BACOLOD City – The Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Negros Occidental approved on Dec 6, 2017 the P3.5-billion budget of the provincial government 2018.
Board Member Salvador Escalante, committee on appropriations chair, moved for the approval of the budget on third and final reading.
“We did not dwell on the amounts because based on the proposed 2018 budget, the MOEE (Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses) budgets of all offices were reduced by 23% to give way to the implementation of the Salary Standardization Law III,” Escalante said.
He added that there were recommendations like speeding up of the hiring process to fill up vacant positions, especially in the hospitals.
Escalante said the budget hearing was very fast because they did not dwell on finances.
“The MOOE (Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses) of the provincial government for 2018 has been reduced by 23 percent, which is equivalent to about P50 million,” Escalante said.
During the budget hearing, he admitted that some department heads asked the possibility of restoring their MOOE budgets. But he said it is up to the Office of the Governor to decide.
“There is a provision in the law that 75 percent of the budget should be used by October of the current year,” Escalante said.
“But some offices that failed to do so, which affects the performance of the province as a whole.”