BAGUIO CITY – After a series of public hearing for the proposed codification, Vice-Mayor Edison Bilog and the councilors agreed on updating provisions of city ordinances authored since 1945.
The well-attended forum for all city council committees, done since November at the Pine View and Crown Legacy Hotels, ended Dec. 17 with public hearings on Social Services and Public Utilities; chaired by Councilors Betty Lourdes Tabanda and Joel Alangsab, respectively.
The social services meeting focused on public offices in the grassroot level, and services afforded them. Some obsolete provisions, with specific references are due for deletion, Bilog observed.
Housing provisions in the Baguio-La Trinidad-Itogon-Sablan-Tuba-Tublay (BLISTT) area was also discussed in the forum. Efforts are pushed to decentralize the city’s population through housing areas in the neighboring Benguet municipalities.
Matters such as blood donations, blood screening and health packages for barangay officials, person with disabilities (PWD) and senior citizens were looked into, as with Electrocardio/encephalogram as additional medical benefits in the Health Services Office (HSO).
City Social Welfare and Development Officer (CSWDO) Betty Fangasan explained that separate funding is allocated as to purpose; training, livelihood, 4 Ps, Youth, Senior Citizens, PWDs and others. Inquiries as to medical needs of special children were also clarified, as with free legal assistance from the Attorney’s Office and funeral expenses for the needy. Assessment for a certain income level and resources to determine indigency would be needed, it was known.
Financial; relief and rehabilitation assistance, from institutions; solicitations needing permits from the city, the CSWDO and DSWD regional offices were delved into. Fangasan clarified that barangay solicitations be limited to 24 hours, while others would need the CSWD and DSWD-Regional office and mayor’s permit. Nevertheless, Fangasan urged those needing solicitation permits to see them in their respective offices.
Councilor Betty Lourdes Tabanda proposed for the inclusion of a women’s section in the codified ordinances, with the Gender Equality and Development (GEAD) code.
During the afternoon assembly which tackled additional public utility matters, Benguet Electric Cooperative (BENECO) representatives clarified matters in the barangays. A 24-hour line is open for the public, as to electrical services, it was known. Representatives from the Baguio City Police Office, Traffic Management Bureau (BCPO-TMB) and Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) were also present.
For the transport sector, vehicle number with an additional odd-even coding scheme was suggested. This could help in unraveling traffic woes, drivers and operators of public vehicles offered. Increased penalties for violations were also suggested.
The implementation of the King of the Road ordinance, Clean Air Act, LTFRB rules and resolutions, Republic Acts (RA) and other references were also looked into.
The creation, composition and policies of the Transport and Traffic Management Committee (TTMC), needing members from the local government unit and non-government organizations would need council approval, it was agreed.
The TTMC would then look into provisions on parking, loading, unloading, terminals, signages, traffic experiments and all traffic and transport matters.
Representatives from the senior citizens and PWD sector also clamored for blue lanes for their use. Officials present agreed to look into their concerns./Julie G. Fianza