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Dumaguete City, PhilippinesFriday, July 22, 2011
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League of Cities devastated
over SC decision on cityhood

Mayor Karen Villanueva of Bais City, Negros Oriental, said the League of Cities is devastated by the second entry of judgment of the Supreme Court that went in favor of the 16 municipalities that were converted into cities. 

Villanueva said the league is strategizing on how it is going to move forward from this dilemma, not only for the cities, but for the people because this involves the decision of the highest court of the land.

Villanueva recalled that a final decision was already handed down in 2008, and amazingly it was revived, flip-flopped several times, until another final decision was reached.

She said it’s not a question of sharing with the newly converted cities, but on the credibility and respect for the high court that changed it decisions, not just once but twice in this particular issue.

The devastation may not be felt in the remaining months of 2011, but its effects have  started to worry the mayor, as she was informed about the reduced Internal Revenue Allotment by the Department of Budget and Management next year.

Villanueva said due to reduced collection in 2009, the IRA of Bais City was P18 million less, plus an estimated P26 million deduction due to the conversion of 16 municipalities into cities.

Being dependent heavily on the IRA as an hacienda-based local government unit, Bais may resort to retrenchment of job order employees, and holding in abeyance the third tranche of the mandated salary increases for 343 regular employees next year, not to mention its effects in the delivery of basic services, the mayor said.*JG




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