Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Thursday, December 31, 2009


The promotion of livelihood for Olongapeños is one of the projects that Mayor James “Bong” Gordon, Jr. focuses on as part of his “HELPS Program,” the letter L standing for Livelihood and labor.

With the full support of First Lady and Zambales Vice Gov. Anne Marie Gordon, Mayor Bong Gordon wants to strengthen ‘self-employment’ and address both unemployment and underemployment, thus the creation of the Livelihood Cooperative Development Office (LCDO).

The projects of the LCDO includes the ‘Gawang Gapo Product Exhibit’. ‘Gawang Gapo’ provides budding entrepreneurs the opportunity to display and sell their products at the lobby of the City Hall. In 2009, over sixty (60) exhibitors availed of the chance to showcase their products.

Also, over one thousand (1,000) residents benefitted from the Livelihood Skills Training given by the LCDO like fish processing, fruit preserves making, herbal soap-making, balloon decorating, scented candle making, fashion accessories making and many others.

“Huwag lamang tayong umasa na maging empleyado sa mahabang panahon. Kailangan na tayo ang mag may-ari ng negosyo. “Kahit magsimula muna sa maliit na puhunan lamang,’’ Mayor Gordon said to the employees of the local government.

Meanwhile, First Lady Anne Marie Gordon herself directs and monitors the implementation of the livelihood and self-employment initiatives of Mayor Gordon to ensure success.

“Karaniwan sa mga dumadalo sa aming mga trainings ay ang mga maybahay, asawa ng mga OFWs at mga walang trabaho,” LCDO head Aileen Sanchez said. “Hindi lang basta skills ang itinuturo namin kundi pati mga tagubilin sa aspetong administrasyon, operational at pinansyal ng pagne-negosyo,” she said.

Apart from the skills seminars, the local government also assists Olongapeños coordinate with banks and other financial institutions for the capital they need to start up a business.

Mayor Gordon’s livelihood initiatives is expected to continue on through 2010 and thereafter.

Mayor Bong Gordon delivers a message to the participants of the ‘Specialized Training and Seminars for Gawang ‘Gapo Entrepreneurs’ held at the Livelihood Training Center, Brgy. Kalaklan. (Photo/Caption Courtesy of PAO)


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Gordon's Free Patent bill OK’d

CONGRESS has ratified the Free Patent bill which would allow 39 million Filipinos, mostly low-and-middle income individuals, to legally obtain title to the lands they have been possessing for at least 10 years now.

Sen. Richard Gordon, author of Senate Bill 3429 or an Act Reforming the Administrative Titling Process, said the measure will ease the requirements and procedures in the titling of residential and commercial land.

“Many landowners, despite possession of their land, have only rights or tax declaration due to the high cost, long delay and inconvenient procedures of judicial titling,” he said.

Under the present law, residential and commercial landholders can acquire a title only through the court, which would entail hiring of a lawyer, paying for a survey, securing testimonies from neighbors, clearances from the barangay and filing of a court petition, among others.

Gordon said this situation, where many land parcels remain untitled, make for bad economics because landowners cannot secure loans using their property for business and home improvement.

“Without a title, landowners will not be secure in their possession, becoming victims of illegally issued land titles by criminal syndicates,” he said, adding that the Chamber of Thrift Banks and the Makati Business Club have been anticipating the enactment of the Free Patent Act which is seen to benefit the economy.

“This measure is expected to stimulate bank lending with better collateral, allowing homeowners’ access to credit in banking institutions,” said Pascual Garcia III, president of CTB, in his letter to Gordon.

Alberto Lim, MBC executive director, said titled land has more value than untitled land. This will increase the local government’s tax base.

“Aside from more business tax, there will also be more legitimate property transactions so the take from transfer fees, documentary stamps, and capital gains taxes will increase,” he said. By: Bernadette E. Tamayo - Peoples Journal

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P260M lost in Iba public-market fire

IBA, Zambales—Fire of suspicious origin razed the building housing this capital town’s public market on Tuesday night, destroying some P260 million in properties and merchandise.

