By JO ERLINDA G. NEBRES
MAKATI CITY/QUEZON CITY — The city government of Makati has posted P13.9 billion in revenues in 2015 bolstering its hold as the second wealthiest city in Metro Manila and the entire country after Quezon City which raked in a record P15 billion last year.
Mayor Herbert Bautista said the Quezon City government ended 2015 with a surplus of P1.180 billion based on a report of city treasurer Edgar Villanueva.
In Makati, acting Mayor Romulo Pena Jr. credited the increase in revenues to the reforms instituted by the city government.
Pena said the collection was nine percent higher than those in 2014.
In the report submitted to Peña, City Treasurer Amalia Santos said business tax collection in 2015 increased by 10 percent compared to 2014, having a total amount of P7,269,958,966.76. Real property tax collection amounted to P4,824,440,124.43, or a seven percent increase than figures from 2014.
Other local sources of income of the city include fees and charges with P630.9 million, and economic enterprises with P215.6 million.
Locally-sourced revenue of Makati reached a total of P12.9 billion in 2015. The city also posted P128.4 million in interest income, and got P869.3 million as its share from the national government (IRA). Makati is one of the few local government units that are not dependent on the IRA.
Peña welcomed the positive development with “a combination of gratitude and vindication.”
“The city government under the new Makati administration is deeply grateful for the tangible support and confidence shown by the city’s foremost development partner, its thriving business community. We also feel vindicated by the increase in new investments and improved business retention in the city, proving our detractors and the doomsayers wrong,” Peña said.
The acting mayor said based on the records of the Business Permits and Licensing Office, some 4,211 new businesses registered brought in over P23 billion in paid-up capital in 2015, while over 30,000 existing businesses raked in around P1.1 trillion in estimated combined gross sales last year.
Peña attributed the city’s improved economic performance to the strong commitment of his administration to transparency and public accountability.
“For the past six months, we have put in place much-needed reforms intended to curb corruption and safeguard the city’s resources against abuse and misuse. We have established a transparent bidding process to ensure that our constituents and all target beneficiaries receive the best quality of services we can afford,” he said.
He also gave credit to the enhanced efficiency in the processing of business permit applications and renewal, as well as in tax collection, for the significant increase in revenue.
Peña reassured Makati’s constituents and stakeholders of his continuing commitment to promote agood governance through transparency and equitable distribution of the city’s wealth, and urged them to actively take part in city-building.
“Let us all join hands in building “Bagong Makati”, a city where economic growth will have a meaningful impact on all, even the poorest families, and where everyone will have their fair share of the city’s abundant resources,” said the acting mayor.