By Mortz C. Ortigoza
LINGAYEN – A Pangasinan congressman lauded an official of a government department for showing him the list of projects and programs that her department would be implementing to the solon’s congressional district.
|Rep. Leopoldo Bataoil (center) after his interview with|
Pangasinan media men.
Rep. Leopoldo Bataoil (2nd District, Pangasinan) hailed Violeta Buenaventura, liaison of the Department of Labor & Employment (DOLE) in the first and second congressional districts of Pangasinan, for briefing him about the projects and activities to be implemented by the DOLE in his district for calendar year 2015.
“Ako ay humahanga sa kanilang mga initiatives dahil sa nakita ko sa listahan nila, na iyong mga kailangan na isulong na programa or kabuhayan ay nandoon na sa kanilang listahan”.
The gesture of Buenaventura impressed Bataoil especially after the Supreme Court nullified the pork barrel known as priority development assistance fund (PDAF) November last year.
Before the nullification, members of congress have been given leeway to identify projects and programs to be funded by their PDAF through a particular implementing agency or department.
“Basta ang importante, pondo na dating nakalaan sa congressman, senator ay nakapa-loob na sa mga implementing agencies. What are these implementing agencies? They are DPWH (Department of Public Works & Highway, DSWD (Department of Social Welfare & Development), CHED (Commission on Higher Education), DedEd (Department of Education), and DOLE,” he stressed.
Bataoil said the revocation of the pork barrel’s lump sum system where it was replaced by line item budgeting of every project, as shown by Buenaventura, before Congress approves it bode well for the solons since they can still recommend to the implementing agency or department the best project or program for their district.
As a result of Buenaventura’s gesture, Bataoil recommended to the DOLE his mushroom culture, organic and vegetable farming projects to be implemented by the department in different towns in the 2nd congressional district.
Because of the sudden spiked of the budget of government offices like the DOLE after the high tribunal revoked the pork barrel, Bataoil said these offices need the input and suggestions of the solons what are those best projects needed by their constituents.
Bataoil said that even members of congress are now relegated strictly to passing and amending of laws and passing the general appropriation acts (GAA), these agencies and departments are open to their suggestions.