Saturday, December 19, 2009

Nacionalistas block Binay aid package for Bangkal

by Rudy Brul

Original Story:

Mayoralty bet Councilor Jejomar Erwin Binay caught a glimpse of rough sailing ahead when a Nacionalista Party-dominated Makati City Council voted against a P4-million aid to a cash-strapped village.

At issue is the request of Chairman Fermin Eusebio of Bangkal village from the city hall of P4,735,341.84 to bankroll projects and the paychecks of employees.

He told the council in a session that because of the economic crisis, the collection was unable to meet the targeted annual revenue.

The proposed allocation was part of an ordinance to set aside P123.23 million to cover a loan for Bangkal and Pinagkaisahan villages, Phase II of the Makati Youth Home, San Isidro Community Complex, extension of the Comembo Elementary School, Phase II of Pio Del Pilar High School and Pembo Elementary School.

The appropriation would come largely from Makati’s Internal Revenue Allotment of P120 million. The amount represents the city’s share of national government revenues under the Local Government Code.

On the floor, councilors identified with the Nacionalista Party voted against Ordinance 2009-049 which was being pushed by those belonging to the Binay administration.

Those who dumped the loan package and infrastructure fund was led by Councilor Ernesto Aspillaga along with Maria Theresa De Lara, Virgilio Hilario, Henry Jacome, Salvador Pangilinan, Vincent Sese, Elias Tolentino Jr., Denisse Hechanova, and Romulo Peña Jr.

Putting up a good fight were Councilors Binay, Angelito Gatchalian, Luis Javier Jr., Monique Lagdameo, Arnold Magpantay, Armand Padilla and Tosca Puno-Ramos.

Councilors Israel Cruzado and Erlinda Gonzales were absent from the session.

Eusebio said he was at a loss why he was being singled out and yet the entire appropriation was shot down, stalling the completion of public school buildings.

“Nakikiusap po ako na sana ay alisin muna ang pulitika at tulungan po kami sa barangay Bangkal (I am pleading to do away with politicking and help Bangkal instead). Our barangay employees need their salaries,” he said.

The son of Mayor Jejomar Binay is the ordained UNO candidate in the political succession, while Tosca Puno-Ramos is the daughter of the younger Binay’s running mate, singer Rico J. Puno.

Lagdameo is the party’s congressional bet for the city’s First District running against Rep. Teodoro Locsin’s wife, Louie, while most of the councilors are up for re-election.

At the opposite pole is Aspillaga, NP congressional bet for the Second District against incumbent Rep. Abby Binay. His colleagues are expected to face up to the Binay phalange in the next council as they are up for re-election, too.

Original Story:

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