Archive for June 1, 2011

Abrenica to Water District board members: Resign


By Virgilio Sar. Maganes

VILLASIS- Mayor Dita G. Abrenica asked the Board of Directors of Villasis Water District to file their courtesy resignation as a matter of “delicadeza” for loss of trust to the appointing officer.

Abrenica’s action stemmed from the alleged decision of the Board of Directors during its meeting last May 19 to discontinue furnishing the mayor copies of minutes of meetings and financial statements.

Akala ko kasama ko kayo sa Matuwid na Landas. Is it because you are hiding something?, Mayor Abrenica asked the Board in her letter to the director.

She added that the Villasis Water District is a government owned and controlled corporation (GOCC) and is publicly owned.

“Any consumer for that matter has the right to all information with regards to the operation of the Water District, much more, to the local chief executive who looks after the general welfare of her constituents,” she said in her letter.

Requested to file their courtesy resignations are David Obedoza (Education Sector), Gloria T. Padilla (Civic Sector) Ma. Lolita L. Sison (Women Sector) and Cynthia R. Dela Cruz ( Business Sector). Lawyer Joseph L. Limos, Chair of the Board, was spared from the call to resign.

In an interview with Abrenica by Northern Watch, she said it was the responsibility of the of the local government unit to monitor the activities of the Villasis Water District, but not to interfere or intervene in their management and operations.

“It is the interest of the consuming public that we have to protect. Besides, the members of the Board of Directors were all appointed by the municipal mayor,” she said.

Abrenica further said that her action was devoid of politics and not personal in nature.

“I feel sad of this action as the members of the Board are all my friends. But I have to take action for the interest of our people,” she said.

The operations of the Villasis Water District has been in bad light recently due to “anomalous transactions” resulting from the alleged tampering of the results of the bacteriological examination and analysis conducted by the Dagupan City Water District’s Laboratory, an accredited facility of the Department of Health (DOH) and the presence of “missing funds” amounting to more or less P1.2 million purportedly from the non-remittance of collections.

The tampering was denied by General Manager Lydio Raguindin in an earlier interview which appeared in May 15 issue of this paper but acknowledged the non-remittance of collections by the collectors of the Water District.

Obedoza said the call for the members of the Board of Directors was “lamentable” but he was “willing to resign”.

“I did not lose my trust to Mayor Abrenica. I was appointed as member of the Board and I thank them (former Mayor Nonato Abrenica and Mayor Dita Abrenica) for that. What happened in the May 19 meeting was not a deliberate action of the Board. There was a representative from LWUA (Local Water and Utilities Administration) who gave his opinion that the minutes of meetings could not be furnished to the municipal mayor except the financial statements of the Water District,” Obedoza said.

He further said that there was indeed a missing fund in the Water District’s operations in the amount of P1.2 million but the P400,000 was already returned by the erring employees.

Obedoza further revealed that the problems in the operations of the Water District cropped up when they were still issuing receipts manually. When they were already using electronic meter reader, arrears of the consumers did not appear in the receipts. They included the arrears in the electronic meter reader in their succeeding issuances of receipts. That was when consumers began to complain about their payments.

“As members of the Board, we’ve been looking into the interest of the public. We have yet to receive also the final report of the Commission on Audit to make further decisions on the erring employees. The cashier was already suspended for three months,” he said.

The Northern is still trying to get the reactions of Padilla, Sison and Dela Cruz on the call for their resignation.

The members of the Board of Directors of the Villasis Water District were appointed by the municipal mayor and confirmed by LWUA. Each member has six years tenure in office. The Board is the policy making body of the Water District.

June 1, 2011 at 9:26 pm Leave a comment

Urdaneta did not scrap seeds subsidy – Bobom


By Virgilio Sar. Maganes

URDANETA CITY- The city government has not stopped the palay and vegetable seeds subsidy for farmers as farmers’ welfare is a paramount concern of the city government,

City Mayor Amadeo Gregorio “Bobom” Perez III, said.

Perez was reacting to a news article that appeared in a weekly tabloid circulating in the city (not the Northern Watch) that the “seed subsidy counterpart “of the city government was scrapped.”

“What was stopped was the palay seed subsidy of the national government under the Department of Agriculture. With the coming in of new administration under President (Benigno) Aquino, the palay seed subsidy which was the program of then President Arroyo was stopped. That is the new policy of the national government,” Mayor Perez said.

He said the city government is in total support of the farmers in the city and that there’s no truth to the allegations that the city government was not doing its counterpart in the food security program.

“Our programs on agriculture are continuing. We are aware that with the present economic crisis brought about by the increase of prices of oil products in the market, farmers are hard up in their farming operations. But we are sustaining our assistance to them,” he further said.

