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STATE OF THE CITY ADDRESS Mayor Ma. Lourdes C.

Fernando 6th Regular Session of the 4th City Council of Marikina 7 February 2007 Quadrangle, Marikina City Hall Years ago, we started by doing what was necessary, then tackled what was possible, and now we are pursuing those previously thought to be impossible. Our efforts have not wavered from building a community that is fair, democratic and forward looking. I am proud to say that Marikina is headed towards the right direction. Our hard work, competitive spirit and political maturity have borne dividends. We have moved from the traditional system of politics to a result-based system of performance politics. Every agency of our government is made to account for its performance. We have stretched whatever resources were available to do justice to our peoples share in governance. Turning Vision into Reality We now see the fruition of our efforts in the pursuit of our vision of becoming a little Singapore. Our house is in order. We have done face-lifting on some old structures along major thoroughfares in support of the Metro Gwapo Program. Our existing settlement sites have been upgraded by concreting roads and alleys, construction of drainage, getting rid of stray animals and other eyesores and providing the necessary amenities. This includes the ISKINITA ni GMA which covers 900 meters of alleys in Balubad, Nangka. We have signed several agreements with lot owners and have moved closer to our vision of a squatter-free Marikina. We are coming closer to putting an end to the perennial problem of flooding in some lowlying areas near our river with the expansion of our concrete road dike. The road dike is now 2 kms. long; and this is the best technical solution to our nagging problem of flooding. In recent years, the number of evacuees resulting from river overflow had gone down significantly. This is indicative of the positive impact of the road dike in terms of flood mitigation. We have constructed an additional 11 kms. of bicycle lanes. There are now a total of 51 kms. of bikelanes. This project is targeted to be completed by March this year. The bikelane will soon be connected to the LRT Station in Santolan as the city has recently completed negotiation for the purchase of a property along Marcos Highway. This will fulfill our dream of connecting all Marikeos to the international airport and the rest of the world. This facility is important to our constituents who cannot afford motor vehicles and who have the right to mobility without getting maimed or killed. Integral to improving the quality of our environment is the development of pocket parks. In 2006, we developed 17 new people parks covering a total area of 4 hectares. We planted 2,000 trees in various parts of the city, exceeding our target of 1,000 new trees a year. Our efforts had been relentless in expanding our citys green areas not only to maintain a balance between urbanization and environmental preservation, but also to alleviate urban heat. Peoples Park is important because it is a public place where people meet as equals regardless of their social status. Also in 2006, we expanded the Peoples Mall by roofing additional 1,000 meters of roadways. Now, our whole market zone is covered. The attendant benefit of such an expansion in terms of security and convenience to the market goers and market vendors

cannot be overemphasized. The Peoples Mall is important because it is our citys leading economic enterprise and, at the same time, our countrys showcase of a healthy market place. Our roadside improvement and upgrading of drainage system covered an aggregate of 37 kms. This furthered our vision of making our city walkable and flood-free. Our efforts at improving urban quality are being complemented by the construction of the C-5 road by-pass project by the DPWH which will become functional within the year. This infrastructure will not only improve access and mobility, but will also change the face of our city. Powerful Images of Economic Progress The foundation that we had laid down is now bearing fruit. We can see powerful images of economic progress around us. The ICT Call Center opened at the Riverbanks which currently employs 1,700 people. Another Call Center will soon rise at the Robinsons Supermarket across Blue Wave Marquinton whose construction is now nearing completion. Adjacent to the Robinsons Supermarket is the Marikina Valley Medical Center - - - a modern tertiary hospital which is now fully operational. The construction of Shoe Mart by the river is in progress. When completed, it will create 4,000 jobs and income-generating opportunities, further pumping new blood into our economy. An encouraging number of new business establishments have sprouted along BayanBayanan and A. Tuazon Avenues. These are two areas where economic activities congregate without spoiling our citys physical integrity. Political Maturity The basic manifestation of political maturity is the peoples faithful compliance to their tax obligations. Our city generated an annual income of Php1.3B in 2006. We had witnessed once again the enthusiasm of our constituents in paying their taxes as demonstrated by the immense crowd that swarmed the city hall lobby right at the onset of the year. Gone was the old habit of late payment of taxes. It has been superseded by prompt and correct payment of taxes which is indeed a beacon of political maturity. Notwithstanding the population increase, the average volume of waste generated a day dropped from 600 cubic meters in 2005 to 500 cubic meters in 2006. This could be attributed to the peoples support and commitment to the citys call for waste segregation in households. We also recorded a high waste diversion rate of 30%, which is the highest in Metro Manila. It was even higher than what the law mandates, which is 20%. The spirited engagement of Bantay Bayan in our citys peace-keeping efforts likewise mirrors political maturity. Men and women alike continued to come forward to volunteer their services to help protect lives and properties. Our city staged a number of crowddrawing events; and the Bantay Bayan played a pivotal role in keeping them safe and hassle-free. Patronage of the Rehiyon Rehiyon Festival, Angkan Angkan Festival, Shoe Festival and Marikina Christmas Festival was another vivid manifestation of our peoples support to city-initiated activities. We had seen how the crowd that witnessed these events significantly swelled in 2006.

