As the 2017 Search for Cleanest and Greenest LGU came to a close last June 20 and with the team of evaluators finishing the consolidation of final results last June 23, 2 municipalities, Polomolok in the first district and Surallah in the second district, emerged as the strong contenders to get this year’s most coveted crown. But the team of evaluators composed of representatives from the Provincial Environment Management Office, Provincial Planning and Development Office, Provincial Information Division, Arts, Culture, Tourism and Museum Promotions Unit, Integrated Provincial Health Office, South Cotabato Foundation Inc. and Dole Phils. disclosed that the winners will be known only on July 13 during the opening program of the 2017 T’nlak Festival, the date set for the announcement of winners. Earlier, the Department of Interior and Local Government Provincial Office which is the contest secretariat released the initial results of the evaluation showing Surallah leading followed by last year’s first place winner Polomolok in second place; Tupi and Tampakan in tight third and fourth places, respectively, while Sto. Nino mowed up to fifth place and T’boli got the sixth place. They were followed by Lake Sebu, Norala, Koronadal City, Banga, Tantangan, ranked from seventh to eleventh place in that order. But just like the previous years, the order of the list of winners might change as the initial evaluation is composed only of 40 percentage points while the final evaluation on the other hand, has 60 percentage points. Up for grabs for this year’s contest are the big cash incentives in which the .first place winner will receive P800,000.00, second place P500,000.00, third place P300,000.00, fourth place P10,000.00, fifth place P100.000.00 and sixth place P80,000.00.A consolation prize of P40,000.00 will also [...]
CITY OF KORONADAL --- Some 32 Quarry and Small-Scale Mining Enforcers and Inspectors have undergone a one-day Orientation/Seminar on Small-Scale Mining and Quarry Operations, Safety Inspection and Enforcement of Related Laws, Ordinances and Policies, here, conducted recently by the Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO). Nencita Acain, chief of PEMO – Mines and Geo-Sciences Management Division disclosed that the objective of the training is to capacitate quarry and SSM enforcers and inspectors about quarry, SSM and other relevant laws as well its operations. The training was divided into 2 parts wherein the morning topics and discussants in involved SSM and were as follows: National Laws on SSM and Quarry Operations – Engr. Hernani Abdon, MGB 2; Enforcement of laws and Policies – Atty. Marnilo Cosep, PEMO; Proper Quarrying Methods and Tips on Monitoring of Quarry Operations-Engr. Roger Tamayo, MGB 12. Meanwhile, quarry operations were discussed in the afternoon with the topics and discussants as follows: Safety Inspections in Tunnel and in Gold processing Plants-Engr. Benedict Ekwe, MGB 12; Provincial Ordinances on SSM and Quarry Operations-Nencita Acain, PEMO. Aside from quarry and SSM enforcers and Inspectors, City and Municipal Environment and Natural resources Officers and representatives from barangays where quarry operations are located also participated in the training. A synchronized tree-planting and community service were also conducted this week by quarry and SSM cooperatives and associations in selected areas in the province and was also supervised by PEMO-MGD. Said activities are part of the Philippine Environment Month celebration this month of June with its theme “Connecting People To Nature.”
In celebration of the Philippine Environment Month this June, quarry and small-scale-mining (SSM) operators located in the province will conduct a synchronized tree-planting and community service on June 14. In a written memorandum, Provincial Environment Management Officer Siegfred Flaviano directed SSM and quarry cooperatives and associations to conduct synchronized tree-nurturing or re-planting in areas planted last year with low survival rate, with the seedlings to be provided by the respective cooperative or association. Likewise, they were directed to conduct community service through feeding program of selected children in a purok or school or distribution of school supplies to pupils or students of their choice, or other meaningful activities as agreed by the cooperatives and associations. Nencita Acain, chief of PEMO – Mines and Geo-Sciences Management Division said that they will monitor the whole-day activity of the SSM and quarry operators. “Some 8 SSM associations in T’boli and 6 quarry associations - 1 located in Polomolok, 4 in Koronadal City and 1 in the upper valley area are expected to participate,” Acain added. For individual operators who are not members of associations or cooperatives, the memorandum likewise required them to join the activity of the nearest association or may conduct their own tree-planting and community service. The SSM and quarry operators are also required to submit a written report complete with documentation particularly on the location, activity undertaken, number of beneficiaries, and number of seedlings planted, among others, to PEMO on or before June 26 as part of their Community Development and Management Program as well as Environment Management Program.
The Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO) has reported that the Sand, Gravel and Mining (SGM) tax collection of South Cotabato from January to April this year now totaled P6,505,097.37. South Cotbato’s share from the SGM tax collection likewise increased from the previous 3-month total of P1,791,374.15 to P2,631,745.37 as of April this year, according to the report. PEMO observed that with the continuous increase in SGM tax collection this year, it might surpass its 2016 SGM tax collection of P18,743,092.83. SGM tax collection for the 4-month period this year now averaged P1,626,274.34 per month or slightly higher than the monthly average of P1,561,924.40 in 2016. Provincial Imposition include Sand and Gravel, Mining Tax, Small-Scale Mining Fee, Ore Transport Fee, Occupational Mining Tax, Verification Fee (Sand and Gravel), Filing Fee, Governor’s Permit Fee, Processing Fee, Fines/Penalties/Surcharges, Miscellaneous/Delivery Receipts and imposition based on PD 1856.
About 30,000 square meters (or 30 hectares) of Lake Sebu were cleared of illegal fish pens last month, this according to a senior official of the Lake Warden Office (LWO). Dondon Artacho, current LWO Officer-in-Charge disclosed that from May 25 – 31, their office jointly with Lake Sebu Municipal Agriculture Office conducted demolition of illegal fish pens in consonance with the Executive Order signed by Mayor Antonio Fungan implementing the 10% maximum allowable aquaculture zone for its municipal waters. “We were able to confiscate 800 bamboo poles used by errant fish cage operators in the demolished area during that period,” Artacho confirmed an interview by this writer. He added that most of the operators conducted self-demolition in compliance with the EO and were only able to confiscate from non-complying operators, 7 illegal fish pens and 2 illegal floating structures used as guard houses. Earlier, Lake Sebu experienced massive tilapia fishkill which costs hundreds of millions in pesos in damage to due to excessive fish farming that reached 22%, or more than 12% of the allowable limit in the aquaculture zone. According to the Office of the Municipal Agriculturist, 15 barangays of the town have excess cages totaling to 208,910 square meters and another 212,350 square meters have no permits or a total of 421,320 sq.m. subject to be demolish. With the implementation of the EO, PEMO said, may result as the solution to the recurring occurrence of fish kill that happens annually in the said town.
The 2017 Search for Cleanest and Greenest LGU is now on its official final leg with the window period scheduled by the Technical Working Group (TWG) starting from the last week of May until the middle of June. This year’s TWG members are representatives from the Provincial Environment Management Office, Provincial Planning and Development Office, Provincial Information Division, Arts, Culture, Tourism and Museum Promotions Unit, Integrated Provincial Health Office, South Cotabato Foundation Inc. and Dole Phils. Earlier, the Department of Interior and Local Government Provincial Office , the contest secretariat, released the initial results of the evaluation which showed Surallah leading followed by last year’s first place winner Polomolok in second place; Tupi and Tampakan in tight third and fourth places, respectively, while Sto. Nino mowed up to fifth place and T’boli got the sixth place. They were followed by Lake Sebu, Norala, Koronadal City, Banga, Tantangan, ranked from seventh to eleventh place in that order. Up for grabs are the big cash incentives in which the .first place winner will receive P800,000.00, second place P500,000.00, third place P300,000.00, fourth place P10,000.00, fifth place P100.000.00 and sixth place P80,000.00.A consolation prize of P40,000.00 will also be given each to non-winning LGUs. Special Prizes will also be awarded to deserving LGUs which are adjudged Best Public Market (P30,000.00), Best Plaza & Park (P30,000.00), Best Central Material Recovery Facility (P30,000.00), Best Barangay - 1ST(P30,000.00), 2ND (P20,000,00), 3RD (P10,000.00), Best Roadside Beautification (P30,000), Best Nursery (P30,000), Best Community Garden (P30,000.00), Best Backyard Garden (P10,000.00), Best Public Toilet (P10,000.00). A new set of criteria and mechanics were also introduced this year which are the following: Clean and Green Governance (30%), Support Facilities and Establishments (15%), City/Municipal Hall/Slaughterhouse/Health Center 15%), [...]
