The League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP) has created the Committee on Devolution during its virtual Special General Assembly Friday, July 16, Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia, LCP national president, said Monday, July 19.
The assembly gathered 108 city mayors and representatives to promote the interests of cities in dialogs related to the full devolution of services from the national government to local government units (LGUs).
“We are navigating unchartered waters,” Leonardia said, adding, “We need to sit down with national government agencies to get a clear picture of what is to come, and we count on their support and assistance in addressing the concerns raised by cities regarding the transition (to full devolution of services).”
The five-person committee consists of LCP Vice President for Mindanao and Pagadian City Mayor Sammy Co, Representative for Region I and Vigan City Mayor Juan Carlo Medina, LCP PRO and Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez, Borongan City Mayor Jose Ivan Agda, and Mabalacat City Mayor Crisostomo Garbo, a LCP press statement said.
During the meeting, Department of Budget and Management OIC-Undersecretary Kim Robert De Leon and Department of the Interior and Local Government Director Anna Liza Bonagua provided a policy background on the transition through Executive Order 138 and the upcoming memorandum circular on local transition plans.
Meanwhile, Department of Social Welfare and Development Assistant Secretary Joseline Niwane and Department of Health Director Frances Rose Mamaril presented their respective department’s transition plans.
Most of the queries during the open forum focused on determining the beneficiaries for the Growth Equity Fund, personnel to be displaced during the transition, and the devolution plan of other agencies.
LCP advocates for more city beneficiaries on the growth equity fund, more autonomy on creating positions for transition, and a more reasonable transition timeline given the upcoming election, the press statement said.*