Coming from a province that had been battered by a strong quake and recent floods from the shear line, low pressure area and typhoons, Rep. Alexie Tutor introduced changes to the bill on use by LGUs of their calamity to cover more areas.
Rep. Alexie Tutor (Bohol) has filed House Bill 7075 expanding the range of allowed uses of local government calamity funds, funding for LGU disaster departments, public-private partnerships, and build-operate-transfer modes for infrastructure and facilities.
It also includes provisions authorizing LGUs’ legislatures “to set reference and benchmark building standards higher than those set in the National Building Code, as amended, and factoring in the local disaster hazards specific to areas within their jurisdictions.”
HB 7075 adopts the “Designing Resilient Structures Handbook” of the Department of Interior and Local Government “as a set of national standards for the design of disaster-resilient housing for poor and low-income households and for basic local infrastructure,” Tutor said in a press release.
The bill also give the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority a mandate “to propagate and impart these national standards through free training programs to homebuilders, construction workers, electricians, plumbers, and masonry workers in communities and local governments so they can build their own and their neighbors’ disaster-resilient houses and basic community facilities,” she added.
Section 9 of HB 7075 provides: “In addition to its current allowed uses by virtue of existing laws and regulations, the local government Calamity Fund of a barangay, municipality, city, or province may also be used for the following purposes:
- compensation to private owners for temporary use of their buildings and other facilities for emergency and disaster response operations;
- construction and set-up of temporary evacuation facilities, field command posts, field hospitals and first aid trauma stations;
- unprogrammed emergency purchases and replenishment of urgently needed supplies and tools;
- deployment of special equipment for rescue, search, and recovery operations;
- deployment of mobile water treatment, purification, and refilling equipment; and
- deployment of portable fueled power generators and solar-powered charging stations.
Section 10 of HB 7075 gives the Department of Budget and Management the mandate to “promulgate criteria, guidelines, rules and regulations on allocations in the Local Government Support Fund (LGSF) for training, capacity-building and operational logistical support to First Responders Teams and city and municipal Emergency and Disaster Management Department (EDMDs).”
Section 10 of HB 7075 recognizes the constraints of the annual national budget, so the legislative bodies of cities, municipalities, and provinces are “authorized to enter into public-private partnerships and expanded build-operate-transfer modes of implementing scalable disaster resilience and climate adaptation and mitigation projects.”
The range of projects contemplated and enumerated in Section 10 of HB 7075 include but are not limited to:
- disaster-resilient facilities that shall serve as permanent evacuation centers, warehouses for relief goods, and multipurpose centers;
- underground, earthquake resistant utilities cabling and pipings for electricity transmission and distribution, telecommunications and high-capacity fiber optics, water distribution, and sewerage;
- indoor vertical food production;
- cold storage facilities for food;
- protection, growth and development of natural mangroves and coral reefs;
- reforestation of geo-hazardous terrain;
- construction of artificial barrier reefs, storm surge barriers, and coastal closure dams;
- construction of floodways, landslide barriers; and
- rivers desilting, dredging, and river basin flooding warning systems.
HB 7075 also tasks the National Economic and Development Authority, Department of Finance, and the Department of the Interior and Local Government to jointly promulgate the standards, guidelines, rules and regulations to govern:
- local government-proposed Expanded BOT and PPP projects for disaster resilience and mitigation and climate change adaptation;
- development, construction, and deployment of multi-purpose and special-purpose microsatellites, nanosatellites, and low Earth orbit satellites, and remote-controlled unmanned aerial and sea drones; and
- other capital-intensive projects that would span, involve, and benefit more than one local government unit jurisdiction and which the NEDA, DOF, DILG, and the Department of Budget and Management deem necessary to undertake with private investors.
Tags:#LGUs, #CalamityFunds, #RepTutor