Gonzaga legislates jobs,Â low trike franchise, PPP
The Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP) has approved Kag. Agustinus Gonzagaâ€™s measure that produces jobs and is awaited to pass his two other proposals respectively reducing the tricycle franchise fees and providing the city its bible for development partnership.
The new Gonzaga ordinance creates the Public Employment Service Office (PESO) of the Tagbilaran City government with extension desks in its15 barangays for peopleâ€™s easy, direct access.
Presided over by Vice Mayor Jose Antonio Veloso, the city council is inclined to approve the councilorâ€™s proposed ordinance cutting by half the existing tricycle franchise fees in further response to the plight of the lowly transport sector.
Gonzagaâ€™s second vital legislation on extensive deliberation leading to its final approval sets the rules, including accountability mechanisms, governing the cityâ€™s public-private partnership (PPP) thrust.
Expert institutions said this alone is fated to be a local landmark legislation.
This is while the city,Â under the tandem of Mayor John Geesnell Yap II and Veloso is anticipating an upsurge of developments.
The PESO seeks to address unemployment and underemployment, focusing on such factors as the inability of the economy to generate enough jobs, labor market imperfections, and lack of information about labor market supply and demand.
Gonzaga said the measure assigns city-paid PESO desk officers in all barangays who serve as direct accesses to job opportunities and facilitators of placements.
At the same time, they get and keep data as a ready â€œdirectoryâ€ of local skilled workers and professional talents needed for local, domestic and overseas employment.
Data which are regularly updated are likewise important to the cityâ€™s socio-economic mapping, Gonzaga said.
Localizing the PESO down the barangay level is effectively pursuant to Republic Act 8759 or the PESO Act of 2009 and, thus, extends the reach of the assistance programs of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).
The city PESO and its barangay desks provide a venue where residents/job seekers can find various employment options and actually seek assistance they prefer.
They serve as a referral and information center for various services and programs of the DOLE and other agencies, including the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).
While giving city job applicants top priority and adequate information on local employment and labor market situation, they network with other PESOs in the region for job exchanges.
In specific, the city PESO and its barangay desks undertake job fairs, Special Program for the Employment of Students and Out-of-School Youths (SPESOS), Work Appreciation Program (WAP), livelihood and self-employment bazaars,Â and vocational and career guidance.
They also engage in government internship, Workers Hiring for Infrastructure Projects (WHIP), Tulong Alalay sa Taong May Kapansanan (TULAY), kasambahay program, and labor and management program of the DOLE and cityâ€™s Tripartite Industrial Peace Council (TIPC).
Other programs and services involve emergency employment, Discovering the World of Work (D-WOW), Labor Education for Graduating Students (LEGS), anti-illegal recruitment program, elimination of worst forms of child labor while strengthening the protectionÂ for working children, and Pwede Pa kami Program for aged 40 and above.
Gonzagaâ€™s proposed ordinance reducing the tricycle or motorcab franchise fees by half from the existing P12,000 to P6,000 for new applicants and P6,000 to P3,000 for renewal is currently deliberated with an added reward system.
The renewal fee can be even installed in three years, Gonzaga said.
Under the reward system, the drivers/operators who commit especially serious traffic or franchise law violations cannot avail of the lowered franchise fees.
As an example, Gonzaga, who is a lawyer, cited the violation of knowingly transporting illegal drugs or hot meats, or items which are evidences of a crime.
The reward system is also intended to impose discipline on abusive drivers while, of course, there are grave violations which constitute grounds for franchise revocation, Gonzaga said.
The measure is a â€œdouble-bladed swordâ€ as it grants privileges to the cityâ€™s most dominant transport sector, like the other marginalized sector that get the benefits or incentives they deserve, while ensuring the tricycle drivers to be law-abiding and courteous.
Further, Gonzaga said, the low franchise fees may enable some drivers to legally own the units they rent as he cited the practice of â€œunder-the-tableâ€ transfer of ownership to avoid high renewal fee.
Gonzaga said Kag. Nerio Zamora II, a lawyer like him, is set to formalize and submit the pertinent amendments to the proposed measure, which has been agreed in principle.
PPP DRAWS IN
Once enacted, the PPP ordinance is expected to encourage as many investors to different programs and projects like water treatment and sewerage facilities, quality health care systems and economic enterprises.
Gonzagaâ€™s proposal has undergone expert review with technical assistance under the Strengthening Urban Resilience for Growth and Equity (SURGE) project, which is supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
The cityâ€™s most recent partnership involved its entry to the now Panglao Island and Tagbilaran City Executive Committee (PITCEC), which is led by the provincial government under Gov. Edgar Chatto.
The PITCEC is in anticipation of the upsurge of developments attributed to the operation of the Panglao airport, which is set for completion by December of 2017 that will irresistibly impact on the growth of Tagbilaran City.
Gonzaga cited the cityâ€™s third new growth area involving the barangays of Tiptip, Cabawan and Manga and the waterfront development plan for coastal areas particularly facing Panglao island.
He said the PPP ordinance sets the â€œgood rules of the game and ensures transparency as it adheres to the principle of subsidiarity because we are the agency closer to the people in assessing and addressing their concernsâ€
The PPP ordinance will give the city a chance to get in expert technical people of truly great uses, Gonzaga said.
The PPP Center of the Philippines has commended Gonzagaâ€™s pro-active, visionary legislation, validating what others say about him as a thinking councilor.Â (Ven rebo Arigo)