Wednesday, November 8, 2017

AgNor extends financial assistance

By Jessica O. Mellejor

BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 8 – The provincial government of Agusan del Norte, through Provincial Governor Ma. Angelica Rosedell M. Amante-Matba, extended help and financial support to one of the barangays in Buenavista, Agusan del Norte.

Amante-Matba was authorized by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, through Sanggunian Resolution No. 281-2017 authored by Provincial Vice Governor Ramon A.G. Bungabong, for the said financial assistance to Barangay Sangay.

The barangay celebrated its 52nd Araw ng Barangay on September 18, 2017 and to make the celebration more festive and memorable, the provincial governor supported by facilitating an allocation of P30,000.00.

The Provincial Government of Agusan del Norte and the Barangay Government of Sangay of Buenavista shall sign a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) covering the terms and conditions, as well as the respective responsibilities of each party in the release and utilization of said funds.

On the other hand, Amante-Matba also extended financial assistance to the Department of Education (DepEd)-Division of Agusan del Norte in the amount of P35,000.00, in support to the 2017 National Music Competition for Young Artists (NAMCYA) held at the University of Immaculate-Davao City last September 28 to October 1, 2017. The Children’s Choir, Solo and Youth Rondalla from Buenavista Special Education (SPED) Elementary and High Schools represented the Caraga region in this event, being the semi-final qualifiers for Mindanao cluster level.

Said financial assistance was in support to the activity, which will develop and promote the skills of the students of Agusan del Norte. (LGU Agusan del Norte/PIA-Agusan del Norte)


AgNor town prohibits pawning of 4Ps cash card IDs

By Jessica O. Mellejor

BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 8 – The local government unit of Nasipit, Agusan del Norte is now prohibiting government officials/employees and private individuals/groups and local businesses or corporations from accepting Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) cash card IDs as loan collateral.

This was after the Sangguniang Panlalawigan approved Municipal Ordinance No. 009-2017 from the Sangguniang Bayan of Nasipit prohibiting 4Ps cash card IDs as loan collaterals.

The 4Ps, formerly known as Ahon Pamilyang Pilipino, is a conditional fund transfer program of the national government through the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), which aims to eradicate poverty in the country by investing in health and education particularly in ages 0 to 18.

Based on the report of the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office (MSWDO) in the municipality of Nasipit, its 4Ps beneficiaries are already pawning their cash cards to those who are taking advantage of their plight by extending them loans using their 4Ps cash card IDs as collateral.

The measure aims to declare the said act as illegal and prohibits government workers, private individuals/groups and local businesses in the municipality from accepting such cards as collateral and imposing a penalty for any acts of violation.

The municipal ordinance is also in line with Provincial Ordinance No. 435-2017, “An Ordinance Prohibiting the Pawning of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) Cash Cards IPs or “Kasabutan” of Government Officials and Employees, Private Individuals/Groups and Local Businesses”.

Sanggunian Resolution No. 278-2017 approving the said Municipal Ordinance was authored by Provincial Board Member Elizabeth Marie R. Calo. (LGU Agusan delNorte/PIA-Agusan del Norte)


DTI AgSur joins coop month celebration

PROSPERIDAD, Agusan del Sur, Nov. 8 - “We need you to work with us more.”

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Agusan del Sur (AdS) OIC-Provincial Director Brenda Corvera told he province’s cooperatives as she presented updates during the provincial government’s Cooperative Month celebration.

Corvera reported that of the 79 projects of the agency with AdS local government units (LGUs) under the 2014 to 2016 Bottom-up Budgeting (BuB) program, only six of the project proponents were cooperatives.

This would show that cooperatives are not yet collaborating with LGUs, who are the project implementers of BuB. It is the same situation with DTI’s Shared Service Facility (SSF) program. Of the 33 project cooperators DTI is working with, only six (6) coops are on board, operating eight SSF projects.

Fortunately under the agency’s Industry Cluster Enhancement (ICE) program, of the 28 groups engaged in the different industry clusters such as cacao, rubber, bamboo, palm oil, coconut, abaca and processed fruits and nuts, about 75 percent or 21 are cooperatives.

Five cooperatives also sent their managers and/or chairpersons as mentees in DTI- AdS' two batches of Kapatid Mentor Me (KMME) program, while at least three have been engaged under DTI's newest program Strike Team for Indigenous Peoples (IPs).

