January 30, 2023

The city council passed in its recent session the ordinance increasing the cash benefits or honorarium of senior citizens for the services they rendered to the city government of Baguio.
From the P30 rate per hour based on an ordinance passed in 2011, this has been increased to P40 per hour.
To be entitled to the honorarium, the senior citizen should have rendered services to the community which shall consist of, but not limited to: a. Tutorial and/or consultancy services; b. Actual teaching and demonstration of hobbies and income generating skills; c. Lectures on specialized fields like health, environmental protection, and the like; d. The transfer of new skills acquired by virtue of their training mentioned in Section 4, paragraph (d) of Republic Act 7432 or the Senior Citizens Act; e. Undertaking other appropriate services as determined by the Office of Senior Citizen Affairs (OSCA) such as school and blue lane traffic guide, tourist aid, pre-school assistant, senior citizen center personnel/staff, etc.
The OSCA is tasked to award or grant said benefits to be taken from special accounts for honorarium of senior citizens under the regular budget of the City Social Welfare and Development Office.
Senior citizens who have been compensated by private companies and institutions shall no longer be entitled to the incentives.
The council also passed Resolution 15, approving the gender and development plan of Baguio for 2021.
The plan focuses on gender mainstreaming or a strategy for making the concern of women and men as well as their experiences an integral dimension of the design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of policies, programs and projects in all social, political, civil, and economic spheres so that women and men benefit equally.
In line with the plan, government offices and departments were requested to appoint their gender and development focal point officers.
Through Resolution 26, s. 2021, the Department of Health and the City Health Services Office were asked to lead in the Covid-19 vaccine education campaign.
A supplement budget is being worked out to meet the financial demand for the procurement of anti-Covid-19 vaccines.
Mayor Benjamin Magalong was authorized in Resolution 20 s. 2021 to sign a memorandum of agreement for the outsourcing and setting up of a Covid-19 laboratory at the Baguio City community isolation unit at no cost to the city. All laboratory charges would be paid from PhilHealth reimbursements.
A laboratory could help address the current time-consuming process of testing of asymptomatic and mild Covid-19 clients prior to their admission to hospitals. It shall decrease the waiting time of patients for admission and eliminate the risk of exposing and spreading the virus from the specimens due to the current procedure of transporting specimens from hospital to the temporary treatment and monitoring facilities.
The mayor was also authorized through Resolution 11, s. 2021 to sign a deed of usufruct with the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, represented by Regional Director J/Senior Superintendent Roland Lee Ng Cael for the use of a 3,750-square-meter-city lot as new site of a city jail.
Upon completion of the new city jail, BJMP shall cede the existing Baguio City jail, including all the improvements thereon, to the city government.
The council also commended Lt/Col. Ricardo Gary Balangue Garcia III, Philippine Army, for topping the graduation of the Command and General Staff Course Class 67 – a training to prepare senior military officers for higher command and staff responsibilities.
Garcia of Barangay Liwanag-Loakan finished his primary education at the Loakan Elementary School in 1991 and his secondary education at the Baguio City National High School (Science Class) in 1995. He was admitted in the Philippine Military Academy in 1996 and graduated as the Cadet Brigade Commander of Sanghaya Class 2000.
With an average grade of 94.9208, Garcia topped the 136 student officers from the AFP and international military students from foreign armed forces who trained for nine months from March 2 until their graduation last Dec. 16, 2020 held at Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo, Quezon City.
He received the Kampilan Award, the Philippine Army Award, Best Commandant’s Paper Award, and a medal for graduating with a grade not lower than 88 percent.
The council also sent the city’s message of condolences to the Magalong family for the loss of their beloved patriarch the late Engr. Severiano S. Magalong Sr. who died last Jan. 9 in the U.S.A.
In separate resolutions, the council also expressed condolences to the families of the late former kagawad Rodrigo R. Tamo of South Central Aurora Hill; former kagawad Agustina M. Baucas of Sto. Tomas Proper; kagawad Godfrey N. Decaleng of Padre Zamora; and kagawad Cesar Egsaen Tade of Ambiong.