Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III on Wednesday congratulated all local government units that received the Department of the Interior and Local Government’s (DILG) Seal of Good Local Governance for 2017. 448 local government units, or LGUs, received the award, a significant increase over the 306 awardees last year.
“The increase in the number of awardees is a good sign as we prepare for the shift to Federalism. Strong and capable LGUs mean we can reap the benefits of Federalism earlier”, said Pimentel.
Twenty-eight provinces, 61 cities, and 359 municipalities met the standards for the Seal of Good Local Governance, with the biggest number coming from Region I, which had 68 awardees.
To be awarded the Seal, an LGU must meet standards set in all four core areas (financial administration, disaster preparedness, social protection, and peace and order), while meeting the standards for at least one of the three essential areas (business friendliness and competitiveness, and tourism, culture and the arts, and environmental protection).
Awardees are given a marker that can be placed in their provincial capitol, city hall, or municipal hall, and are able to access the Performance Challenge Fund, a fund that can be used to support local development projects.
The Seal of Good Local Governance is guided by the provisions of the Republic Act 7160 or the Local Government Code of 1991, the General Appropriations Act of 2017 and Administrative Order No. 267 of 1992.
Pimentel, whose father, former Senate President Aquilino “Nene” Pimentel authored the Local Government Code, is an advocate of Federalism and increased autonomy for local government units. The Senate President is the author of Senate Bill No. 110, or the “Bigger Pie, Bigger Slice Law”, which would give more resources to LGUs by including collections of the Bureau of Customs from the pool of funds available to them and increasing their share from 40% to 50%.
Pimentel said, “LGUs are the levels of government closest and most visible to our people. They must have the resources and capability to deliver quick solutions to the problems that affect their jurisdictions.”