The blaze, which reportedly started in three locations within the building, quickly engulfed the two-story steel-and-concrete structure that was built in 1986, witnesses said.

The “slow reaction” of local firefighters, who reportedly deployed an empty water truck to the fire scene, made matters worse for more than 200 stall owners occupying the public market.

“In a matter of 15 minutes, the market was totally consumed by fire,” said public prosecutor Adhebert Deloso, son of Gov. Amor Deloso, who was then attending a late Christmas party about 300 meters from the market.

“The Iba fire truck arrived at about 9 p.m., but [the water tank] was empty,” he said, quoting investigation reports.

“The fire was only contained hours later when fire fighters from the NETC [Naval Education and Training Command], the PMMA ?[Philippine Merchant Marine Academy] and the SBMA [Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority] arrived,” Deloso added.

“Without help from the NETC, PMMA and SBMA, the fire could have spread to the nearby residential areas in barangay Zone 1.”

Deloso said that there are “strong indications that it was a case of arson,” citing reports that days before the fire, there were already rumors that the market would be burned down.

He said it was “unbelievable” that an unattended cooking fire in one of the stalls caused the blaze.

According to Hernan Moises, owner of a shoe store in the public market, several fires seemed to have started all at once just before 9 p.m. on Tuesday.

“We’re already here at about 9 o’clock and there was one fire at the first floor there,” Moises said, pointing to the western side of the market.

“There was another at the dry- goods area in the middle of the building,” he added.

The simultaneous fire scenario was also confirmed by at least two other stallholders who asked not to be named.

According to Hernan Cortez, chairman of barangay Lipay Dingin and one of the local officials who first responded to the emergency call, most of the merchandise lost in the blaze were intended for New Year.

“They have already stocked on chicken, cold cuts and other foodstuffs for the Media Noche [the traditional New Year’s Eve dinner celebrated by most Filipino households],” Cortez said.

Lina Bernan, who sold ladies’ accessories at the dry-goods section of the market, said she lost some P500,000 in inventories.

A rice dealer, meanwhile, lost some P7 million in the blaze, Deloso said.

Deloso, who is running for mayor of Iba town in the coming May 2010 polls, said that traders who lost their livelihood in the fire “should be given soft loans for them to start anew.”

He added that the legal question on the 5,000-square-meter lot where the public market is located should be settled as early as possible.

He said that while the Iba municipal government owned the market building, the land is being claimed by the Garcia family, who reportedly owns large landholdings in Zambales.

Recently, the municipal government lost the case to the Garcias, leaving the public market a virtual squatter in the area.

Deloso said that to resolve the issue, the government should decide to either relocate the market to another area or expropriate the land from the Garcia family. Written by Henry Empeño Business Mirror Correspondent

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Ecaruan, Labay top Gapo chessfest

Mario Ecaruan and Rainier Labay nabbed the top places in the recently concluded 8th anniversary of g4 Chess Club Semi-Standard and Blitz Time Control Chess on Tuesday in Olongapo City.

Ecaruan, Roel Abelgas and Paolo Cortez finished in a three-way tie for first with 6.0 points, but the Ecaruan took home the Semi-Standard title owing to higher tie break points.

The event hosted by China-based Joel Pineda and National Chess Federation of the Philippines director lawyer Edmundo Legaspi.

Adjudged category winners were Judith Pineda (top women), Jeff Sampang (top local player), Jack Mapano and Ferdinand Onato (top senior), Eddie Lumanog and John Ranel Morazo(top collge), Ferdinand Aviles (top high school), Darwin Lorenzo (top elementary boys) and CJ Villanueva (top elementary girls).

Journeyman Rainier Labay, meantime, tallied 10.5 points to capture the Blitz division. John Ranel Morazo took the second place with 10.0 points followed by third place Venancio Go with 9.5 points.

