BY EUGENE Y.ADIONG
BACOLOD City – Every local government unit must have a disaster risk reduction and management office.
It is mandatory, according to a joint memorandum circular of the Civil Service Commission, Department of Budget and Management, Department of Interior and Local Government and Department of National Defense.
Under Republic Act 10121 or the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010, there are four mandatory positions under the local disaster risk reduction and management office (LDRRMO).
These are the head of the LDRRMO and his three staff, said DBM Region 6 director Alfonso Bedonia Jr.
“When we started implementing the law, most local government units did not organize their LDRRMO,” Bedonia said, and those who organized merely appointed persons to them in concurrent capacity.
Now, under Joint Memorandum Circular No.2014-1 dated April 4, 2014, mayors and governors have to appoint personnel to their LDRRMO.
Bedonia said most local governments cited the 20-percent budget limit for personnel services under the Local Government Code for not creating local disaster management offices.
“Now under the joint memorandum circular, all salaries and benefits for the four mandatory positions that will man the LDRRMO are classified as waved items,” he said.
This means that even if the local government exceeds the budget limit for personnel services, it can still appoint personnel to the LDRRMO.
“If the local chief executive does not make such an appointment, basic services especially in disaster preparedness will be badly affected,” Bedonio said./PN