THE Cebu City Government has lost around P100 million in market revenues since the start of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic at the end of March.
The closure of many stores and stalls in the public markets around the city has affected collection, said Mare Vae Reyes, officer-in-charge of the City Treasurer’s Office.
At the Carbon Public Market alone, there are only around 400 vendors. Before the health crisis, there were over 4,000.
Mayor Edgardo Labella had also ordered the closure of the market complex, the biggest in the city, once a week to give way for disinfection.
The City Government sources its income from business taxes, real property taxes and public markets.
SunStar Cebu tried to get the details on the City’s projected income from the markets, but to no avail.
City Councilor Raymond Alvin Garcia, chairman of the budget and finance committee, said with the expected shortfall of the City’s income this year, the City has to adjust expenditures.
With the exclusion of trainings and events in City Hall pursuant to the health protocol, Garcia said the City can adjust its expenses to align with its income.
The budget review of the City is still ongoing with nine commissions left for review, he said.
Garcia said the City has so far saved P395.6 million from the 27 departments in City Hall with the cancellation of some programs and events because of the Covid-19 crisis.
He said savings should reach P500 million once the budget review is completed. / JJL