BAGUIO City is eyeing focusing on its revenue-generating projects to reduce reliance on taxes for funding, according to Baguio Mayor Benjamin Magalong.
Magalong said the city will look into implementing revenue-generating projects including pay parking projects, the planned intermodal transport terminal, market development, digital transformation center, project lightning, and other such projects that generate steady income for the city.
“We are expecting about P500 to P600 million if these are all fully operational, an income that will incrementally increase every year,” Magalong said.
According to Magalong, it is better to look into income-generating projects rather than taxes as it is difficult to implement tax reforms owing to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It will take a long time for our economy to get back to its growth path. It will be difficult times ahead, who will increase taxes? So the only way to be able to generate a consistent revenue stream is through economic enterprise and that is what we are doing now,” he said.
Magalong stated that the city’s income has not grown significantly since 2015, and that the budget for health and social services has been low, with increases not enough to cover inflation and population increase.
Magalong cited the pandemic where the city received P3 million in aid, but was able to generate P29 million for healthcare needs on its own once it mobilized its own income generation.