by Mortz C. Ortigoza
MANGALDAN- The mayor of this first class town lauded former Speaker Joe de Venecia and spouse Congresswoman Gina for the countless programs and projects they have given here.
They are the P20 million intended for the construction of the public market worth P100 million, the unspecified motorized water pumps, and 110 thousand bangus (milk fish) fingerlings they distributed here recently.
“Ang pag-mamahal namin sa kanya ay parehong pagmamahal namin kay Joe de Venecia. Huwag nating kalilimutan iyung mag-asawang ito. Kung wala ito, ang 4th District will not be progressive what it is now. Kaya mas maasahan natin si Speaker at Manay Gina. Biro niyo nabasa ko dito (BizNews Asia) hindi lang sa Pilipinas pero hangang buong daigdig that our Speaker is recognized as the best statesman and peacemaker,” Mayor Romero emphatically declared in a meeting recently at the residence of the de Venecia’s in Dagupan City that was attended by fellow mayors and supporters of the 4th District.
Mayor Romero told this paper recently that P60 million of the P100 million intended for the construction of the swanky modern two-story public market would be sourced in a loan with the Land Bank of the Philippines.
“The loan is still being processed. The bank told us that we have a borrowing capacity of P200 million, but we only settle for P60 million,” he explained.
He said that aside from the P20 million Rep. de Venecia would be giving this March from her Priority Development Assistance Fund, this town would source the other P20 million from national entities.
He said the arrangement with the bank on the P60 million is based on a program building. It means the bank releases the money by tranches upon the length of works done.
Meanwhile, on the uncertainty of the entry of SM Prime Holding, Inc to put a mammoth mall in neighboring Dagupan City, Romero said that the lands at Brgy. Anolid here that borders with Dagupan are already commercial and do not need to be converted from agriculture to commercial.
He also said that incase SMPI choose to put its giant retail store here, it would not find any opposition at the Sanggunian Bayan for a resolution as most of the councilors there are his allies.
The uncertainty of an SM Mall in Dagupan City cropped up after her mayor Benjie S. Lim said that after SMPI makes the conversion of its 12-hectare property in Brgy. Tambac from agriculture to commercial with the Departments of Agrarian Reform and Environment & Natural Resources, it should also weather to win the majority votes of the members of the City Council in Dagupan that is led by Vice Mayor Belen Fernandez.
Fernandez, a mall czarina, who owns the chain of CSI Malls in Dagupan City and in Pangasinan is believed to fight tooth and nail with her majority allies in the Council against SM setting foot in the city.