City administrator Atty. Cesar J. Balmaceda disclosed that the major problem is the shortfall in finances.
“We still have the resources. However, from the P25-million per month Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) of the city government, P18 million goes to the salaries of our permanent employees. At this point in time, we can’t even afford to pay for contractual workers and in like manner, our traffic enforcers,” the city administrator explained.
Furthermore, the city government pays for its monthly electric consumption bill of P1 million.
The administrator also said another fiscal constraint is the gasoline consumption of the 11 serviceable garbage trucks.
“The city government is just lucky that the provincial government is providing us two more trucks to shore up our garbage collection in the meantime that we are in tight budget,” Balmaceda said.
“The city government pays up anywhere from P118,000 to half a million pesos in a month’s time,” he noted.
But, one step at a time, the new city administration is getting to the bottom of every concern. On the issue of garbage collection, Balmaceda said for the time being, the city’s traffic enforcers, street cleaners, and garbage collectors are doing this job.
He likewise divulged that the previous administration has P7 million in unpaid salaries for June 2013 of 2,000 contractual workers.
“We are at present trying to find means to pay these employees,” he said.
Balmaceda also said that the city government for the past six years never had the chance to achieve the prestigious Seal of Good Housekeeping (SGH).
During an initial dialogue with stakeholders, a new traffic scheme was taken up which acts on various grievances of drivers, commuters, and businesses along Sorsogon City’s main thoroughfares.
For more than a year now, tricycle operators and drivers, commuters, and business owners have been complaining about the one-way traffic scheme which the past administration had implemented specifically along the main thoroughfare – Rizal and Magsaysay Streets – hence, the suggestion to bring back the old two-way traffic scheme.
The city government will implement a new traffic scheme in August.
Earlier, Lee emphasized the need to re-establish the two-way traffic system, particularly along Sorsogon City’s main access roads under one of her Team Sally slogans “Bisay na Trapiko, Ginhawa kan Gabos!” (Orderly Traffic, Relief of All). (MAL/BAR-PIA5, Sorsogon)