BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
The local revenues derived from the facilities managed by the provincial government of Negros Occidental reduced as much as 40 percent during the period covering 2020 to 2021, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, revealed Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz yesterday.
Diaz specifically cited the drop of income due to the non- operation of the Mambukal Resort and Wildlife Sanctuary in Brgy. Minoyan, Murcia and the Negros Residences in Bacolod City, which were converted into isolation facilities for COVID-19 patients.
The good is that the Negros First Cyber Centre, which was already turned over to the provincial government, earned about P65 million in the past seven months, although that figure is lower to what it was projected to earn, Diaz added.
During the ECQ (Enhanced Community Quarantine) period, Diaz said that the provincial government granted requests for rental discount to Ayala and 888 malls, as high as 40 percent, and 25 percent discount during the MECQ period.
Similar discounts were given tenants of the shopping malls, he added.
“We granted their request for a discount in the spirit of ‘bayanihan’ and support for our investors and businesses, most of which are from Bacolod,” Diaz further said.
With the reopening of Mambukal, we expect tourists to once again flock our facility, he said.
Diaz also reported that slots at the Negros First Food Terminal will soon be awarded to those that applied for a space, which is also expected to generate more income for the provincial government.
He also said that the Provincial Treasurer’s Office will also step up its tax collection efficiency, with the help of local government units.*