Cebu City on track with P3B collectionBy Doris C. Bongcac
Cebu Daily News
Halfway through the year, the Cebu City Treasurer’s Office already collected P3 billion by early August or more than half of its target for the year.
Mayor Michael Rama gave credit to efforts of department head Emma Villarete to boost tax collection since her assumption last July 19.
Rama, who had lobbied hard to keep Ofelia Oliva as city treasurer, said he was fine having Villarete occupy the post. Villarete, who used to be assistant city treasurer, replaced Oliva in early August.
“Emma Villarete knows what she is doing and she will go into some programs,” said Rama.
Asked if he’s still working for the return of Oliva, the mayor said, “I do not want to answer that question.”
He said his complaint against Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima over the treasurer’s appointment remains pending in court.
In his complaint, Rama question Villarete’s appointment which took place when the Secretary still had to resolve the mayor’s motion for reconsideration.
“But if I will lose in the (court) case, I will be a gentleman and accept it,” said Rama.
Rama said there was nothing personal in his objection to Villarete’s appointment.
The City Treasurer’s Office needs to raise P5.2 billion to fund the city’s annual budget.
Villarete said she’s confident the target will be met if they intensify collections efforts.
The city collected P3 billion from January to early August. This includes the city’s share of P655.8 million in Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA).
Business tax collections reached P1 billion.
Earnings from extraordinary receipts such as proceeds from the sale of lots in the South Road Properties (SRP) and the city’s Slum Improvement Program reached P567.75 million.