SKs urged to utilize budget independently

In a statement, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is urging all Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) officials to start utilizing their respective budgets by following the Joint Memorandum Circular (JMC) issued by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM), DILG, and the National Youth Commission (NYC) last January 23.

The said JMC No. 1, series of 2019 provides guidelines on the appropriation, release, planning and budgeting process for the SK funds, which is 10% of the annual budget of every barangay.

In order to facilitate SK fund disbursement, Malaya advises all SK chairpersons to open a current back account in the name of the SK, preferably in a government-owned bank situated in or nearest to its area of jurisdiction.

“We strongly encourage the SK to open and maintain a depository account in the same bank and branch of its barangay for efficiency and economy purposes,” he says.

The SK chairperson and SK treasurer, as the accountable officials, should likewise apply for fidelity bonding.

He says that the JMC provides the guide on the complete budget process for the SK, to include the budget execution phase or the disbursement of funds.

“We need not wait for the COA guidelines because COA has given the SK the go signal to use their funds in accordance with the JMC which in itself details the procedures on how they can disburse their respective budgets. Any COA requirements to be issued outside of the JMC will be applied prospectively,” DILG Undersecretary and Spokesperson Jonathan E. Malaya said.

The SK Reform Act mandates that 10 percent of the general fund of barangays shall be set aside for the SK, which shall be appropriated in lump sum and distributed solely for youth development and empowerment purposes. The law further states that the SK shall have financial independence in its operations, disbursements and encashment of their fund, income and expenditures.