To ensure the efficient delivery of devolved functions and services amid devolution, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) today assured that it will carry out continuous capacity development (CapDev) efforts to empower local government units (LGUs), particularly in managing agriculture, health, and environment services.

“The administration of President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. remains committed to providing LGUs with support and technical assistance amid full devolution. I urge the Local Government Academy (LGA) to lead and collaborate with national government agencies (NGAs) towards improved CapDev initiatives in areas where they need it the most,” DILG Secretary Benjamin “Benhur” Abalos, Jr. said.

Abalos said that based on the assessment conducted by the DILG referred to as the LGU Devolution Transition Plan (DTP) Analytics, the priority sectors for provinces in the CapDev agenda are agriculture, environment, health and administrative, while those for component cities/municipalities are agriculture, health, environment, social welfare, and administrative sectors, as identified by the respective LGUs.

He said that LGA, in collaboration with the NGAs, must calibrate its CapDev initiatives in connection with the result of the said analytics to better address the CapDev needs of LGUs. “We must adhere to the results of the DTP Analytics as these will guide us on the most ideal CapDev initiatives to be implemented to better assist the LGUs amid the implementation of full devolution,” he added.

He further explained that among the areas covered by the Data Capture Forms (DCF) included in the said assessment are the inventory of devolved functions and services, phasing of full assumption of devolved functions, services, and facilities by the LGU, LGU budget for FSFs for full assumption, existing and proposed additional plantilla position, and budget and performance monitoring for devolved functions and services.

In the regional briefing on full devolution conducted recently, DILG’s Bureau of Local Government Development (BLGD) mentioned that the Analytics also showed that LGUs recommended the hiring of additional regular staff in provinces, cities, and municipalities to aid them in their health, agriculture, social welfare, and infrastructure responsibilities. “The proposed augmentation of human resources will support full devolution. With such, no province, city, municipality, and barangay will be left behind,” Abalos said.

As mentioned in the briefing, 99 percent or 75 provinces, 144 cities, 1,370 municipalities, and 39,450 barangays have already submitted their DTP. Only one barangay in Capiz, one municipality in Nueva Ecija, and one province in Negros Oriental did not submit their DTP.

“We are closely assisting LGUs that have not yet completed and submitted their DTPs. Hopefully, they can meet the requirements so they could start operationalizing and incorporating it in their budget preparation and revenue mobilization,” Abalos said.

He added that consultations between NGAs and LGUs on the delineation of NGA programs, projects, and services supporting devolved functions are still underway.

LGU CapDev Segmentation

DILG Secretary Abalos said LGA likewise conducted a study based on the indicators of the 2021 Seal of Good Local Governance to determine the capacity and performance of LGUs in the context of the implementation of full devolution.

He said that it showed that 51 percent or 878 out of a total of 1,706 LGUs profiled have high capacity and high performance and require a higher level of CapDev activities to elevate their current status. Only 26.6 percent or 455 LGUs remain to have a low capacity and low performance, which will be needing significant foundational, enabling, and developmental interventions to enhance their capacity and performance.

Abalos said LGA has trained 143 DILG and Local Resource Institution (LRI) coaches in 2022 and certified 59 Level 1 coaches to provide continuous training in CapDev agenda formulation to LGUs.

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