Corvera also invited the coopertaive and their members to avail of the services of the province’s Negosyo Centers in San Francisco, Talacogon, Bayugan City, Sibagat, Prosperidad (Provincial Hub), Trento and soon in Bunawan and Esperanza.

The event was attended by three lady Mayors – Mayor Liza Evangelista of Sibagat, Mayor Leonida Manpatilan of Esperanza, and Mayor Jenny de Asis of San Francisco. They were joined by Sangguniang Panlalawigan Member and Committee Chair on Cooperatives and Tourism Hazel O. Del Rosario. Also present were representatives of Gov. Adolph Edward G. Plaza and Congresswomen Maria Valentina G. Plaza and Evelyn Plaza-Mellana.

Coop-NATCCO Party List Representative Sabiniano S. Canama was guest speaker.
The activity held at the Covered Court of the D.O. Plaza Government Center in Prosperidad had about 1,000 cooperative members in attendance. (DTI-Agusan del Sur/PIA-Agusan del Sur)


AgSur town LPCC meets; checks market price, consumer goods supply

PROSPERIDAD, Agusan del Sur, Nov. 8 – The members of the Local Price Coordinating Council (LPCC) of San Francisco, this province convened and discussed updates on the price and supply of basic consumer goods in the market.

Municipal Administrator Jocelyn Juen presided the meeting, in behalf of the Council Chairperson Mayor Jenny De Asis.

The Municipal Agriculture Office (MAO), Municipal Economic and Enterprise Development Office (MEEDO), Municipal Health Office, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Consumer Assistance Center (CAC) gave updates on the products under their monitoring coverage.

As reported, prices of monitored products were reasonable and compliant with the suggested retail price (SRP). Others depended on the bulk or volume of supply, it was learned.

Compared with the August monitoring, prices of agricultural products this November are reportedly lower. Antoinette Plaza of MAO explained that this may be due to the fact that vegetable farmers are now on harvesting season.

Cerila Inson of DTI-Agusan del Sur also reported that almost all of its monitored products complied with the SRPs.

“However, there was one store, which had prices higher than the SRP. A show cause order was already issued to the concerned establishment,” she added.

During the meeting, it was agreed that prices of "lechon manok" (roasted chicken) shall be included in the monitoring especially during the Christmas season. The MEEDO through the CAC is assigned to do the monitoring.

The council meets every 1st Friday of the second month of the quarter. In 2018, their first meeting will be on February 2. (DTI-Agusan del Sur/PIA-Agusan del Sur)


DOE to finalize natural gas policy

BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 8 – The Department of Energy (DOE) held a public consultation on the implementing guidelines of the Philippine Natural Gas Regulation (PNGR), a policy issuance that would govern the entry and development of liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry and its related facilities in the Philippines.

In behalf of Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi, Undersecretary Donato D. Marcos said, “the PNGR will serve as the regulatory framework in the promotion of the Philippines as an LNG emerging market characterized by a liberalized/competitive environment and market-based pricing.”

“Also, the implementation of the PNGR is hoped to pave the way in meeting the target of the Secretary to have the ground breaking for an LNG import facility by 2018,” he added.

With the policy in place, Marcos added that “the Philippines can readily start importing LNG to safeguard the anticipated drop in the supply of the Malampaya natural gas in 2022, coupled with the forthcoming termination of its concession by 2024.”

The recent public consultation drew clarifications on implementing guidelines concerning permit application, permitting and clearances of other government agencies, and requirements on reporting, import and supply.

Additional topics on gas quality standards, import accreditation validity period, anti-flipping protection, the effect of Executive Order 30, the third party access (TPA), transmission and distribution of gas, aggregation, incentives and the gas mix were also discussed.

It was attended by 47 companies and institutions representing local and foreign stakeholders, as well as prospective businesses interested in venturing into the natural gas industry in the country.

Previous public consultation focused on the regulatory framework covering the definition of terms, structure and operations of upstream, ownership, franchising, roles and responsibilities of the DOE and the Operator, competition and gas pricing policy, incentives, insurance, establishment of evaluation committee and other relevant laws.

The DOE encourages the public to engage in making the proposed policy more comprehensive by sending their comments and suggestions to doe.oimb.ngmd@gmail.com until 10 November 2017. A copy of the proposed policy is downloadable at the DOE official website (www.doe.gov.ph). (DOE/PIA-Caraga)


PhilMech researchers develop inexpensive coffee moisture meter

By Ofelia F. Domingo
  
BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 8 – Researchers from the Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PhilMech) have developed a better, simple, inexpensive alternative yet accurate coffee moisture meter for green coffee beans and coffee parchments. This is through a project funded by the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST-PCAARRD).

