By By Fernan A. Gianan
The province is in good hands
posted 27-Jan-2019  ·  
819 views  ·   0 comments  ·  

Many thanks to those who greeted me on my birthday last Monday, Jan. 21, 2019, either through social media, email, text or personally.

Among them were my classmates at the Catanduanes College high school batch 1979, my classmates at Mapua Institute of Technology, former colleagues at the municipal government of Virac, fellow members of the local media, Gov. Joseph Cua and Mayor Peter Cua, close friends, Tribune people led by Efren Sorra, my 90-year old mother Zune and my brothers, my wife’s family and, of course, my only one Millie and sons Cris Eugene, Fred Benedict and Erwin James.

I especially appreciated the presence of my good friend, Fredeswindo “Freddie Boy” Alcala Jr., who has made the occasion a special day on his calendar, making the journey to Virac in the last few years. He is celebrating his 56th birthday today, Jan. 23, just a day after our fellow amigo, US-based architect Remund Abundo, marked his natal day on Jan. 22.

Emon;s invitation for the three of us to attend the Monterey Jazz Festival in California in September is still in the cards, but this depends on the Court of Appeals ruling favorably on my appeal in the libel case filed by Sunwest Water & Electric Co.

*****

The provincial government is in good hands despite the six-month suspension slapped on Gov, Joseph Cua by the Ombudsman in what is obviously a politically-motivated case.

Acting Governor Shirley Abundo has been exposed to the workings of the capitol for over a decade now and is not expected to stumble around in running the executive department. She is probably among the few politicians in the capitol who is not tied down by party politics and is genuinely concerned with keeping the bureaucracy humming for the benefit of the public.

On the other hand, the acting vice governor, PBM Rafael Zuniega, is an old hand at the legislative branch and certainly knows how to deal with snags and stalemates that usually occur at the Sangguniang Panlalawigan particularly during the campaign. His astute handling of the board matters will augur well for his reelection in the May 2019 elections.

*****

Just last Dec. 27, 2018, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) issued a guideline on the Reengineering of LGU Systems and Procedures in Compliance to the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018.

Among the reforms being pushed in the new guidelines, which would be discussed more extensively in a Tribune article next week, is the provision that barangay clearances and permits related to doing business shall be applied, issued and collected at the city/municipality, with the share in the collections to be remitted to the barangays.

What would barangays say about this seeming removal of their right to monitor the kind of business to be put up in their jurisdiction?

Since it would be the municipality which will issue the permit, would the official consult the barangay chairman or council before making the final decision to approve or disapprove the application?

    How much would be the cost of the barangay clearance or permit fee? Would it be uniform for cities and municipalities? Or would it depend on the need for revenues of each LGU?

    How much would be the share of the barangays, since it would be the municipal personnel would be doing the work? Would the barangays take kindly to the reduction of their income from the clearance fees?

    These questions beg to be answered by the DILG.

*****

AIRPLANE TROUBLE. The plane of White Knuckle Airways was taxiing down the tarmac for take-off, when it suddenly stopped, turned around and returned to the gate.

After an hour and a quarter, it finally took off.

A worried passenger asked the flight attendant, “What was the problem?”

“The pilot was bothered by a noise he heard in the engine,” explained the flight attendant, “and it took us a while to find a new pilot.”


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