RDC 5 gears up for the FY 2022 budgeting exercise

The Bicol Regional Development Council conducts an annual orientation with representatives of regional line agencies, local government units, the House of Representatives, and the private sector on updating the Regional Development Investment Program in preparation for the succeeding year’s budgeting exercise. This year’s event was conducted last October 14, 2020 via videoconference.

In her opening message, NEDA Regional Director and RDC Vice Chairperson highlighted the investment priorities for FY2022 : “ The priority PAPs for FY 2022 are those that will cushion the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic and similar health hazards.” These are the Regional Recovery, Peace and Development, and Balik Probinsya, Bagong Pag-asa Programs. Priority will also be accorded to RDC- endorsed Regional Core PAPs which are critical and non-negotiable that are needed to attain the Regional Development Plan (RDP) targets. The Mandanas-Garcia Supreme Court Ruling that will be implemented in CY 2022 will also be considered to strengthen synergy of national and local government units through devolution of resources.

As a way of gearing up for the preparation of the FY 2022 agency budget proposals, presentations were on the development planning process, the Regional Development Plan 2017 to 2022 Mid-Term Update, and the CY 2019 Regional Development Report to refresh the participants on the overall development framework. The event was highlighted with sectoral workshops on updating the Regional Development Investment Program 2017 to 2022 where participants familiarized themselves on how to update their respective contributions towards the operationalization of the RDP in terms of programs, activities, and projects.

With increased awareness on the processes, timelines and documentary requirements, the RDC expects an increased number of PAPs being funded in the region for FY 2022.


Bicol RGADC officers earn fresh mandate from members

The Bicol Regional Gender and Development Committee (RGADC), during its online meeting held on September 22, 2020, gave fresh mandate to its officers with the election of Dir. Agnes E. Tolentino of the NEDA Region 5 as chairperson and RDC Private Sector Representative (PSR) for Women Aurora C. De Guzman as co-chairperson for the term 2020 to 2022.

Director Tolentino was elected anew after assuming the position as chairperson in 2016. As chairperson from 2016 to 2020, the Bicol RGADC received the Women Lead Award given by the Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) as the RGADC with the most number of women as permanent members. Meanwhile, PSR De Guzman, a dedicated gender and development (GAD) advocate, will co-chair the RGADC for the first time. Ms. De Guzman is currently the Sectoral Representative of the Women Sector Council to the National Anti Poverty Commission of the Philippines. Their leadership in the RGADC will be confirmed by the Regional Development Council during its full council meeting in December 2020.

The debut meeting for the female front runners of the RGADC resulted in the approval of the Central Bicol State University of Agriculture as the Bicol Regional Gender and Development Resource Center, the adoption of the online Gender Focal Point System (GFPS) Profile Form, which was established by the PCW, and the approval of the representation of Ms. Jennifer M. Arao for the persons with disabilities.

The PCW’s sharing of the salient features of Republic Act No. 11313 or the Safe Spaces Act prompted the RGADC members to reinforce their commitment to promote equality, security, and safety of every woman in both public and private spaces, including online and onsite workplaces. Strengthening the functionality of barangay violence against women and children (VAWC) desks will provide access to services and thus ensure that the rights of women and children will continue to be protected and upheld.


The participants of the RGADC meeting


The participants during the 2nd Semester 2020 RGADC meeting.


Bicol Balik Probinsya, Bagong Pag-asa Committee prepares action plan

The Balik Probinsya, Bagong Pag-asa (BP2) Committee for Bicol region held its organizational meeting and action planning workshop on July 24, 2020 via videoconference. In a pre-recorded message, Secretary Gregorio B. Honasan, Cabinet Officer for Regional Development and Security for Bicol and BP2 Committee Chairperson, lauded the region’s efforts in organizing the BP2 Committee and preparing the Regional Action Plan for the BP2 Program. He emphasized that “The BP2 program is a sustainable whole-of-nation approach focused on promoting the local economy of each region to ensure balanced regional development all over the country, inclusive growth and industrialization in rural areas”. Essentially, the BP2 program is geared towards addressing congestion in Metro Manila by encouraging people to return to their home provinces. Through this program, the government will assist Filipinos in their transition back to the provinces by providing necessary support like transportation, livelihood, housing, education among others.