A Road Project Site Visitation was conducted by the Provincial Information Office and Provincial Engineering Office together with the South Cotabato Media recently in one of the road network project being undertaken by the province. Visited by the group was the Crossing Palkan – Lamsugod Road Network which starts from Polomolok up to Surallah and is a multi-agency funded project with sources coming from DA Food Security Project, PAMANA, PRDP, South Cotabato LGU, among others. Engr. Vicente Ayongao, Chief of PEO – Construction and Maintenance Division and which acted as the tour guide for the group disclosed that the road network passes through Crossing Palkan and Koronadal Proper in Polomolok, Simbo in Tupi and the hinterlands of Talcon, Lambangan and Lamsalome in T’boli, Lampari and Lambingi in Banga until Lamian and Lamsugud in Surallah. Since he project served as the shortcut route from Polomolok to T’boli, Engr. Ayongao added that road network will benefit not only the IPs or marginalized sectors in the area but plantation owners as well. Plantation farms such as banana and pineapple have sprouted for the past years in the said area which contributed much to the economy of the province. PIO plans to institutionalize activity on a monthly basis to showcase to the media the different infrastructure development projects of the province which is a banner program under the administration of Governor Daisy Avance Fuentes.
Eight (8) hospitals, clinics and Rural Health Units (RHUs) in the lower and upper valley areas of the province were recently monitored and inspected by the Health Care Waste – Technical Working Group (HCW-TWG). The HCW-TWG composed of multi-agency representatives from Provincial Environment Management Office, Provincial Information Division, Provincial Engineering Office, Integrated Provincial Health Office, Department of Health and, PhilHealth conducted the inspection in Tantangan RHU, Surallah Community Hospital, T’boli RHU and Moorehouse Mission Hospital in T’boli on the first day and followed by Norala District Hospital, Clinica Luntao in Norala and St. Jude Clinic and Hospital and ZMK Doctor’s Clinic and Hospital in Sto. Nino on the second day. Health Care Providers (HCP) were evaluated on their mandatory compliance to documentary requirements set by the Environment Management Bureau, DOH and the Local Government Unit such as Environment Compliance Certificate, Permit To Operate (Air Pollution Device), Water Discharge Permit, Hazardous Waste Generator ID/Permit, Local Business Permit, PhilHealth Accreditation, Laboratory Permits, among others, as well as operational requirements, particularly on the implementation of their health care waste management system. After the monitoring and inspection, an exit conference ensued with the findings and recommendations of the HCW-TWG discussed with the respective HCP. Another round of monitoring will be conducted in the succeeding months wherein the HCW-TWG will look into the compliance of the HCP and if found deficient, will recommend sanctions based on Provincial Ordinance #6, series of 016 otherwise known as the “South Cotabato Health Care Waste Management Ordinance.”
Preparations are now underway for the annual Search for Model Schools in Solid Waste Management with the conduct of an orientation meeting recently by the Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO) and Technical Working Group (TWG) members with the City and Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Officers (C/MENROs). Supervising Environment Management Specialist Elbe Balucanag together with Environment Management Specialist I Jobie de Jesus who served as the Secretariat presented to the attendees the revised criteria and mechanics of the contest, proposed schedule of the initial and final evaluations and prizes at stake. Under the revised criteria, LGUs in coordination with their respective MENRO and DepED division will select schools as their “best bet” for the elementary and high school categories. Likewise, Hall of Fame awardees that were placed in a 3-year hiatus after winning the contest for 3 consecutive years are now eligible to join the contest. Criteria of the Special Awards which include Best in IEC, Best in Documentation, Best in Recycling, Best in Organic Garden, Best in Composting, Best in Community Participation and Best YES-O Implementer were also discussed with the C/MENROs. The Secretariat and TWG will meet again on June 22 together with the C/MENROs and School Heads to discuss the final preparations of the contest which is scheduled on the first and second weeks of August for the initial evaluation and the first and second week of October for the final evaluation. Awarding of winners will be on November this year.
Some 115 families in Lake Sebu benefitted from the Communal Septic Tank (CST) Project implemented by the Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO) this year. Senior Environment Management Specialist Loida Villa of PEMO - Forest and Inland Water Management Division disclosed that the CST Project which cost P300,000.00, was implemented in the first quarter of the year at Isla Grande and San Miguel, all in Poblacion, Lake Sebu. Four toilet bowls were constructed at Isla Grande CST while five toilet bowls were likewise constructed at San Miguel CST, with the roofing and walling installed at the CSTs by the respective community as its counterpart to the project. Dondon Artacho, concurrent Officer-in Charge of Lake Sebu Warden Office said that 20 families benefitted from the Isla Grande CST and another 15 families for the San Miguel CST. Earlier, PEMO built ten CST Projects in Lake Sebu located at Tukofol, Lambaning, T’boli Village, T’benwo and Lamsufo in Barangay Poblacion, and also in Lake Lahit, Bacdulong, Lake Seloton, and Lamlahak, which benefitted a total of eighty families. PEMO plans to continue constructing CSTs in Lake Sebu in the succeeding years