ILOILO – Provincial capitol employees wore black shirts yesterday to lament the Sangguniang Panlalawigan’s dawdling on the provincial government’s 2019 P3,712,252,733 budget.
The budget included the fourth and final tranche of the 2015 salary standardization (increase) for capitol employees.
According to Atty. Teofisto Melliza, attorney III at the Provincial Legal Office, over 2,000 regular and casual (plantilla) employees were looking forward to receiving their salary increase.
“Sini lang gin-implement naman ang excise tax. Sobra ina P2 nga saka sa gasoline. Ti, ang epekto sina sa mga balaklon, sa plete kag sa tanan tama ka daku,” said Melliza.
The wearing of black shirts yesterday was not instigated by anyone but voluntary on the part of the employees, he clarified.
Jezza Nepomoceno, executive assistant II at the Office of the Governor, said the wearing of black shirts was not a protest but a plea to the Provincial Board to hasten the budget deliberation as the employees’ salary increase was important.
“For example may P500 salary increase. So, sa tatlo ka bulan halin January to March that is P1,500. Isa na ina ka saku nga bugas, pila na ina ang makakaon,” said Nepomoceno.
The proposed 2019 provincial government budget remains stuck in the SP’s Committee on Appropriations chaired by Liga ng mga Barangay president Dorothy Paes. Last December, she said she was busy with other commitments, being a barangay captain.
Speaking to provincial government employees after the flag-raising ceremony yesterday, Gov. Arthur Defensor Sr. took potshots at unnamed SP members he said were getting instructions from their principal not to approve the budget./PN