Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Friday, May 15, 2009

Olongapo mayor: Guam can take a cue from our city's experience

Olongapo City Mayor James Gordon Jr. says Guam can take a cue from the experience the province of Zambales went through in terms of hosting a U.S. military base.

Gordon is one of eight mayors from four provinces in the Philippines who are attending the Second Annual Pacific Mayors' Conference being held at the Hibiscus Hall of Fiesta Resort and Spa.

“We would like to take a major part in this effort because we can share our knowledge in what kind of jobs are needed,” said Gordon.

He said Olongapo City would be ready for any kind of jobs.

“In fact, we just created the Task Force Guam and we will have about 8,000 manpower that will be available,' he said.

Gordon said that both areas would benefit from these cooperative efforts, including exchanges in other forms like in areas of marine life.

“We can learn from them on how they will manage their clean waters and beaches,” he said.

Gordon said efforts to make the waters and beaches in Olongapo and the whole province of Zambales clean has been on top of their priorities, especially with the increasing volume of tourism.

Another mayor from Zambales who is present for the conference is Wilma Billman of Castillejos town.

Mayors from the province of Batangas are Eulalio Alilio of Lemery, Marissa Reyes of Balete, Michael Montenegro of Taal, and Epifanio Sandoval of San Nicolas.

Sandoval and Montenegro said they are here to promote the eco-tourism industries in their municipalities. Both also attended the first conference in Guam last year.

“Our town is the heart of tourism in Batangas. Right now we just opened a state school that offers courses in construction, welding maintenance and electrical technology. With this we can provide employment for our people,” Sandoval said.

He said both Taal and San Nicolas towns can participate in an exchange program with Guam, especially for the upcoming military buildup.

The vice mayor of San Pedro, Laguna, also arrived with the total of 12 delegates, including some councilors.

Another mayor arriving today from Hagonoy, Bulacan, is Donato Marcos.

This would bring the total delegation from the Philippines to 30, including six from Batangas, eight from Bulacan, four from Zambales and 12 from Laguna.

The largest U.S. naval military base outside the U.S. mainland was formerly located in Subic Bay but it was phased out in 1991 after the Philippine Senate rejected to extend the 1947 military bases agreement.

The eruption of Mt. Pinatubo, also in 1991, left the naval facility in ruins, along with the Clark Air Base in Angeles, Pampanga.

Both have been converted to the Clark Freeport and Subic Bay Freeport that now employ over 100,000 workers. By Nazario Rodriguez Jr. - Saipan Tribune

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  • well its about time, no tourist wants to come look, swim, or scuba with trash in the water....

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/16/2009 8:49 AM  

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