Loans allowed only to LGUs with good housekeeping seal

Published by rudy Date posted on August 9, 2012

Only local governments that have been conferred the Seal of Good Housekeeping (SGH) will be allowed to secure a loan from banks and other financial institutions, Secretary Jesse Robredo of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) declared.

Robredo said the Bureau of Local Government Finance (BLGF) has issued a circular that listed SGH among the stringent requisites for LGUs applying for authority to borrow money from banks and other financial institutions.

“We welcome this development because SGH is now being recognized by other national government agencies and other concerned sectors as an effective way to determine whether an LGU has good financial management, is ready to secure loans and pay for them,” he said.

The SGH is being conferred on local government units (LGUs) that have no adverse report from the Commission on Audit and have complied with the posting of the required 12 financial documents. SGH awardees are also eligible to receive an incentive fund ranging from P1 million to P7 million for their development projects.

Just recently, the DILG launched the SGH Bronze, Silver and Gold, in which aside from the two previous requirements, additional requisites include compliance with the Government Procurement Act and the Anti-Red Tape Act, a comprehensive development plan and an above-benchmark performance in the local governance performance management system.

“Now, only those LGUs with the seal and who walk the daang matuwid will be able to borrow money from banks to finance their local projects,” Robredo said.

Local Finance Circular 1-2012 laid out new documentary requirements, which LGUs need to submit to BLGF before they can be granted certificates of borrowing and debt service capacities should they need to borrow money.

The circular, signed by Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, whose department oversees BLGF, superseded Local Finance Circular 1-2000 issued on Jan. 19, 2000.

The new circular requires, aside from the Seal of Good Housekeeping, also a letter-request from the local chief executive; certification from the local legislative body that the proposed project to be financed by the loan is included in the Approved Annual Investment Plan for the current year; an authenticated copy of the resolution authorizing the local chief executive to negotiate and contract a loan; and proof of compliance with the full disclosure policy of the DILG. –Gina P. Elorde, Daily Tribune

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