City Hall gas running low

Posted on November 6, 2012

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Cebu City government vehicles line to gas up in the fuel depository in the SRP. Delays in the approval of the supplemental budget 2 has been blamed for the facility’s depleted supply. (TONEE DESPOJO)

Cebu City’s gasoline depot supply may run dry by the weekend.

Mayor Michael Rama is asking the Cebu City Council to speed up approval of Supplemental Budget 2 worth P267.7 million, which includes P30 million to buy gasoline and fuel.

City Hall’s Government Service Office (GSO) head Rolando Ardosa said the city’s 2012 fuel allocation was already consumed in the first week of September.

The GSO he said made emergency purchase of diesel worth P13 million, but this is also depleted and may only last for about five days.

Rama said that lack of fuel will surely impair City Hall operations.

Fuel price increases he said have also affected the city’s fuel budget.

The GSO requested for a P288 million budget for fuel in the 2012 executive budget but the council approved P100 million.

Ardosa said he asked for a bigger amount anticipating the purchase of new vehicles this year and fuel allocations for vehicles assigned in the barangays.

The city government appropriated P100 million this year for the purchase of barangay vehicles, most of which were assigned to the city’s 80 barangays.

Rama said it’s been four months since the SB 2 was submitted to the City Council which is dominated by the Bando Osmena Pundok Kauswagan (BO-PK).

The supplemental budget remains pending with the budget committee of Councilor Margot Osmeña, wife of BOPK leader and Cebu south district Rep. Tomas Osmeña.

Vice Mayor Joy Augustus Young said that Rama only has himself to blame for delays in the passage of SB 2.

“The approval of SB 2 is dependent on the submission of (supporting) documents. We can’t just approve it blindly,” said Young.

Young said the council wanted to check if there were funds to support SB2 especially with projections of a P1 billion shortage in the annual budget.

While the city operates on a P5.4 billion budget this year, the City Treasurer’s Office has so far collected only P4 billion, he said.

Scrutiny

Mayor Rama met with department heads yesterday to ask about the status of SB 2 and couldn’t understand why “too much scrutiny” by the council has lated four months.

“They (the council) deserve an award but not for having delivered services to the public but for banning the projects of the mayor’s office,” he said.

He said the documents demanded by the council were immaterial as the SB2 was reviewed by “competent people” like Councilor Jose Daluz III , the city treasurer and budget officers, ,and former councilor Jocelyn Pesquera, a Certified Public Accountant and a lawyer.

The City Council may take up SB2 again tomorrow during its regular session. /Doris C. Bongcac, Chief of Reporters

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