Professionalizing the Bureaucracy We efficiently stockpiled supplies and materials for the use of the various offices of the city government. Efficient stockpiling is critical to the efficient delivery of programs and services. Our Central Warehouse is touted as the cleanest and most organized government warehouse in the entire Metro Manila. We embarked on E-Health Care to improve the administration of our health services. The computerization of records and systems will particularly result in improved logistical and patient management. This project will be expanded in 2007 to cover all our health centers. We had moved the local PNP to its new office on the ground floor of Justice Hall. It signaled the concretization of our commitment to improve the crime-fighting capabilities of our police force. The police has taken an active role in our efforts at boosting our local economy through its professional service. A highly professional PNP that it is today would always be an image-enhancing element in our community. We had put in place Management Information System, Geographic Information System and Internet Map Viewer for better access to information, better planning and better decision making. These are imperatives of a client-friendly cityhall. In 2006, we launched the Marikina City First Employees Welfare Fund. Under this package, city hall employees, regardless of the nature of employment, can avail of cash benefit in the event of hospitalization and funeral assistance. This is another milestone in our efforts to boost the spirit of our city hall employees. Our claim to a professionalized bureaucracy was validated by the Seal of Frontline Service Excellence which was awarded by the Civil Service Commission to the Business Permits and Licensing Office in 2006. The City Treasurers Office, on the other hand, earned a Very Good Performance Rating from the same agency. These two offices clearly stood out from among the seventeen (17) local government units in Metro Manila in terms of client-friendly and professional service. More Infrastructure on the Rise We embarked on a number of vertical infrastructure to address community needs in the areas of education, health, sports and economic development. These emerging infrastructure include the 3-Storey DepEd Building, Marikina Elementary School, Santan High School, Malanday High School, Multi-Purpose Covered Gymnasium, 8-Storey Marikina Sports Park Building and Diagnostic Center. The old DepEd building will be connected to Teatro Marikina and will house the Doll, Miniature, Belen and Clothes Museums. These infrastructure will further enhance our citys capacity to meet our present and future development needs. They reflect our citys proactive mindset which is essential in improving competitiveness. Investing on Education for the Future Last year, we invested heavily on education in our quest for a better future. We strongly believe that education is a major asset that we have to build on. I must thank our educators for living up to the challenge. They have taken the extra mile to push our public education to the desired level of competitiveness.

This year we will see the first batch of graduates of 4-year courses at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Marikina. Our strength will continue to rely on schools as an instrument of behavioral and economic change. Empowering the Citizenry A total of 2,000 citizens benefited from our wide array of skills training and other related interventions spearheaded by Center for Excellence and City Womens Council. This is in addition to what the Center for Excellence has processed under technical vocational skills and behavioral and aptitude training numbering 8,000. The Center for Excellence has also launched Training for Call Center Work Program in partnership with TESDA and two private schools. We broadened the wellspring of knowledge of our local people who are highly employable. We have not only equipped them with skills, but with the right attitude as well. It is highly essential to have a shared vision and shared values for our city to move forward. Through our Workers Affairs Office, we assisted 5,000 jobseekers in finding employment. The City Womens Council has empowered a significant number of training beneficiaries in terms of employment and livelihood endeavors, thus, contributing a great deal in the reduction of our citys unemployment statistics. We remained steadfast in our fight against unemployment. We effectively served as a conduit between employers and jobseekers. We continued to employ in the city hall an average of 500 volunteers at a time working four (4) hours a day. It is a program that does not only accord volunteers an opportunity to earn a modest income, but also inculcates in them the virtues of discipline, hard work and productivity. Extensive Networking We strengthened and expanded our network through our citys active participation in the League of Cities of the Philippines and its major thrust: City Development Strategy. We had the honor of being invited as resource persons and participants in the 2006 World Urban Forum held in Vancouver, Canada and a number of CITYNETsponsored fora. CITYNET is an association of premier cities in Asia that provides membercities avenues for learning, exchanges and benchmarking for improved governance and global competitiveness. We formalized our sister-city alliance with Brampton City, Ontario, Canada and are now in the process of establishing one with Blacktown City in Australia. City officials of Brampton are slated to pay a visit to our city this year as part of our exchange programs. Nurturing Arts and Culture Our city remained a strong advocate of the arts and cultural appreciation and development. We went beyond the ordinary in expressing our love for the arts and culture by adopting renowned Filipino performers, namely: the Philharmonic Orchestra, Philippine Ballet, Rock Education Artists, Ilustrador ng Kabataan and Madrigal Singers as Honorary Citizens of Marikina. Their recognition plaques are on display at Teatro Marikina.