La Salle Greenhills top player Jan Nigel Galan won the top junior award while Heirry Manaloto and Joshua Bautista shared the top kiddies honor. -- by Marlon Bernardino. abs-cbnNEWS.com

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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Inroads in 2009: Health, Housing, Education and Environment

As part of Mayor James “Bong” Gordon Jr.’ s HELPS program, the city government has prioritized health, housing and projects for education as it has always been for the past several years.

Part of the Health initiatives of Mayor Gordon include the establishment of six (6) health centers that provide Basic Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care (BEmONC) services at Barangay New Cabalan, Gordon Heights, West Bajac-Bajac, Barretto, New Kababae at Kalaklan. Also, five (5) Philhealth-Accredited health centers now offer out-patient benefit package at New Cabalan, Gordon Heights, West Bajac-Bajac, Sta. Rita and Barretto. Out-patient benefit package includes free consultation, dental check-up, family planning, immunization, laboratory tests and pre-natal care.

Moreover, thru the support of Olongapo First Lady and Zambales Vice-Governor Anne Marie Gordon, Philhealth beneficiaries increased to 127% while the City Health Office reported a successful decrease in Malnutrition Prevalence Rate in children aged 0-5 years old. Tuberculosis cases also declined from 156 in 2009 compared to 166 in 2008. Likewise, animal bite cases dropped from 532 in 2008 to 369 in 2009.

Accordingly, family planning methods (FPM) are now gradually being accepted as 27, 645 individuals were recorded by the City Population Office using FPM.

Improvements at James L. Gordon Memorial Hospital have also been implemented from 2007 to 2009. JLGMH has procured a brand new Ct-Scan Machine with 3D image display function capability and since it has been set-up, the hospital has performed 3,810 examinations. Additional equipment like EGD machine, anesthesia machine, operating table, dermatone, laparoscopic TV camera & video system, UES-40 electrocautery machine, electrohydraulic lithotripsy, choledochofiberscope, video telescope, hand surgery set, basic cardio vascular set, femur bone instrument set, basic forearm instrument set, orthopedic instrument set, urelithotomy set, uterine evacuation set, caesarian section set, abdominal gynecological operation set, dilatation and curettage set, major rectal instrument set, skin graft set, radical mastectomy set, thyroidectomy set, gastro intestinal set, abdominal perineal resections set, colpotomy set, epiotomy or laceration repair set, patient monitor, incubators and autoclave machines were also procured for the development of JLGMH. Thru these equipment, the Operating Room ng JLGMH has performed 10,900 surgical procedures and 51% of these are charity or service cases.

Mayor Gordon has also prioritized the computerization of JLGMH financial systems to ensure the automation of all transactions for fast and accurate billing, reports and delivery of services.

Accordingly, in line with his mission to provide decent but affordable housing units to Olongapeños, Mayor Gordon has initiated the construction of the Bonggapo Homes, with 13o units, many of which have already been turned-over to the first batch of homeowners last November 20, 2009.

In the sector of education, the city supports 422 college scholars, 241 high school scholars and 265 elementary scholars. Moreover, thru Gordon College, the city offers quality but affordable college education. In fact, the said college’s passing rate at the Nursing Licensure Examination increased this year from 56% in 2008 to 65% in 2009. Gordon College also boasts for its 100% passing rate at the Licensure Examination for Teachers and 78% passing rate at the Licensure Examination for Midwives given in 2009. Likewise, Gordon College has also undergone physical improvements such as the rehabilitation of the main building, construction of NSTP building, procurement of 60 computer units for the computer laboratories, rehabilitation of Hotel and Restaurant Management Laboratory and the setting-up of computer units with internet system at the library.

In connection with the over-all condition of education in the city, completion rate at the elementary level increased in 2009 at 103.65 while the repetition rate declined from 1.65 in 2008 to .12 in 2009. On the other hand, graduation rate increased from 96.30 in 2007-2008 to 97.37 in 2008-09 while the drop-out rate in the secondary level decreased from 8.14 to 7.4 in 2009 and as confirmation to the advancing quality of education in the city, Eva Imingan of Nellie Brown Elementary School has been cited as one of the 2009 Ten Most Outstanding Teachers in the country by the Metrobank Foundation for exemplary contribution to education.

