City officials endorsed the $60 million loan for the Baguio Resilient City Tourism Project to the National Economic Development Authority for possible fund sourcing, subject to the terms and conditions to be embodied in a memorandum of agreement to be signed between the local government and the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (Tieza).
Under Resolution 480, s. 2021, signed by Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong, the city council acknowledged the necessity and importance of the sanitation management component of the Baguio Resilient City Tourism Project, which comprises the bulk of the amount that will be loaned by the Tieza from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and will be repaid from 2031 to 2050.
The council said Baguio is the headwaters of the Sagudin-Balili-Bued, Asin-Gallano, and Albalanga, which far exceed the limits of water quality standards set by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources due to the alleged unabated discharge of untreated waste water endangering the health and safety of residents as well as those people in neighboring municipalities and downstream provinces.
Earlier, the city government wrote the DENR to extend the suspension of the implementation of Department Administrative Order Circular 2016-08 on the enforcement of the limitation of effluence on waste water but the same was denied.
As such, the city government will be penalized for continuously violating the water quality guidelines and general effluence standards.
The council said the Baguio Resiliency City Tourism Project, specifically on the sanitation management of the city, will assist the city government in ensuring that residents will have access to sanitation services, improved waterway and river systems, and promote the city’s environmental integrity.
The council adopted Resolution 502, s. 2019, endorsing the proposed upgrading and expansion of the sewerage system of the city project of the City Environment and Parks Management Office and the City Planning and Development Office for possible fund sourcing.
Under the proposed setup, Tieza will loan from the ADB and give the money to the city government, which will pay the amortization of the loan through the Tieza.
Part of the loan will be used to fund various activities related to the improvement of the local tourism industry, which will be among the components of the project that will seek to improve the current state of the city’s environment.
However, the loan will still be subject to the approval of the NEDA Investment Coordinating Council composed of a number of cabinet secretaries before it will be released for the completion of the required documents. – PIO release