City Budget Planning Issue

Planning for the 2009 Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP) budget will push through even as city executive officials will not participate in its deliberations.

City Vice Mayor Jose Antonio Veloso told the Chronicle that the 2009 SP budget programming and planning workshop will be rescheduled this week.

Earlier, City Mayor Dan Lim snubbed an invitation from the SP to attend the budget planning originally scheduled on Friday at the Bohol Beach Club .

Lim likewise informed SP secretary Mansueta Sale that city planning and development officer Eduardo Macalandag, city budget officer Rosemarie Palma and city local government operations officer Mardonio Roxas will not be attending the budget workshop.

According to Veloso, the members of the Sanggunian agreed to invite the mayor and the three city officials to be guided with the policy directions of the executive.

The vice mayor explained that it is not only the preparation of the budget that needs to be taken up but also formulating a legislative-executive agenda.

In his letter to the SP, Lim said he was "constrained not to honor the invitation in deference to the separation between the executive and legislative."

"The planning workshop is an internal matter that is best left for the (SP)," the mayor said. 
Lim added that his presence and officials of the executive department will "only disturb such deliberations." 

In the invitation, Sale requested the mayor to come during the opening program and deliver a short inspirational message. 

At the same time, Sale requested the presence of Macalandag, Palma and Roxas. 

Their presence was intended to "assist and guide [SP members] during the whole process." 
In his reply to the invitation, the mayor pointed out that some members of the SP "have repeatedly encroached into the performance of the functions and responsibilities of the executive department." 

"I will not allow any official or employee of the Executive Department to commit the same mistake," Lim stressed.