QC seniors can seek 1% share of annual barangay budget

QUEZON City’s older citizens can now ask their local barangay to fund their proposed plans and activities for the year, after a city resolution to this effect was signed into an ordinance in November, said a city legislative staff.

The ordinance, number 2355, Series of 2014, authorizes all Quezon City barangays to allocate “at least 1 percent of the total of their annual budget” for programs, projects and activities that will benefit seniors and persons with disabilities (PWDs), said Nica Veron B. Ticman.

Senior-citizen associations in the barangay registered with the Office for Senior Citizens Affairs (Osca) only requires to propose a plan to the barangay council for funding, since the budget is not in the “form of cash,” she said.

Senior citizens can receive the budget in the mode of duly approved programs, projects and activities that shall meet the basic needs and be beneficial to the senior citizens,” Ticman noted.

Recognizing the role of senior citizens in nation-building, the ordinance is seeking to provide them with programs, projects and activities that include medical/dental services, fitness and wellness, social services, livelihood and employment, legal assistance, and recreation.

The social services will cover home health care and assisted living.

The ordinance states that other programs, projects, or activities also include other benefits and privileges under senior citizens and PWDs law.

The 1 percent of the total annual budget for the barangay shall be “proportionately divided among senior citizens and PWDs,” since the number of seniors is usually bigger than the PWDs, she said.

The Osca in Quezon City has the record of the existing number of registered senior citizens in each barangay in the six districts.

For this reason, all the barangays shall get the number of their PWDs, which is required in determining the proportionate sharing of the annual budget, she added.

Ticman made clear the ordinance per se is not the 1 percent of the IRA from the barangay that the senior citizen law stipulates.

“It’s total annual budget for seniors and PWDs,” she said.

The same proposal, Resolutions SP-4324, S-200, by then-councilor Francisco Calalay, who is now representative for the first district, was enacted by the city council, she said. Unfortunately, it was vetoed by the past administration.

Councilors Roger P. Juan and Godofredo T. Liban II, as main proponents, raised the same pro-senior citizen measure early this year.

Signed by Mayor Herbert Bautista on November 28, the ordinance will seek to benefit about 375,000 registered senior citizens in Quezon City, Ticman said.

Oliver Samson

Oliver Samson covers cybersecurity for the Business Mirror as correspondent. He wrote for the Manila Standard and the Philippine Daily Inquirer as correspondent before joining this news outfit in 2013. He publishes Rapid Planet Slashers, a website on cockfighting.