Thru the CR3 (Compost, Reduce, Recycle and Re-use) Program, wastes generated by the city decreased at an average of 1o tons per day, from 100-99 tons per day in 2007- 2008 to 90 tons/day in 2009.

“The Olongapo City Government has vigorously campaigned for the C3 or Compost, Reduce, Re-Use and Recycle campaign to manage the city’s waste,” said Mayor James “Bong” Gordon Jr. “ If we segregate our wastes, we are not only helping to keep the city clean and healthy but more importantly, we are in one way or another, fighting climate change. Southeast Asian countries are beginning to feel the effects of climate change. In recent months, the Philippines has been hit by succeeding fierce typhoons, same with Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos and the devastations caused by these typhoons are distressing. So in our own little ways, let us help rehabilitate our environment and I am appealing to all Olongapeños to make waste segregation a habit,” said Mayor Gordon.

Thousands of standardized and sturdy garbage bins have also been placed at assigned areas in the 17 barangays for a litter-free waste collection system, safe from stray animals and scavengers.

Moreover, the city government has also recognized the importance of Wildlife Preservation programs thru the implementation of conservation projects for threatened species and thru the monitoring of wildlife farm permit holders. Due to these programs, Olongapo is home to the following wildlife species: Philippine Monkey, Monitor Lizard, Philippine turtle, Wild pigs, Philippine Scops Owl, Philippine Cobra, Philippine Deer, Serpent Eagle, Philippine Reticulated Phyton, Ordinary Parakeet, Dove, Maya, Brahminy Kite, Egret and Sparrows. Accordingly, the city is also conducting coastal marine resources management thru the proper care of mangrove, establishment of marine sanctuaries, tagging and releasing of marine turtles and coastal clean-ups.


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Sunday, December 27, 2009

SBMA seen to post record income

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT , Philippines – The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) seaport racked up bigger monthly earnings this year and is expected to post a record income at the end of the year.

SBMA officials said that Subic seaport earnings in the last 11 months already stood at P449.15 million, which is about 78 percent more than last year’s P252.63 million profit.

“This not only breached our seaport revenue target for the current year, but has also surpassed year-on-year figures since 1992 when the Subic Bay Freeport was created,” said SBMA administrator and chief executive Armand Arreza.

“This is really unprecedented,” he added. “This is one record that would be hard to beat even in the next few years.”

Latest available data show that the surge in seaport income started in January this year when it earned P37.6 million, or 167 percent more than the P14.07-million earnings in January 2008.

The positive growth continued all through the following months, with comparative figures rising 165 percent in February, 209 percent in March, 101 percent in April, and 168 percent in June.

As of November, this year’s seaport income already exceeded the January-November 2008 income by P196.5 million, said Arreza.

The seaport income is derived from vessel and cargo charges, leases and rentals, processing fees, SBMA shares from joint ventures, and other billings for port users.

Arreza also pointed out that Subic seaport’s revenue generation consistently began posting increases in the last four years, rising from P181.09 million in 2005, to P190.88 million in 2006, P221.39 million in 2007, and P276.24 million in 2008.

The rebound began, Arreza noted, after seaport income dipped in 2005 by 20.39 percent, compared to the P227.46 million recorded in 2004.

“Since then, seaport operations picked up, especially this year when the global recession turned out to be an opportunity for the Subic port,” Arreza told The STAR. “In the first six months of 2009 alone, seaport revenue already exceeded the previous year’s 12-month performance,” he added.

Arreza said the rise in seaport income could be attributed to the operation of Subic’s New Container Terminal 1 (NCT-1) by the Subic Bay International Terminal Corp. (SBITC), as well as income from vessel lay-ups and wharfage fees for petroleum products, fertilizer, and grains like soya and wheat.

He also said the positive performance stemmed from SBMA efforts to aggressively market the Subic port and attract more shippers, importers, brokers and forwarders to Subic.

