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Surigao City joins other cities vs IRA reduction

Surigao City (January 28) -- City Mayor Alfonso Casurra, has joined and supported the campaign of the League of Cities in the Philippines (LCP) to address the Internal Revenue Allotment cut for 2008, this he revealed in an interview recently.

Casurra, who is currently the LCP Executive Vice President, said the move was brought about by the conversion of some 18 municipalities to component cities across the country last year.

Out of 18 municipalites only 16 municipalites were questioned by the LCP that includes Baybay, Leyte; Tayabas, Quezon; Borongan, Eastern Samar; Bayugan, Agusand del Sur; Cabadbaran, Agusan del Norte; Bogo and Carcar, Cebu; Catbalogan, Samar; Tandag, Surigao del Sur; Lamitan, Basilan; El Salvador, Misamis Oriental; Mati, Davao Oriental; Batac, Ilocos Norte; and Tabuk, Kalinga.

The conversion of San Juan and Navotas were not questioned because according to Casurra they are very much qualified and they have met the necessary requirements.

The IRA cut according to Casurra was approximately 31 Million for Surigao City. Although he stressed that he is not against the conversion of the municipalities, "as long as they meet the minimum requirement."

For a municipality to graduate to cityhood, Casurra said it must have the following three minimum requirements, the P100 million in locally-generated funds with a 150,000 in population and 100 square kilometers in land area.

It maybe recalled that LCP filed a case last year before the Supreme Court questioning the conversion of some towns which the group claimed they did not meet the minimum income and population requirements as mandated by the Local Government Code.

Casurra also revealed that one of the moves of the LCP after their meeting with President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo last Tuesday was staging a nationwide protest action that is being scheduled on Monday, Jan. 28 during the flag raising ceremony and will be held simultaneous in the other 120 cities nationwide. Here in Surigao, all city government officials and employees will don a red arm band. (Fryan E. Abkilan, PIA-Surigao del Norte)


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