Garcia holds most number of committee chairmanship

CEBU City Councilor Raymond Alvin Garcia keeps the committee on budget and finance as well as three other committees he has held for the past two years as the Cebu City Council retains the status quo of committee chairmanships before a new council will convene after the May 2022 general elections.

Garcia’s chairmanship of four committees is the most among the members of the City Council, which is composed of the vice mayor, 16 councilors and two ex-officio members.

The 15th Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP) held its annual organizational session on Wednesday, July 7, 2021. The council has 26 committees.

The Cebu City Council has retained the current officers and the chairmanship of the committees for the fiscal year 2021-2022.

Garcia still holds the committee on housing; committee on laws, ordinances and styling; and committee on sister cities relations and big brother programs.

Garcia, a lawyer, also remains as the Majority Floor Leader.

Garcia sits as the president of Kugi Uswag Sugbo (Kusug), a local political party founded by his father, former mayor Alvin Garcia.

Other councilors who are currently officers of Kusug also retain their chairmanships—Councilor Jerry Guardo, the north district vice president, chairman of the committee on infrastructure; Councilor Joel Garganera, secretary general, chairman of the committees on urban planning, and environment and natural resources; Councilor Niña Mabatid, auditor, chairperson of committees on labor, employment, cooperative and livelihood; tourism, arts and culture; and women and family affairs.

Vice Mayor Michael Rama, who used to have the most committees during the fiscal year 2019-2020, chairs the committee on health, hospital services and sanitation and the committee on education, science and technology.

Councilor Eduardo Rama Jr. holds the committees on social services; public services; and information and communication technology.

Councilor James Anthony Cuenco chairs the committees on transportation, communications, energy and other utilities, and house rules and oversight.

Councilor Renato Osmeña Jr. chairs the committees on trade, commerce and entrepreneurship and markets; Councilor Donaldo Hontiveros chairs committees on scholarship programs and games and amusements; and Councilor Phillip Zafra holds committees on public order, agriculture and rural development.

Independent Councilor David Tumulak, meanwhile, still chairs the committee on disaster risk reduction management, safety and climate change adaptation.

As to the officers of the City Council, Councilor Rama is still the presiding officer pro tempore; Garganera sits as the second assistant majority floor leader; Councilors Zafra, Nestor Archival, and Joy Augustus Young remain as the first assistance majority floor leader, minority floor leader, and assistant minority floor leader, respectively.

The two ex-officio members, Association of Barangay Councils (ABC) President and Kasambagan Barangay Captain Franklyn Ong and Sangguniang Kabataan Federation President Jessica Resch hold the committee on barangay affairs and committee on youth and sports development.

Aside from Ong and Resch, no other councilors belonging to the minority bloc hold a committee.

Vice Mayor Rama, in a press conference after the organizational session, said there is no need to change the current officers and chairpersons.

“Why fix it when it’s not broken?,” said Rama.

The 15th SP has less than one year left before the next set of councilors will assume office in 2022. (JJL)