Creation of Baguio culture, arts council proposed

The preservation and promotion of culture and arts in the city got an added boost following the filing of a proposed ordinance creating the Baguio City Culture and the Arts Council in support of the plan of the National Commission on Culture and the Arts (NCCA) and the Cordillera Regional Development Council (RDC-CAR) to establish said councils to allow access to financial and technical assistance from the Commission.

Councilor Lilia A. Farinas underscored the purposes of the creation of the Baguio City Culture and Arts Council, which include the advancement of efforts of concerned government agencies and local governments for the sustainable preservation and protection of the rich culture, heritage, arts and traditions of the city and its people; qualify and comply with the criteria of local governments for the coveted Seal of Good Local Governance in coordination with the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and to allow the city to have access to both financial and technical assistance that the NCCA has to offer.

Under the proposal, the Baguio City Culture and the Arts Council shall be composed of the City Mayor as chairperson and that its membership shall be composed of a representative from the NCCA, a DILG representative, chairperson of the City Council Tourism, Special Events, Parks and Playgrounds, the chairperson of the City Council Committee of Education, Culture and Historical Research, City Environment and Parks Management Officer, City Administrator, Supervising tourism Operations Officer and other concerned and interested offices and agencies.

The local lady legislator is proposing the appropriation of P100,000 from the city’s general funds for the effective and efficient implementation of the measure.

Fariñas explained the Cordillera is a region whose unique culture and heritage must be preserved and protected and in order to sustain such quality is to transfer the cultural practices, customs and traditions to the present and future generations for them to observe and aggressively promote.

Earlier, the NCCA leadership called on all local governments in the country to create their local councils for culture and arts to help preserve and protect the rich culture and heritage of not only the Cordillerans but also in various parts of the country where indigenous peoples are dominant.

The NCCA added that the compliance of local governments to the creation of their respective local council for culture and arts will be one of the criteria that will be included by the DILG in judging local governments for their compliance to the coveted Seal of Good Local governance this year and the succeeding years.

According to her, the putting up of local councils for culture and arts will definitely help the national government complete the local registry of cultural properties among others to help decision makers in deciding what to preserve and protect by either marking the said important properties as historical landmarks, historical sites or national treasures.

The RDC-CAR also joined the call for the compliance of the local governments in the creation of the local culture and arts council by initiating the needed consultations among local officials on how to go about the put up of the council in their areas of jurisdiction. - Dexter A. See