The research team led by Engr. Arlene C. Joaquin of PhilMech, in partnership with a local electronic company, made a prototype unit coffee moisture meter using a capacitive sensor oscillator circuit for both green coffee beans and coffee parchments.

Coffee farmers, buyers, and processors need not employ the traditional, subjective, slow, destructive and costly way of moisture content measurement.

Joaquin, in a project report, indicated that the prototype moisture meter is sufficiently accurate for three coffee varieties: coffea arabica, coffea liberica, and coffea canephora, for both green coffee beans and coffee parchments. This was the result of calibration experiments and validation tests conducted at PhilMech, Nueva Ecija.

It is important to know the amount of moisture content in coffee parchment and beans to maintain high cupping quality. Green coffee bean with high moisture content (greater than 12 percent wet basis) can deteriorate due to bacteria, mold, and yeast. On the other hand, coffee beans with less than nine percent moisture will shrink and become distorted, making them appear as low quality beans.

Monitoring the coffee’s moisture content at all times after it dried is necessary to ensure high quality and to command a better price at the time of sale. (DOST-PCAARRD S&T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


CSU-Surigao Norte initiates security, safety gun-handling course

By John Glenn A. Platil

SURIGAO CITY, Nov. 8 – The Civil Security Unit (CSU) of the provincial government of Surigao del Norte conducted a shortened Security and Safety Gun Handling Course and Evaluation.

In his message, Surigao de Norte Vice Governor Arturo Carlos Egay, Jr. said that "the activity seeks to empower the guards on duty at the Capitol premises to exercise caution and vigilance, especially in the discharge of their official functions and sworn responsibilities.”

He added that the buildings must be fully secured from infiltrators, especially outsiders who take advantage of the situation, in order to sow discord, wreak havoc, or commit terroristic acts that would endanger the lives of Capitol employees.

These 12 golden rules for safe gun handling were underscored during the lecture:
1. Always treat the gun as loaded;
2. Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction;
3. Always keep your finger straight and off the trigger until you are ready to shoot;
4. Always keep the gun unloaded until you are ready to use it;
5. Never point the gun at anything you don't intend to destroy;
6. Be sure of your target and what is beyond it;
7. Learn the mechanical and handling characteristics of the gun you are using;
8. Always use proper ammunition;
9. Be sure the barrel is clear of obstructions before loading and shooting;
10. If your gun fails to fire when the trigger is pulled, hold your shooting position for several seconds; then with the muzzle pointed in a safe direction, carefully unload the gun;
11. Don't rely on the gun's safety to keep it from firing;
12. Be aware of your surroundings when handling guns so you don't trip or lose your balance and accidentally point and/or fire the gun at anyone or anything.

CSU personnel were briefed on the proper handling of their guns and weapons to prevent any untoward incident. They also took their respective examination and were evaluated on the spot.

It should be stated that people, especially security workers must never fool around or play with guns. Guns are dangerous when they are not handled or used properly and can easily injure or kill innocent civilians, and those around you. There are no second chances with a gun and the rules for safe gun handling must always be followed to avoid accidents. (PGO-SDN/PIA-Surigao del Norte)


AgNor LGU to sign MOA with DENR on forestland use plan

By Jay Vincent Demain

BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 8 – The provincial government through Agusan del Norte Governor Ma. Angelica Rosedell M. Amante-Matba is set to sign a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)-Caraga Regional Office for the formulation and updating of the Forest Land Use Plan of the Province of Agusan del Norte.

The land use plan is vital for a holistic and efficient management of forest resources in the province. Per DENR Joint Memorandum Circular 98-01, LGUs are encouraged to undertake forest land use planning in close coordination with the DENR to come up with the comprehensive land use and forest land use plans.

The MOA is necessary to lay down the duties and responsibilities of the province and the DENR, of which trainings, field works, cross visits and workshops are part of the planning process.

Forest land use planning is a necessary step in rationalizing allocation and management of the province’s forest and forest land resources.


The MOA signing was authorized by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Agusan del Norte through Sanggunian Resolution No.301-2017 and the efforts of Provincial Board Member Salutario B. Cuasito. (LGU Agusan del Norte/PIA-Agusan del Norte)