New City Hall not limited to debt ceiling – Cee O

march 10-16, 2011

Tagum City Mayor Rey “Chiong Oy” Uy has clarified that the total cost which would complete the new City Hall is not pegged and limited to the ceiling set by the Bureau of Local Government Finance (BLGF) to the city government’s borrowing capacity.

The BLGF approved for year 2010 the city government’s new debt ceiling of P249 million from the previous P231 million.

The city mayor said that besides bank borrowing general funds would also come in to complete the project.
He said that limiting the total cost to the debt ceiling would render the structure of the new City Hall to be “not that big, not that beautiful”.

He lamented over the inaction “without clear reason” of the Development Bank of the Philippines to the city government’s loan application of P162 million resulting to a year of virtual stoppage of works for the new City Hall.

With the DBP’s inaction, early this year the city government shifted to borrowing with the Philippine National Bank (PNB).

City Hall sources said that DBP did not make disapproval but offered loan syndication, which did not sit well with the city government while there have been many loan offerings from various banks.

Meanwhile, the city council recently authorized Mayor Uy to contract a new loan of P162 million with the PNB. The expected loan would reach the total loans for the new City Hall to P617 million with the previous P450-million loan accessed over two years ago.

City Councilor De Carlo “Oyo” Uy said that the city government is “very much capable” to pay for the new loan sought even while part of the loan had been paid already with the continuing amortizations.
He added that the recent BLGF debt ceiling is “very conservative” and the loan sought coupled with general funds can manage to complete the new City Hall.

“With the general funds that would come in from time to time, the new City Hall would be completed within Mayor Uy’s term,” he said.

But the new City Hall looks palatial and awesome structure already as of now. Even as it is not yet complete it is being used already in various big activities hosted by the city. The most recent was the successful holding of the 3rd International Rondalla Festival.

Excursionist officials from local governments in various parts of the country have been coming to see and were awed by the huge City Hall with sprawling grounds. It is touted as the biggest and most modern city hall in the country.

Mayor Uy said it is conceived and designed to be multi-functional saying that for one the problem of venue where to hold mass gatherings, programs and performances is solved with the vast spaces, meeting and convention features of the 8-hectare new City Hall. (cha monforte)

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