Local government units (LGU) in the Philippines are mandated to enjoy local autonomy. This gives them something of a free hand in organizing their organizational structure, the better to serve their community be it province, city, municipality or barangay. As an independent city, GenSan and its LGU for the most part need only worry about addressing problems within the city itself, and finding ways to improve upon preparedness by local agencies in responding to emergencies.
It is in that spirit therefore, according to PageOne.PH, that LGU-GenSan saw fit to create a new city department, the Public Safety Office (PSO) which will have oversight on policies and initiatives pertaining to the preparedness of local agencies against disaster, and in responding to emergencies in a swift and efficient manner. Mayor Ronnel Rivera announced the creation of the PSO this Wednesday, February 3, as well as his appointment of Engr. Riza Paches to actively head the new office.
The general mandate of the GenSan PSO is to ensure safety and security for Generals in the city when disaster and calamity strikes. To achieve this, several existing agencies and functions are being integrated and harmonized under the new office for smoother operation of public services. They are: the City Transportation and Traffic Engineering Division, City Security Division, City Transportation and Traffic Management Division, City Disaster Risk and Reduction Management Office, and the Administrative Division.
City Councilor Jose Edmar Yumang pushed for the creation of the Public Safety Office for GenSan via Ordinance No. 1618, Series of 2017. With its creation, the PSO will become secretariat for the local Motorized Transport Franchising and Regulatory Board (MTFRB) and the CDRRMC. Thus they will regulate road usage, PUVs, enforce traffic regulations and manage private and public road vehicles, as well as protect and secure local government facilities. PSO acting head Paches notes that the office has already begun formulating plans for enhancing services of its new sub-offices.
Image from Philippine News Agency