Eleven local government units (LGUs) in Negros Occidental, including Bacolod City, received a total of P26 million in incentive funds as awardees of the 2023 Seal of Good Local Governance of the Department (SGLG) of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).
During the awarding rites held at a hotel, Negros Occidental had the most number of awardees in Western Visayas, with 11 LGUs, among them the province led by Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and Bacolod, as well as seven component cities and two municipalities.
Each LGU awardee will receive an SGLG marker and incentive fund of P4 million for the province, P2.3 million for the cities, and P1.8 million for the municipalities to support their respective local development initiatives.
“The SGLG represents more than an award and a distinction and serves as a testament to the province’s unwavering commitment to delivering outstanding public service through fostering transparency, upholding accountability, and embracing the principles of good governance,” Lacson said in a statement.
Bacolod City Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez, a first-term local chief executive, described receiving the SGLG award for the city as a “proud moment of recognition.”
“This is a testament to our unwavering commitment to excellence, transparency, and public service. As we proudly receive this seal, it reaffirms our pledge to continue fostering good governance practices, ensuring accountability, and delivering significant services to the City of Bacolod,” he added.
San Carlos City led the component city awardees from Negros Occidental. It is the only city in the Visayas and one of the eight cities in the country that made it to the elite list of 22 LGUs for receiving the SGLG for the seventh time.
“I am greatly honored and pleased to receive the SGLG award — the long-enduring testament of our consistency in delivering good governance and quality public service,” Mayor Renato Gustilo said in a separate statement.
Other recipients were the cities of Cadiz, Escalante, Sagay, Victorias, Talisay, and Himamaylan, as well as the municipalities of Manapla and La Castellana.
The SGLG, enacted through Republic Act 11292 in 2019, is an institutionalized award, incentive, honor, and recognition-based program that encourages the commitment of LGUs to continuously progress and improve their performance in various governance areas.
The SGLG maintains the “all-in” principle where a local government must pass all governance areas — financial administration and sustainability, disaster preparedness, social protection and sensitivity, health compliance and responsiveness, sustainable education, business-friendliness and competitiveness, safety, peace and order, environmental management, tourism, heritage development, culture and arts, and youth development. (PNA)