This judicious selection of aesthetic influences had bolstered our resolve to make our city the fulcrum of arts and culture in eastern metropolis and Rizal. This week Marikina plays host to the International Dance Conference on Pangalay. We will have the chance to see them dance later tonight. Better Barangay Governance 2006 saw the birth of a new barangay in Barangay Tumana, bringing to sixteen (16) the number of barangays in our city. The creation of Barangay Tumana stemmed from the need to divide into two geographically large and highly dense barangays to enhance community management. We appointed barangay officials whom we feel have the distinct traits to meet the challenges of managing this culturally-diverse community. In a short span of time, peace and order have been restored in this once rowdy community, thanks to a vigilant governance and a staunchly dedicated police precinct, working hand in hand with barangay leaders. I must commend all the Barangay Captains for proving equal to the task of community building and development. Notwithstanding the rapid urbanization, our communities have been kept in a high state of livability. The contribution of Homeowners and Community Association Presidents in ensuring compliance to the National Building Code in their respective jurisdictions could not be overlooked. Their active participation in governance has made so much difference. Our communities now have become more manageable. Our settlement site in Balubad, Nangka has been divided into several associations that facilitated the MOA signing with TQG Enterprises, the land developer of the Tuason. Meaningful Legislation As in the past years, our city was privileged to have a dynamic and working legislative body in 2006. What else could speak for their significant accomplishments but the many pieces of legislation enacted in 2006, including the following:

Ordinance Regulating the Junkshop Operation Ordinance Creating the Marikina City Council and Barangay Councils for the Protection of Children and Appropriating in the City and Barangay Annual Budget One Percent (1%) of its Annual Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA). Ordinance Creating a Business Complaints Committee and Defining its Duties and Functions. Ordinance Establishing the Marikina City First Employees Welfare Fund.

While the basic function of the City Council is to legislate changes, some of our councilors assumed lead roles in managing important city projects and activities to include RehiyonRehiyon Festival, Police Memorial Day, International Sports Events and Management Information System. Our Vice Mayor has once again shown his savvy in spearheading an anti-illegal drug campaign with remarkable results. He has carried out, and continues to carry out, this special task without fear and compromise. All these demonstrate the competence, dedication and versatility of the members of our City Council. Marikina shall not run out of good leaders who can carry on the task of building a bright future.

DEL Delivers Our good Congressman Del de Guzman has lived-up to our peoples high level of expectations by being actively engaged in the work of Congress and by delivering multifarious projects. Some of his significant achievements in 2006 include the following:

Passage of Republic Act 9364 Creating another Congressional District in Marikina City. With two congressional districts, there will be an enhanced flow of funds and resources from the national government to our city through the Priority Development Assistance Funds of our two representatives in Congress. District 1 will be composed of Barangays Barangka, IVC, Sto. Nio, Jesus dela Pea, Taong, San Roque, Malanday, Sta. Elena and Kalumpang. District 2, on the other hand, will be comprised of Barangay Marikina Heights, Concepcion I, Concepcion II, Fortune, Parang, Nangka and Tumana. Passage of Republic Act 9290 otherwise known as the Footwear, Leather Goods and Tannery Industries Development Act. Allocation of PhP50M for hard infrastructure to include road and drainage improvement projects, 11 multi-purpose buildings and 3 school buildings. Allotment of PhP18M to the City Government as LGU Assistance, PhP5M for DSWD, PhP4M for public hospitals and PhP2.5M for Philhealth coverage.

Operating with Vigor, Passion and Focus I must acknowledge the Executive Branch comprising 31 offices for doing their job with vigor, passion and focus. Once again, our city did not incur budgetary deficit. This speaks well of judicious management and utilization of our financial resources. We also boast of productive and dedicated human assets in 2,000 city employees. I am proud to say that in the last six years, we have not added manpower to the bureaucracy, but instead have extended more services to our constituency. This speaks of a highly productive civil service team. What the Executive Branch had accomplished lends credence to the popular impression of our institution as a working bureaucracy. Major Awards/Citations Again, our city garnered scores of major awards and recognitions in 2006, including the following:

