BAGUIO CITY — The Baguio City Council, on Monday, January 25, approved the city’s counterpart of PhP4 million for the conduct of the 21st Baguio Flower Festival beginning February 1.

Baguio City Councilor Betty Lourdes Tabanda, on Wednesday, January 27, said the subsidy for the Baguio Flower Festival will be managed by the Baguio Flower Festival Foundation, Inc. (BFFFI) and allocated as prizes of the winners in the different festival-related competitions.

The prizes will be released and should be claimed at the city hall after the awarding ceremony.

Tabanda said that during the deliberations in the council, some members played around the idea of abolishing the city’s counterpart because of the fact that the festival may and can survive on its own.

BFFFI Executive Committee Chairman Anthony de Leon assured the council that the Baguio Flower Festival will survive with the support of the LGU in terms of letters of solicitations to beef-up the foundation’s budget.

In the council, de Leon said the other festivals in the country spend, at least, PhP7.5 million and as much as PhP25 million as counterpart and support.

Tabanda added that some of the councilors suggested increasing the subsidy to PhP5 million.

At the end of the discussion, PhP4 million was approved.

Tabanda said this budget is primarily for prizes of winners for the flower float, street dance, landscaping and all other competitions that will happen for the entire celebration of Panagbenga 2016.

“Only top prizes are taken from the subsidy of the city, the minor prizes are shouldered by the BFFFI,” Tabanda said.

The disbursement of the prizes will be at the Baguio City Treasure’s Office which will go through the regular government accounting rules and regulations. PNA/