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PBBM urges local executives to foster good governance.

On Tuesday, President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. urged local leaders to keep pursuing good governance to advance Filipinos’ welfare by seeking a stronger collaboration with the national government.

Marcos commented the Malacanang Palace in Manila during the swearing-in ceremony for the newly elected executives of the Provincial Board Members League of the Philippines (PBMLP).

For the past 35 years, the PBMLP has remained a steadfast partner of the federal government in promoting good governance and achieving excellence in public service. The PBMLP is based on the fundamental principles of capacity-building, effective legislation, and advancing the general welfare of provinces.

Marcos, a previous head of the local government, emphasized the significance of collaboration between the national government and the local government units (LGUs) to ensure the nation’s prosperity.

He claimed that the LGUs are necessary for the national government to be aware of “important” local matters, such as political rivalries.

“In the national government, your assistance is needed. We have to cooperate. In a speech before the recently elected PBMLP officials, he emphasized, “We must be aware of the local circumstances.

“Let’s carry this forward. Let’s make this alliance between municipal and federal governments stronger. Because of this, Marcos continued, “We can only maximize the resources, time, and energy that we are investing in developing the Philippines.

Marcos argued that to improve the lives of Filipino citizens, the national and local governments should collaborate while implementing various programs.

While LGUs collaborated with the national government, he made sure that his administration maintained local government authority.

It would help us give good service and ensure that the local and national governments are in sync, he said, “Para maging maayos naman ang patakbo natin para in sync ang local government at saka sa national government.”

Because the national government has transferred some of its responsibilities to local governments (LGUs) due to the Mandana’s judgment by the Supreme Court (SC), Marcos also promised to help local governments, particularly municipalities, enhance their capabilities.

Following the SC decision, Marcos ordered a review of Executive Order (EO) 138 to look for potential modifications and identify which national government duties should be transferred to the LGU.

To increase the autonomy and empowerment of LGUs, EO 138 was signed in 2021 to facilitate the effective execution of the SC decision in the Mandanas-Garcia case.

Many LGUs expressed concern about their incapacity to implement full devolution when the Marcos administration took office last year, especially about expensive, high-impact projects.

Around 450 LGUs, primarily fourth- and fifth-class municipalities, were recognized by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) in March as unprepared to take on their devolved responsibilities by the following year.

The Supreme Court determined in 2018 that local government’s fair share of federal taxes does not only include “national internal revenue taxes” gathered by the Bureau of Internal Revenue and other tax collection organizations.

The Mandanas decision requires the federal government to increase LGUs’ participation in tax collection.

However, LGUs are tasked with running social services within their respective spheres of influence, including agriculture, connectivity, and health.

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