Perez also said that with the creation of 16 new cities in the country, the city will be affected with P17 million decrease in its internal revenue allotment (IRA). However, the League of Cities of the Philippines has filed a motion of reconsideration to the Supreme Court to reverse its early rulings and decisions.

“We are prepared for that eventuality. We will streamline the bureaucracy by not hiring and rehiring casual employees,” Mayor Perez further said.

City Agriculture Officer Bonifacio Parinas , in a separate interview, said that his office is continuously implementing the agricultural programs of the city government.

He said that by June to July which are the months of wet cropping season, an inbred palay subsidy will be provided for to the farmers.

“I have recommended two schemes to Mayor Perez. One is for a full palay seed subsidy and the other is 50-50 scheme in which the farmers will shoulder 50% of the cost of the palay seed. We will adopt a scheme that will benefit more farmers in the city. Farmers will be clustered to maximize the palay seed subsidy,” Parinas said.

A bag of inbred palay seed costs P1,200 (RC-122 and RC 160) and available from the palay seed growers in the 27 barangays of the city.

Parinas further said that vegetable seeds are still being distributed to the city’s constituents to support the Gulayan sa Barangay- Tulungan sa Purok Project.

The Project has been continuously implemented in the city for the production of vegetables, both for commercial and home consumption.

Meanwhile, former 5th District Rep. Mark O. Cojuangco met recently with the agricultural stakeholders of this city for the implementation of the “first radial gate in Urdaneta” located at Camanang Creek.

“This will be a pilot project to control the flow of water. It will be a sample in Camanang as it is small to operate and could easily be adopted. It will be replicated to other “Tanggal” in the future,” Cojuangco said.

The National Irrigation Administration is currently undertaking the study of the proposed project and also looking for its funding.

June 1, 2011 at 9:23 pm Leave a comment

Urdaneta did not scrap seeds subsidy – Bobom


By Virgilio Sar. Maganes

URDANETA CITY- The city government has not stopped the palay and vegetable seeds subsidy for farmers as farmers’ welfare is a paramount concern of the city government,

City Mayor Amadeo Gregorio “Bobom” Perez III, said.

Perez was reacting to a news article that appeared in a weekly tabloid circulating in the city (not the Northern Watch) that the “seed subsidy counterpart “of the city government was scrapped.”

“What was stopped was the palay seed subsidy of the national government under the Department of Agriculture. With the coming in of new administration under President (Benigno) Aquino, the palay seed subsidy which was the program of then President Arroyo was stopped. That is the new policy of the national government,” Mayor Perez said.

He said the city government is in total support of the farmers in the city and that there’s no truth to the allegations that the city government was not doing its counterpart in the food security program.

“Our programs on agriculture are continuing. We are aware that with the present economic crisis brought about by the increase of prices of oil products in the market, farmers are hard up in their farming operations. But we are sustaining our assistance to them,” he further said.

Perez also said that with the creation of 16 new cities in the country, the city will be affected with P17 million decrease in its internal revenue allotment (IRA). However, the League of Cities of the Philippines has filed a motion of reconsideration to the Supreme Court to reverse its early rulings and decisions.

“We are prepared for that eventuality. We will streamline the bureaucracy by not hiring and rehiring casual employees,” Mayor Perez further said.

City Agriculture Officer Bonifacio Parinas , in a separate interview, said that his office is continuously implementing the agricultural programs of the city government.

He said that by June to July which are the months of wet cropping season, an inbred palay subsidy will be provided for to the farmers.

“I have recommended two schemes to Mayor Perez. One is for a full palay seed subsidy and the other is 50-50 scheme in which the farmers will shoulder 50% of the cost of the palay seed. We will adopt a scheme that will benefit more farmers in the city. Farmers will be clustered to maximize the palay seed subsidy,” Parinas said.

A bag of inbred palay seed costs P1,200 (RC-122 and RC 160) and available from the palay seed growers in the 27 barangays of the city.

Parinas further said that vegetable seeds are still being distributed to the city’s constituents to support the Gulayan sa Barangay- Tulungan sa Purok Project.

The Project has been continuously implemented in the city for the production of vegetables, both for commercial and home consumption.

Meanwhile, former 5th District Rep. Mark O. Cojuangco met recently with the agricultural stakeholders of this city for the implementation of the “first radial gate in Urdaneta” located at Camanang Creek.

“This will be a pilot project to control the flow of water. It will be a sample in Camanang as it is small to operate and could easily be adopted. It will be replicated to other “Tanggal” in the future,” Cojuangco said.

The National Irrigation Administration is currently undertaking the study of the proposed project and also looking for its funding.

June 1, 2011 at 8:38 pm Leave a comment


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