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90% of LGUs handle their finances well

Over 90 percent of local government units (LGUs)  have handled their money well, meeting good financial housekeeping (GFH) standards.

While a number of towns, cities and provinces fell short of bagging the seal of good local governance, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) officer in charge Catalino Cuy said, “This is a very good indication that the majority of the LGUs are now keeping their financial procedures and records in order.”

A total of 1,563 local government units made up of 79 provinces, 137 cities, and 1,347 municipalities were included in the GFH list.

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According to Cuy, only 152 LGUs did not make this year’s list.

Cuy explained that good financial housekeeping means that the LGU adheres to accounting and auditing standards and complies with the full-disclosure policy on its budget, finances, bids and public offerings.

To meet GFH standards, LGUs must have no 2015 qualified and unqualified opinion from the Commission on Audit and must post their financial records in three conspicuous places as well as in the Full Disclosure Policy website.

Core areas

Good financial housekeeping, Cuy pointed out, is part of financial administration, which is among four core areas for an LGU to achieve the seal of good local governance. Other core areas are disaster preparedness, social protection, as well as peace and order.

LGUs also need to satisfy one of the essential areas, including business friendliness and competitiveness; environmental management; or tourism, culture and the arts.

Last week, 448 LGUs met all the criteria and earned the seal of good local governance.

Cuy noted, “The seal of good local governance is not easily up for grabs.  LGUs have to work hard and show that they have what it takes to bag the seal.”

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Records from the Bureau of Local Government Supervision show that all LGUs in two regions: Ilocos and Soccsksargen, representing 183 LGUs, complied with GFH requirements.

In the Caraga region, only one of 78 LGUs failed to meet the GFH standards while in the Davao region 53 of 54 LGUs passed the GFH assessment.

The Cagayan Valley region, Central Luzon and the Western Visayas got 97-percent GFH passing rates with 95 of 98 LGUs in Cagayan Valley, 133 of 137 LGUs in Central Luzon, and 135 of 139 LGUs in the Western Visayas meeting GFH standards.

In Metro Manila, only Manila and Muntinlupa City did not make it to the list.

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