P600-M LBP loan scales up public services of prov’l gov’t

LINGAYEN – The loans secured by the provincial government from the Land Bank of the Philippines for the past 8 years amounting to P656.94 ...

LINGAYEN – The loans secured by the provincial government from the Land Bank of the Philippines for the past 8 years amounting to P656.94 million revved up public service and improved local entrepreneurs’ quality of production in various endeavors.
This was bared by Provincial Treasurer Marilou Utanes and Provincial Accountant Arturo Soriano, informing that the provincial government under the leadership of Gov. Amado T. Espino, Jr. has been prompt and judicious in its repayment obligations with the lending institution.
Of the total loaned amount, only P63.70 million remains to be paid, Utanes said.
It was learned, however, that the provincial government has also to settle the P343.55 million loan secured with LBP by the previous administration.

Spread over 8 years, the loaned amount was spent in the asphalting of provincial and municipal; roads (P149.04 million); engineering, construction and heavy equipment maintenance (P172.69 million); reconstruction and upgrading of hospital facilities (P271.36 million); reconstruction/construction and upgrading of other provincial buildings and facilities (P50.22  million); and housing and resettlement project (P12.72 million).
Soriano pointed out that Land Bank offered a loan portfolio of P2.4 billion, but the provincial government only availed P758 million of the window ceiling.

            “The province’s assets are so liquid and bankable that term-loan portfolios for development are opened for us to avail of,” Soriano said, adding that the Land Bank arrangement had a maturity period of 10 years at a low 5.5 percent interest rate per annum.

He said that owing to sound fiscal management policy adopted by the Espino administration, the provincial government was awarded twice the Seal of Good Governance by the Department of Interior and Local Government.

With improved and upgraded facilities, hospital services are now ISO-certified, meaning the system on public health care meets international standards.

The upgraded system and quality of services, Soriano noted, prompted the provincial government of Cebu to adopt as model Pangasinan’s hospital management system.
Records showed that following the upgrading of facilities funded by the loans, the number of patients availing of the services in the provincial government’s 14 hospitals increased by more than 100 percent.

This means, Soriano said, that the constituents, particularly those belonging to the marginalized sector, are now confident in having their sick treated in the hospitals owned and operated by the provincial government.

According to the provincial treasurer, the province’s improved road network has  bolstered economic activities, thus encouraging above-average tax collection. (PIO)


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