The Baguio City Council has approved on first reading a proposed ordinance aimed at providing financial assistance to qualified indigent individuals taking government licensure or eligibility examinations for the first time. The proposed measure authored by Councilor Vladimir Cayabas seeks to promote the employability of the residents and address unemployment and underemployment issues.

Under the proposed ordinance, qualified indigents, as determined by the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO), will receive financial assistance to cover the fees associated with various government examinations, including those conducted by the Professional Regulations Commission (PRC), the Civil Service Commission (CSC), the Bar Examinations, and TESDA assessments for national certifications.

Beneficiaries must meet certain criteria, including residency in Baguio City, indigent status, and being firsttime takers of government examinations. Mandatory requirements for applicants include certificates of residency, indigency, and firsttime examination taker status from authorities. To ensure efficient implementation, the ordinance proposes the establishment of a screening committee composed of representatives from government offices administering the examinations, the local government, and civil society organizations.

This committee will be responsible for screening applicants, setting prioritization criteria, and determining qualified
beneficiaries. The proposed funding for the ordinance amounts to P2 million annually from the city’s general fund. Financial assistance amounts vary depending on the type of examination, with P5,000.00 allocated for PRC and Bar
examinees, and P2,000.00 for CSC and TESDA National Certification takers.

If enacted, the proposed measure is expected to provide much-needed support to indigent individuals aspiring to obtain professional licenses and certifications, thereby opening doors to gainful employment opportunities and contributing to the city’ economic development. “Through this ordinance, the city will be able to invest in its people as it promotes proficiency and enhances employability in the local labor market,” Cayabas said. The proposed ordinance has been referred to the city council’s Committee on Appropriations and Finance Cluster A for review.

SP/Jordan G. Habbiling

Amianan Balita Ngayon