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Bacolod City, Philippines Thursday, August 1, 2013
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SP members get P35M pork

The four reelected board members of Negros Occidental as well as the three ex-oficio members, who had questioned and initially disapproved the 2013 budget, and the 20 Percent Development Fund during the May 13 election period, got equal shares of the Special Project Allocations, also known as “pork barrel”.

They shared it with Sangguniang Panlalawigan members who had pushed for and voted for the budget approval.

In a memorandum Vice Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson, said P24 million has been allocated for the 12 board members, and P1 million each for the three ex-oficio members, who represent the Philippine Councilor’s League, the Association of Barangay Captains and the Sangguniang Kabataan Federation.

The P27 million “pork barrel” for board members forms part of the P35 million SPA, that was contained in the 20 Percent Development Fund of the province.

Each of the 12 board members are expected to get P2 million as SPA.

During the election period, re-elected Board Members Patrick Lacson, Pedro Zayco, Helen Zafra, Renato Gustilo, and sectoral representatives, George Gitano of the Liga ng Barangay, Raul Rivera of PCL-Negros and Thea Mae Dino of the SK, had voted against the passage of the 2013 budget.

The P2.6 billion budget for this year that included the 20 percent Development Fund was approved by the SP, only after the May 13 election.

Vice Governor Lacson, who presided over the SP regular session, yesterday reminded the board members to strictly follow regulations and use of funds, apparently referring to their SPAs.

Lacson will get a share of P8 million from the P35 million SPA.

The SP also approved the request of Marañon for authority for him to sign a contract between the provincial government and the 428 Far Eastern Realty Corp. for the construction of six classrooms at the Negros Occidental High School compound in Bacolod City, worth P9,978,016.46.

The construction of additional classrooms for the NOHS was among the issues raised against Marañon during the election period. *GPB

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