Munti to implement cost-cutting measures to fund programs vs COVID-19

The local government of Muntinlupa is set to implement economic and austerity measures to continue funding its programs in curbing the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the city.

Muntinlupa Mayor Jaime Fresnedi signed City Ordinance No. 2020-105 providing cost-cutting measures and realignment of funds to augment budgetary requirements for COVID-19 response.

This measure follows the recommendation of the Local Finance Committee to reduce expenses and conserve necessary resources from the 2020 Annual Budget by channeling funds to programs and projects towards COVID-19 initiatives.

Under the local ordinance, overtime pay to employees is suspended while hazard pay in relation to COVID-19 would be covered only until May 15 for qualified personnel.

However, health workers and other essential personnel assigned at the City Health Office, Ospital ng Muntinlupa, City Veterinary Office and Muntinlupa Traffic Management Bureau would continue to receive their hazard pay.

Honoraria of personnel involved in Technical Working Groups and other committees are also suspended while allowances of officers and staff members of national government agencies would be reduced by 50 percent.

The local government of Muntinlupa is also set to impose a freeze on the hiring of new personnel except for front-liners in health, law enforcement, sanitation, social services and other essential departments.

Further, local and foreign travels for all officials and staff are prohibited while civic celebrations, cultural events, and the purchase of supplies not related to the city’s COVID-19 response are put on hold.

Muntinlupa City Hall employees will also no longer get rice allocation of one sack per employee which is given every December.

Budget Committee chairman Coun. Raul Corro said if the economy continues to worsen due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the cost-cutting measures of the local government will be sustained until next year or even longer than that.

“This is a test of the city government’s ability to spend funds wisely. Because we will not get the income we were expecting, we need to cut our expenses and allot enough for funds for our primary needs,” Corro said.

As of July 2, Muntinlupa City has 440 confirmed cases with 291 recoveries, 111 active cases, 38 reported deaths, 137 suspect cases, and 350 probable cases.

*Source: Public Information Office