Undersecretary Marvel C. Clavecilla, the Presidential Adviser for Bicol, addressed the committee and ensured his commitment to provide strategic advice in the implementation of the BP2 program. NEDA Regional Director Agnes E. Tolentino, Vice Chairperson of the BP2 Committee, presided the meeting, which started with a presentation of the Executive Order (EO) No. 114 and the BP2 Implementing Guidelines by Architect Marissa B. Maniquis of the NHA Central Office as the BP2 National Council Secretariat.

The Regional Development Council (RDC) is the counterpart of the BP2 National Council at the regional level. Under the RDC is the BP2 Committee which will coordinate the BP2 activities in the region. It is composed of governors, mayors, the RDC sectoral committee chairpersons and co-chairpersons, and regional line agencies. Recognizing their relevance in carrying out the mandate of the BP2 Committee, the membership of the committee was expanded to include other government agencies and private sector representatives.

The 140 participants composed of representatives from the regional line agencies, local government units, and private sector organizations, and the RDC private sector representatives gathered in five virtual break-out sessions and came up with draft action plans for the BP2 key result area assigned to them, i.e. empowering the local industries, ensuring food security and agricultural productivity, providing social services and employment, and developing infrastructure to improve the quality of life in the rural areas. The BP2 Regional Action Plan will be finalized for endorsement of the committee to the RDC for adoption.


RTF- ELCAC Bicol convenes, pursuit of just and lasting peace continues

The Bicol Regional Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (RTF-ELCAC) or RTF Katoninongan Asin Kauswagan (RTF-ELCAC) met on June 29, 2020, to discuss the continuity of activities despite the temporary halt due to CoVid-19. Usec. Marvel C. Clavecilla of the Office of the Presidential Adviser for Bicol Affairs, presided the meeting via videoconference attended by its members and representatives from the National Security Council.


Some of the RTF Katoninongan Asin Kauswagan Members during its meeting held via Zoom

Sec. Gregorio B. Hosanan, Cabinet Officer for Regional Development and Security (CORDS) for Bicol, on his pre-recorded message, congratulated the Bicol RTF ELCAC for its collective and proactive efforts that made the region advanced in bringing peace and development. He challenges the RTF to continue what it has started to meet the target in the Bicol region.

The Peace and Development Program 2019-2022 is the enabling umbrella program of the Bicol RTF Katoninongan Asin Kauswagan to address the root causes of insurgencies, internal disturbances, and other armed conflicts and threats, for inclusive development. The Peace and Development Program composed of various PAPs of agencies and local government units are mostly intended for the geographic focus areas. The total investment requirement over a period of three (3) years amounted to PhP71.35 billion of which the PAPs amounting to PhP7.85 billion were submitted to the National Task Force ELCAC as inputs to the 2020 Barangay Development Package.

To assist the RTF-ELCAC in carrying its functions as provided under Executive Order No. 70, the RTF TWG was organized with senior technical personnel from 23 agencies, and two private sector representatives (one from the RDC PSR and one from the RPOC PSR) as members.

Meanwhile, Mayor Noel E. Rosal of Legazpi City, and Bicol RDC chairperson emphasized the importance of monitoring the region’s accomplishments in terms of project implementation, and to ensure that the programs, activities, and projects (PAPs) of the RTF are included in the annual budgets of the agencies.

As manifested in the reported accomplishments of the heads of the 12 RTF clusters for the first semester of 2020, the members remain sincere in their commitment to drive the region to its desired target. The active participation and steadfast efforts of the RTF members are vital to address the gaps encountered, and be more zealous to attain a just and lasting peace, in support to national development.




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