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Bacolod City, Philippines Thursday, July 11, 2019
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Blessings and beginnings

Ninfa Leonardia

July began with a bang.

Recently, the whole country experienced a change of administration in local government units; we welcomed the new generation of officials at the Capitol as well. Governor Eugenio Jose V. Lacson is a seasoned politician, being mayor of the most promising LGU in the province - San Carlos City. I remember when he ended his term as mayor, I asked him what he was going to do next, he answered with a joke that he was going to be a full time lover, of course, it made us giggle and shriek. Vice Governor Jeffrey Ferrer used to be mayor of the drumbeating capital in the province - La Carlota – and always wears a smile. Both of them are now full time “fathers of the province”, which is a welcome development for Negros Occidental.

Many board members are also former mayors, like the chair of the Committee on Tourism BM Araceli Somosa, and vice chair Agustin Bascon; their experiences in handling LGUs assure us of a better performance in the next three years.

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The National Assembly of Pontifical Mission Society Philippines recently came to Bacolod City. His Excellency, Most Reverend Gabriele Giordano Caccia, Ambassador of Vatican City to the Philippines, also came for the second time and was honored with the Governor’s Fellowship Dinner at the Capitol. With him were Bishop Emeritus Vicente Navarra, Bacolod Bishop Patricio Buzon, Bishop Arturo Bustes of the Diocese of Sorsogon, and Msgr. Esteban Lo, national director of the Pontifical Mission Societies-Philippines.

The Papal Nuncio was received at the lobby of the provincial Capitol building by Gov. Lacson, offered lei by Mai Paltiguera, followed by the signing of the guest book. The Kabataang Silay Ensemble entertained the guests with the Papal Nuncio and Governor Lacson dancing the tinikling to the amazement of the crowd.

Cebu Pacific held a Trade and Tourism Session with representatives from the Department of Tourism Region 3 and Clark Development Authority at L’Fisher Hotel in Bacolod City with tour operators, social media influencers, and the media, for tourism awareness among Negrenses . It was in relation to the upcoming opening of a new flight route for Bacolod-Clark-Bacolod on August 9, which will cater to evening flyers best for weekend trips to Pampanga in Region 3.

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It is the beginning of classes for college students in private schools, and this is a pretty interesting semester for the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management of La Consolacion College with a new campus at the Amistad Center at LCC, Gardenville at Tangub in Bacolod. They have a new building just next to the swimming pool with modern facilities for tourism and hospitality management.

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With new beginnings, the Department of Interior and Local Government Regional Office 6 held a seminar for the six provinces on capacitating the comprehensive development plan technical assessment committee on the CDP review guide for component cities and municipalities in Iloilo. Negros Occidental was well represented and we move on with guiding LGUs in the land use plans for better governance with the new administration.*

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