sent to the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) which had yet to declare if the budget ordinance is operative or not.

Certificate of availability

The council called on City Accountant Mark Salomon and City Treasurer Diwa Cuevas who already gave a certificate of availability of funds for the program.

Salomon told the council that the city government can still use the funds.

“Based on what I read, only the condition for the use of the city-sponsored activities funds was vetoed. Considering this, it will not affect the amount which was appropriated by the council,” Salomon said.

In the P243 million SB2 approved last September, the council allocated P9.78 million for the city-sponsored activities. They specified what activities can be charged to the amount.

These include P4 million to be divided among the city’s 80 barangays at P50,000 each, subject to the submission of a project proposal to the council; P650,000 for Oplan Kalag-Kalag; P400,000 for Operation Misa de Gallo; P112,000 for the sports tournament of barangay Babag and P3.3 million for items listed in Annex I. Another P1.3 million can only be used for activities subject to the council’s approval.


This didn’t sit well with the mayor who vetoed the item. Rama said the identification and implementation of budget items “is the sole responsibility and accountability of the executive department.”

Salomon said based on law, there is presumption of regularity to activities charged under the account during the interim period that the DBM hasn’t issued an opinion yet.

“Since the supplemental budget is a law, it’s progressive. If it is declared null and void, it will have prospective effects, it won’t have a retroactive effect,” Salomon said.


He also suggested that the matter be referred to the City Legal Office for comment first.

But since the event is scheduled today, the council resorted to  approving the resolution.

The Pasko sa Sugbo is held every December wherein there will be free shows and attraction at the Fuente Osmeña Circle.

It is spearheaded by the mayor’s office through the Cebu City Youth and Development Commission.

Based on the proposed budget submitted by program director Erwin dela Cerna, the amount will be used for honorarium of performers and talents (P50,000), newspaper publication (P15,000), fireworks for the launching ceremony (P100,000), packed meals for 400 performers at P100 each (P40,000) and dinner buffet during the grand launching for 500 persons at P250 each (P125,000).


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TAGS: budget, Cebu City, Cebu Daily News, Christmas, December, Supplemental Budget

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