Most Competitive Metro City in the Philippines Given by the Asian Institute of Management, Policy Center Healthy Cities Award for Outstanding Performance in Healthy City Endeavors Given by the World Health Organization Healthy Cities Award, Best Practice in Emergency Preparedness Planning Given by the World Health Organization One of the Three Most Child-Friendly Cities in Metro Manila Given by: Department of Social Welfare and DevelopmentNCR/Office of the President 2006 People of the Year for Public Service Given by: People Asia Magazine

These awards attest to the good governance that we have been able to sustain through the years. 6

Development Directions in 2007 and Beyond 2007 will usher in new milestones towards economic prosperity. We will take advantage of opportunities that will grow our economy and create opportunities for all. Our city is now ripe for more investments. We look forward to 2007 as a boom year for Marikina. Our city is ready to take a new thrust in 2007. Our eyes are now set towards a new vision of becoming a Model City in Competitiveness in Southeast Asia by 2015. In the pursuit of this vision, we expect greater private sector participation in governance under the framework of the Public Governance System, which involves multiple sectors in the formulation of a road map, project execution and monitoring strategies in support of the citys journey to 2015. Marikinas PGS is composed of representatives from various sectors in our city headed by Engr. Ed Francisco of Business and Dr. Larry de Guzman of Academe. It is now in the process of formulating sectoral action plans that will serve as its guidepost from hereon to 2015. To be globally competitive, we will take a hard look at two models namely: Vancouver, Canada and Bogota, Colombia. The Vancouver and Bogota models encourage mixed land uses, green areas interspersing with gray areas, upward development being more efficient, greater access to major transport channels, less cars and more walking. Vancouver and Bogota provide excellent benchmarks in good urban management with emphasis on effective land utilization. In 2007 we can expect the following:

More and better schools for improved learning and competitiveness. Strengthening of the Speak English Campaign to include Speech Laboratory at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Marikina that will help equip Call Center aspirants with English proficiency. Greater involvement of parents in developing their childrens good study habits. Adoption of TESDAs ladderized extension program as an intervention in making available tertiary education for the marginalized youth. Better strategies to find long-term employment for job seekers. Launching of Marikinas Best Managed Communities which is aimed at promoting good governance and responsible citizenship by giving recognition to good practices covering various facets of community management among subdivision and homeowners associations. Printing and circulation of the new edition of the Marikina Fact Book to further promote institutional transparency and accountability. Pursuit of waste water treatment initiatives. Implementation of sixty (60) various infrastructure projects to address our citys infrastructure needs to fuel economic growth. Operationalization of the all-weather Tumana Bridge resulting in improved mobility and traffic decongestion in our major thoroughfares.

Establishment of new performance standards to guide city hall employees for higher productivity. Full computerization of the city hall. Establishment of Citywide Internet Canopy Network which will connect the barangays, schools and health centers to the city government. Establishment of first E-court in the country. Better police visibility with the provision of more vehicles and computer connections in all police stations. Increased security for marketgoers with the installation of monitoring/security cameras within the vicinity of Peoples Mall. Establishment of Marikina Business Registry Data Bank thru the initiative of Marikina Valley Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Opening of Camacho, Nangka Livelihood Center to expand our reach for economically nurturing activities.

We will continue to build a Dream City where there is equal application of rules and great opportunities for all. We will continue to build a society where every individual is treated fairly, mindful of the fact that such treatment encourages people to put a stake in the city, to work hard, to dedicate themselves to their craft and to measure up to the standards of being Marikeos. A Call to Action I call upon everyone to join our city on its journey into the future. I look forward to another year of dynamic and productive partnership with our good Congressman, the Sangguniang Panglungsod, Barangay Governments, the Judiciary, educators, businessmen, homeowners and community associations, religious groups, socio-civic organizations, womens groups and other stakeholders. I am proud of our city and the progress we have made together. I am proud of how weve come through the tough times and the choices we have made. And I am humbled by the people of Marikina whose faith, perseverance and values have shown why our city is such a wonderful place to live in. Many have said it could only be done in Marikina because the Fernandos have the political will but I say it could only be done because the Marikeos are politically mature. They know that sacrifices have to be made to make a change in our society. Thank you for making those sacrifices we are now reaping the benefits of the order and discipline we have planted. Sa lahat ng vendors na umalis sa bangketa, sa lahat ng nagbayad ng multa sa towing, nagmulta ng dahil sa nahuling aso, nagbigay ng lupa para maging kalsada, nagbawas ng bahay upang lumapad ang bangketa, nagbayad ng buwis, nagvolunteer, tumulong maraming, maraming salamat po. Let us continue to dream BIG and preserve those dreams with vigor and passion. Together, let us enjoy the adventure that will lead us to our dream city. Soon we will see not only a Marikina we all love but a great city we continue to be in love with.

Mabuhay po tayong lahat!