The Regional Development Council (RDC) VIII conducted a Regional Forum on the Budget Calendar for FY 2023 on 21 January 2022.

The activity was designed to orient agency regional offices (AROs), government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs), and state universities and colleges (SUCs) on the FY 2023 budget preparation and review process, highlighting the newly-approved RDC VIII budget guidelines for FY 2023.

In September of last year, the budget guidelines were approved by the RDC VIII Full Council. Entitled, the RDC VIII Guidelines on the Preparation, Review, and Monitoring of Annual Agency Budget Proposals for Priority Programs and Projects for Eastern Visayas, the document aims to provide a comprehensive guide for the preparation and prioritization of government entities’ annual budgets.

“These particular guidelines now spell-out the various steps that needs to be complied with for an effective budget review of proposals. In particular, these guidelines adopt a prioritization criteria for the ranking of projects proposed by agencies and SUCs.” said NEDA Regional Director Atty. Bonifacio G. Uy.

Similar to last year, the FY 2023 budget review will utilize the RDC VIII Budget Review Drive, a cloud-based repository of budget proposals from the different AROs, GOCCs, and SUCs. The online drive is open to the public and can be viewed and commented on by development stakeholders at the national, regional and local level to ensure transparency and inclusivity of the FY2023 priority proposals.

The budget drive was upgraded by the RDC VIII Secretariat for FY 2023. A new centralized dashboard was introduced to improve ease of use of the online review facility. The new centralized dashboard will allow government entities and regional stakeholders to easily submit, facilitate objective RDC VIII technical review, and store documentation of the budget preparation, in real time.

NEDA VIII is optimistic that the changes will help facilitate and improve the budget preparation and review process.

“We hope that our meeting today will be productive and enable us to submit proposals that will be reviewed, endorsed, and submitted to the national government that are responsive and will lead to higher socioeconomic growth for the region for 2023 and onward.” said Dir. Uy.

Officials and staff from various agencies attended the orientation, including regional directors, managers, university presidents, and heads of GOCCs.

Under EO 325, s. 1996, the RDC VIII is given the responsibility of reviewing the annual budget proposals of government agencies to ensure that they address the strategic development needs and priorities of the region.

Article and Photos by: Knulp Aseo, DRD