The BLISTT Governing Council, headed by its Chairman, Baguio City Mayor Mauricio Domogan, met on April 19, 2018 in Baguio City to discuss and agree on the Council’s recommendations on the proposed Senate Bill No. 1692. The said bill pushes for the creation of the Baguio, La Trinidad, Itogon, Sablan, Tuba and Tublay Development Authority (BLISTTDA).
Together with Mayor Domogan, present during the meeting were Mayor Romeo Salda of La Trinidad, Mayor Victorio Palangdan of Itogon, Mayor Ignacio Rivera of Tuba, and Mayor Armando Lauro of Tublay.
The Council agreed on the following recommendations which were immediately submitted to the Senate for consideration: (1) inclusion of provisions that will clearly define and delineate the functions and responsibilities of the BLISTTDA vis-à-vis the BLISTT LGUs; (2) selection of the BLISTTDA Chairman to be chosen by the BLISTT mayors from among themselves; and (3) assignment of a career-service eligible Administrator who, together with his/her staff, shall be responsible for the coordination and monitoring of the BLISTT programs and projects. The Council also tasked NEDA-CAR, the Council’s Secretariat, to submit an estimate of the initial annual operational cost of BLISTTDA .
Senate Bill 1692, filed by Senator Ralph Recto on Feb. 13, 2018 was referred to the Committees on Government Corporations and Public Enterprises, Economic Affairs, and Finance for further review. A similar bill, HB 6974, was approved by the House of Congress on the third and final reading. Filed by Baguio City Congressman Marquez Go and other Congressmen, the bill pushed for the creation of the BLISTTDA to hasten social, economic and political development in the BLISTT area through unified, effective, and economically efficient programs and undertakings.
The BLISTT area, one of the two identified regional growth centers of the Cordillera Region, is recognized as the commercial and service center and interim government center of the region, pending the creation of an autonomous region in the Cordillera.