Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Provincial Government can avail of uncollected IRA

LINGAYEN --- The uncollected Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) of the province of Pangasinan amounting to P79-million will boost the provincial government’s priority development programs.

Governor Amado T. Espino, Jr. has entered into a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the Landbank of the Philippines (LBP) for a 7-year term loan using as collateral the P79-million uncollected IRA of the province.

Earlier, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has earlier ordered the release of P12.58-billion to settle the unpaid IRA of local government units (LGUs) nationwide, which was not disbursed due to the reenactment of the national budget in 2001 and 2004.

The MOA signing, which was held yesterday, July 10, at the new office of the governor located at the refurbished Capitol building here, signals the capability of the province to monetize the whole amount of IRA collectibles backlog for the years 2001 and 2004.

The move, which was earlier approved by the provincial board thru Resolution No. 679-2008 authored by Board Member Tyrone D. Agabas, was offered by the LBP to serve as best scheme in monetizing the unreleased IRA.

Under the IRA Monetization Program (IMP), the provincial government will only receive a net amount of P55-million if they avail in advance their respective share due to the discounted value, net of interest and other charges from the government financial institution.

IMP likewise offer installment basis for a period of seven years from 2009 to 2015, which will entitle the province to receive P11-million every year. However, such option will not support the immediate delivery of social services.

Fifty percent of the IRA differentials will be used primarily to boost food production. (Ruby R. Bernardino and Ninia F. Nicolas)

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