Under the SBMA’s marketing program, the agency’s seaport department posted a whopping revenue of P60.7 million in June, the highest in the 11-month period, as well as a P51-million collection in March.

Arreza likewise noted that the SBMA Seaport Department’s 11-month revenue has exceeded its 12-month revenue forecast of P316.3 million by P133 million or 52 percent.

Arreza added that since the seaport’s average monthly income now stood at P40.8 million, it would be safe to assume that the 2009 revenue total for the Subic seaport would reach P490 million.

The estimated yearend earnings would exceed the revenue forecast of P316.3 million by about 55 percent. By Bebot Sison Jr. (The Philippine Star)

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Deloso unfazed by Magsaysay and Ebdane team up

IBA, Zambales—Governor Amor Deloso has welcomed the alliance between two powerful politicians who are contesting his reelection bid in the gubernatorial seat.

"The team-up of former public works and hghways secretary Hermogenes Ebdane and former Zambales governor Vicente Magsaysay has made my reelection bid a bit harder than before," Deloso said.

But Deloso said he is confident that the people of Zambales would reelect him as governor for another term, adding that his years of service will hinder Ebdane's plans to become governor.

Unfazed by the team-up of Magsaysay and Ebdane, Deloso reiterated that the people would still look for a leader who is approachable and light-hearted.

He also said that even if eight of the mayors of Zambales have expressed their support for Ebdane, he has shown that he can win the position despite him only having one mayor in the whole of Zambales supporting him.

In the past election, Deloso won over Magsaysay who has the support of almost all the mayors in Zambales except one. "That was a classic fight. I won over him without any support from most of the mayors in Zambales," he said.

Deloso said that such political leaders can be bought but not family friends, reiterating that his grassroots method is to ensure that every family head here in Zambales is his friend.

He added that the value of money is not how much you can spend for everything you want, but what you have when you need it most. By JONAS REYES - Manila Bulletin

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Friday, December 25, 2009

Subic seaport 2009 income to top P490M

SUBIC FREEPORT, Olongapo—The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) said on Wednesday it expects to close the year with a P490-million income from seaport operations. This marks a record for the seaport department since 1992, the year when the Subic Bay freeport was established.

SBMA Administrator Armand Arreza said Subic seaport’s earnings from January to November this year already stood at P449.15 million, or about 78 percent more than last year’s total of P252.63 million for the same 11-month period.

With the SBMA seaport department now earning an average of P40.8 million monthly, the 2009 seaport revenue total could easily reach P490 million, Arreza said.

Describing the record surge in seaport income as “unprecedented,” Arreza said this year’s earnings not only breached the agency’s revenue target for 2009, but also surpassed year-on-year figures for the last 16 years.

“This is one record that would be hard to beat even in the next few years,” Arreza added.

Vessel and cargo charges, leases and rentals, processing fees, SBMA shares from joint ventures, and other billings for port users make up the revenue sources in seaport operations here.

Figures released by the SBMA showed that the surge in seaport income started in January this year when it earned P37.6 million, or 167 percent more than the P14.07-million earnings in January 2008.

The positive growth continued all through the following months, with comparative figures rising by 165 percent in February, 209 percent in March, 101 percent in April, and 168 percent in June.

By November this year, total seaport income already exceeded the January-November 2008 income by P196.5 million, said Arreza.

According to SBMA seaport manager Federico Pascual, the Subic seaport has been consistently posting increases in the last four years, recording an income of P181.09 million in 2005, P190.88 million in 2006, P221.39 million in 2007 and P276.24 million in 2008.

Pascual said the rebound began after 2005, when the seaport’s income dipped by 20.39 percent, compared the P227.46 million earned in 2004.

“Since then, seaport operations picked up, especially this year, when the global recession turned out to be an opportunity for the Subic port,” Pascual said.

“In the first six months of 2009 alone, seaport revenue already exceeded the previous year’s 12-month performance,” he added.

