February 25, 2024

The city council has approved the annual budget for the fiscal year 2024 amounting to a total of P2,745,274,171.

The figure represents a 14 percent increase compared to the P2.424 billion in the 2023 appropriations.

The budget was submitted by the City Mayor’s Office on Sept. 15, 2023 and was thoroughly discussed in budget deliberations with Mayor Benjamin Magalong, department heads, and the members of the city council.

The breakdown of the budget reveals a diverse set of revenue sources, with internal sources contributing P1,196,787,000,00 (44 percent) and external sources accounting for P1,488,487,171.00 (54 percent).

The remaining two percent comes from the beginning balance of P60 million.

Internal sources consist of tax revenue – P760,810,000 (28 percent) and non-tax revenue – P435,977,000 (16 percent).

External sources are the city’s shares from the National Tax Allotment – P1,234,987,171 (45 percent), economic zones – P250M (nine percent), and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office – P3.5M (zero percent).

The approved budget is aligned with the principles of Republic Act 7160, requiring that local government funds shall be spent solely for public purposes. It covers various expenditures for the operation of the city government, with a focus on growth and development.

Incorporated as part of the ordinance are the budget documents which include details on sources of funds, uses of funds, programmed appropriation and obligation by object of expenditure for 2024, personnel schedule, mandate, vision/mission, major final output, performance indicators, and targets.

Under the ordinance, the city mayor and the vice mayor are authorized to “augment” any item in the approved annual budget for their respective offices from “savings” in other items within the same expense class of their respective appropriations.

In this context, “savings” refer to the money that is set aside for a particular project, program, or activity but is not used while “augmentation” means the act of adding more money to a budget for a specific item, project, activity, or purpose. – Jordan G. Habbiling