February 9, 2023

The city council has approved Ordinance 77, s. 2022, which amends Ordinance 18, s. 2016 or the “Environment Code of the City of Baguio” to increase the fees to be collected from guests and tourists entering the Baguio Botanical Garden.
The ordinance stated expenses on the operation of the Baguio Botanical Garden since it was opened to the public after the height of the Covid-19 pandemic on March 6 has hugely increased because of the influx of tourists visiting the area on an average of about 100,000 visitors each month.
The total collections based on the amended P5 entrance fee for children and P10 for adults from March 7 to June 13 is only P4.940 million as against the expenses for personal services, maintenance and other operating expenses, capital outlay, and infrastructure projects of P62.4M.
The amendment assures a break-even income and expenses of the park for 2023, particularly of Section 31, paragraph Cof the city’s Environment Code to change the term “entrance fee” to “environmental fee” and set a reasonable amount to be collected for the beautification, upkeep, and maintenance of the park.
Under the ordinance, the new rate or environmental ee to be collected upon entrance to the Botanical Garden from: Tourists is P100 for adults and children who are 13 years old and above; P25 for children who are 12 years old and below; and 20 percent discount for senior citizens and persons with disabilities.
For Baguio City residents, upon presentation of proof of Baguio City residency, the entrance fee is P50 for adults; P25 for children and students who are 13 years old and above; free for children and students who are 12 years old and below; and P25 for senior citizens and PWDs.
All collections shall be deposited in a trust fund to be used for environmental programs and projects for the sustenance and improvement of city parks.
A copy of the ordinance was submitted to Mayor Benjamin Magalong.
The city council in Resolution 634, s. 2022 commended Saint Louis University for organizing and staging the lantern parade after a two-year hiatus.
It also conveyed the City of Baguio’s formal acknowledgement to the contributions of the SLU and recognition to the collective efforts of SLU President Rev. Fr. Gilbert Sales, CICM, the administrators, the faculty, and the students for continuously celebrating with the city and showcasing its talents and creativity.
The resolution stated that the annual parade of lanterns of the SLU community since its establishment and commencement in 2008 as an added opening event for the celebration of Christmas season in the city continuously serving as a wholesome public and family entertainment showcasing various lantern artworks of dazzling beauties and designs, energetic street dance talents, and synchronized field demonstrations created, choreographed, and performed by the faculty members and students themselves from elementary to post graduate units.
“Aside from being a catalyst to the beginning of Christmas merriment in the city, the parade also encourages creativity as well as sustainability by enjoining the use of recycled materials. Indeed, the showcased lanterns during this year’s parade were donated for their full use to the different barangays in the city and other communities.”
The SLU lantern parade not only reflects the creativity and splendor of the citybut also the valuable role and contributions of the educational institutions to the continued growth and development of the city, added the resolution.
In support to small livelihoods and the local newspaper publishers in the city, the body through Resolution 637, s. 2022 has requested the City Mayor’s Office to extend the validity of the agreement between the Permits and Licensing Division-City Mayor’s Office and the newspaper stand vendors and watch repair proprietors.
The extension was requested by Gloria Antoinette Hamada, publisher and chief operating officer of the Baguio Midland Courier and Peter Puzon of the Baguio Citizens’ Rights’ Advocacy Center/Citizen-Advocate newsletter during the citizen’s forum of the city council session.
The approved period is for six months from January 2023 to June 2023, or until such time that the City Planning and Development Office has come up with concrete plans and arrangements for a relocation site/s.
The resolution covers all newspaper stand vendors, watch repair proprietors, and other legal vendors or established vendors who are paying permits like peanuts, corn, and sunglasses vendors to be allowed to continue vend at their current locations until such time that concrete plans and arrangements for them to be accommodated in relocation areas are in-placed.
In Resolution 633, s. 2022, the city council requested public and private high schools in the city to conduct regular mental health awareness and anti-drug abuse campaigns.
The action was based on the resolution of the Scout Official for-a-Day during its session on Nov. 7 and from the proposal of Sofad councilor Ralph Gwyneth Sapdoy.
The resolution stressed for the urgent collaboration of all stakeholders or agencies such as the Baguio City Police Office, the City Social Welfare and Development Office, the Department of Health, the City Schools Division Office, and the Sangguniang Kabataan Federation-Baguio City, among others for the success of the program and for the welfare of everybody specially the vulnerable youth sector.