Pascual traced the increase in seaport income mainly to the operation of Subic’s New Container Terminal 1 by the Subic Bay International Terminal Corp., as well as to income from vessel lay-ups and wharfage fees for petroleum products, fertilizer and grain imports.

He also said SBMA efforts to aggressively market the Subic port attracted more shippers, importers, brokers and forwarders that brought in increased income.

He added that the SBMA marketing program resulted in a revenue of P60.7 million in June, the highest in the 11-month period, as well as a P51-million collection in March.

Because of the hefty earnings, the SBMA Seaport Department’s 11-month revenue has exceeded its 12-month revenue forecast of P316.3 million by P133 million, or 52 percent, Pascual said. Written by Henry Empeño - businessmirror.com.ph

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

SBMA treats poor folk, Aeta kids

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT -- Some 500 residents from poor families in Olongapo City received early Christmas treat during the “Pamaskong Handog” project launched recently by the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA).

Initiated by the offices of the chairman and the administrator, “Pamaskong Handog” aims to bring smiles and the spirit of Christmas to less fortunate residents, especially children, in the city.

“This is only a simple way of returning part of the blessings that the SBMA and the Freeport community have received this year,” said SBMA administrator Armand Arreza.

At the remote Aeta community of Mampweng in Bgy. New Cabalan, Olongapo City, 61 students from the local grade school were among those who enjoyed a Christmas party sponsored by the SBMA this year.

“Masaya po ang party namin, kasi po lahat kami ay nagsaya, nabusog at may regalo pang naiuwi,” said Paulo Jugatan, a Grade 1 pupil.

The SBMA Christmas outreach project also benefited more than 400 children and adults who received their Christmas gifts at the San Roque Chapel in Subic’s central business district.

The distribution of gifts was led by Mrs. Pat Arreza, wife of the SBMA administrator, and Rose Baldeo, head of the Global Terminals and Development Inc., a Subic investor.

Rev. Joven Descartin, tribal pastor of the Word of Hope Assembly of God church, who helped organized the Christmas outreach project, said the activity exemplifies the true meaning of Christmas -- that of giving life and hope to others.

“As we celebrate the joy of Christmas, let us then remember our less fortunate brothers and sisters, and share our love with them through giving gifts,” Descartin said. Ruben A. Veloria - Journal Online

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009


The intensified Barangay Consultations also dubbed as “Gordon Helps” was in Barangay Baretto recently with Mayor James “Bong” Gordon, Jr. and Olongapo City First Lady and Zambales Vice Gov. Anne Marie Gordon leading government officials in addressing the residents’ concerns.

Mayor Bong Gordon also reported in detail the city projects that were accomplished, still under construction and those that are set to be done in Brgy. Baretto and the whole of Olongapo.

First Lady Anne Marie also delivered a message that focused on the projects in Zambales and what she can do to serve the 1st District of Zambales better.

Other officials who also addressed the residents were Vice Mayor Cynthia Cajudo with City Councilors Gina Perez, Ellen Dabu, Rodel Cerezo, Nathan Manalo and City Consultants Bugsy delos Reyes, Tet Marzan, Ed Piano, Romy Guerrero and Edna Elane.

Meanwhile, residents of Brgy. Baretto took advantage of the services that were available for them like the medical check-up and the distribution of free medicines and vitamins by the City Health Office (CHO) doctors and medical personnel.

Public Utility Vehicle drivers, teachers and vendors enlisted to be able to receive Dental Health Cards that will give them and their families the privilege to avail of free dental health services. Some had tooth extraction here and there.

A lot of the residents lined up for the mini-jobs fair courtesy of the Public Employment Service Office (PESO) and the different skills training like livelihood, welding, computer, call center, housekeeping and German language were also a hit.

Over one hundred (100) individuals received Philhealth Indigency Cards. A lecture was given by the Population Commission (PopCom) and explained to Brgy. Baretto residents the importance and processes of family planning.

