By Chito Chavez
Incoming Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte highlighted her numerous achievements as vice mayor and presiding officer of the city council in her “Ulat sa Bayan (Report to the People)’’ on Monday afternoon.
In bidding goodbye as presiding officer of the city council, Belmonte said her leadership demonstrated accountability, honest and corrupt-free delivery of services, compassion and effective governance which set the bar on what true public service should be.
Belmonte likewise cited the city’s councilors who brought her “vision to life’’.
She thanked the council for sticking to the principles of good governance, and honesty in its ordinances and in its review of all the projects of the city government.
“When I first delivered my first speech in this chamber on August 26, 2010 before the members of the city council, barangay officials, civil society representatives, and city department heads, I promised to bring with me to this institution the values and ideas I espouse,’’ Belmonte said.
Under Belmonte’s leadership, the council members passed 298 ordinances and 948 resolutions.
For several consecutive terms, the council also received the National Local Legislative Award for Most Outstanding City Council given by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).
Belmonte also cited that recently the council passed landmark legislations such as the city’s Comprehensive Socialized Housing Code and the Dangerous Drug Code, among others.
Authored by Councilors Marivic Co-Pilar and Alexis Herrera, the Quezon City Comprehensive Socialized Housing Code of 2018 seeks not only to provide “affordable, safe and adequate housing” for low-income sectors in Quezon City but also to ensure access to employment and services within socialized housing areas.
The primary target of the legislation are the hundreds of thousands of underprivileged, homeless citizens and informal settler families from Quezon City.
Meanwhile, Quezon City’s drug code consolidated the programs and procedures already in place to implement community-based efforts to rid the city of drugs.
This included the comprehensive program to rehabilitate drug surrenderers, educate young people through schools, and enact sustainable partnerships with the police force, the church, non-government sector, and private sector.
Likewise, Belmonte highlighted the council’s Road Safety Code, Traffic Management Code, Responsible Gaming Ordinance, and its launch of the Batas QC mobile application that made available to the public all of the city’s ordinances.
She also called on Vice Mayor-elect Gian Sotto to “improve upon the various multi-awarded programs of the Office of the Vice Mayor’’.
These included the city’s urban farming program, the Quezon City Protection Center for victims of abuse, the city’s human milk bank, the rehabilitation and anti-drug programs of the city including a recently-opened center to rescue solvent-sniffing kids, the Quezon City Performing Arts Program, the QCinema international film fest, the Kabahagi Center for children with disabilities, and more.
Belmonte and Sotto will assume their respective posts on June 30, 2019.