No job order workers hired pending budget approval

·2 min read

THE Lapu-Lapu City Government will not hire new job order (JO) employees pending the approval of its annual budget for the year 2022.

Mayor Junard “Ahong” Chan told SunStar Cebu on Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022, the City is running under a reenacted budget which prevents it from hiring new employees or initiating new projects.

Chan alleged that the opposition-dominated City Council is purposely delaying the budget’s approval to hamper the services of his administration, especially since the May 2022 election is fast approaching.

“I was already informed last September 2021 by the chairman of the City Council’s Finance Committee that they will not approve the 2022 budget,” Chan said in Cebuano.

In a separate interview, City Councilor Michael Dignos said since the City is under a reenacted budget, there will be no appropriation for the employment of JOs.

“The premise of a reenacted budget is that you cannot spend funds that are not considered essential operating expenses,” said Dignos.

The contracts of these employees ended on the last day of 2021.

Dignos said after nine attempts to invite department heads to deliberate on the 2022 Annual Investment Plan (AIP), some attended deliberations for the first time only during a session last Jan. 13.

“There are some department heads who are willing to attend, but they were prohibited by the mayor,” said Dignos.

Chan belied Dignos’ allegation, saying it was the City Council that caused the delay since they did not attend the crafting of the AIP.

“AIP pa gani wala na ma aprobahi. Unsa na lang kaha inig discussion sa annual budget (Even the AIP has not been approved. What more for discussions on the annual budget?)” said Chan.

Dignos said of the total proposed budget for 2022 amounting to P3.2 billion, the Office of the Mayor will get the biggest chunk at P1.6 billion.

Chan said he will source additional funds from the National Government to augment the insufficient funds.

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