The said Gordon Helps was held at Purok 11 and 5 in Brgy. Baretto on December 21 to 22, 2009. The next will be on December 29, also in Brgy. Baretto but this time in Purok 7 and will continue to do rounds on January on the other barangays of Olongapo.


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Olongapo City Management Information Systems (MIS) department has launched Mayor James Gordon Jr.’s Social Networking site that includes facebook, twitter, friendster, myspace, multiply and hi5 accounts. These sites shall provide the public with Mayor Bong’s personal information, his interests, friends and others.

It also contains screenful of information such as texts, graphic images or even photographs, sound and video.

Being the leader of the city, the websites provide information of important announcements, news, programs and events in the city. It also offers a place where users can interact with Mayor Bong.

The website also contains the up-to-date events and activities happening in the city and features livelihood and skills trainings and, awards received by the city under his administration.

“Ang website ay magsisilbing information pathway para sa mga Olongapeño upang makapag-bigay ng update ng mga bagong pangyayari at mga importanteng datos tungkol sa lungsod. Malakas ang impact ng internet sa society at gagamitin natin ito upang maabot ang ating mga kababaya,” said Mayor Gordon.




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Saturday, December 19, 2009

Gordon Team consistently tops surveys

Olongapo City Mayor James "Bong" Gordon, Jr. consistently leads surveys conducted by both Pulse Asia, Olongapo-Subic News and Subic Times.
Online surveys of Olongapo-Subic News and SubicTimes had Gordon in front with 65% and 60% respectively. Magsaysay registered 23% and 30% while Bacay had 11% in both polls.

The said poll was consistent with the recent score of 60% given by Pulse Asia. In 2007 election, Pulse Asia was commissioned to conduct the same survey which provided an accurate result as proven by the outcome of May 10, 2007 election.

City council candidates who made good in Olongapo-Subic.com's poll are Cerezo, Piano, Cortez, Delos Reyes, Perez, Manalo, Marzan, Baloy and Dabu (listed according to rank).

Both Anne Gordon (congress) and Vice Mayor Cajudo bettered their opponents as per result of the poll.

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Young Zambales cop receives ‘Rizal’ award

OLONGAPO CITY – A young career police officer of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) was a recipient of the most prestigious “Jose Rizal Achievements Award” for being “Most Outstanding Police Officer” of the year.

It was learned that Chief Insp. Rogelio Penones, Zambales CIDG provincial officer, was the first ever CIDG officer to receive such a prestigious award.

Penones is a graduate of the elite Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA) Class 1995.

The “Bantayog Award” was personally handed by Bishop Ricardo D. Bello here.

Aside from this special award, Penones was also a recipient of the Humanitarian International Record award that was handed down by Social Welfare and Development Secretary Esperanza Cabral during a ceremony held recently at the Manila Pavilion Hotel in Manila.

As this developed, even Penones’ immediate superior, Sr. Supt. Marvin V. Bolabola, regional officer of CIDG, was impressed by the unequalled accomplishments, devotion to duty, public service and loyalty to the command of the young officer.

“Major Penones deserves to receive such awards due to his outstanding accomplishments and dedication to the service,” said Bolabola, himself a recipient for various national awards for being a most outstanding police colonel.

It was also learned that Penones had the habit of leading personally risky missions. By MAR T. SUPNAD - Manila Bulletin

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No private armies in Zambales – Gov. Deloso

IBA, ZAMBALES – “I never had a private army in my life and I never will.”

This was the statement made by Zambales Governor Amor Deloso after news reports surfaced that the provincial chief has at least 40 armed men with high-powered rifles.

“There is no truth in the demolition job that my opponents are telling the media. What I do have is nine regular policemen who are part of my contingents,” Deloso added.

“You only develop private armies if you do illegal works,” he said.

According to reports from national dailies, particularly tabloids, Deloso’s name is synonymous to the Ampatuan’s of Maguindanao.

The reports stated that Deloso has been creating his own dynasty in Zambales and will be using his influence on family members to protect their alleged “illegal” mining businesses.

“Let them trace my so-called private army so they would know the truth. I have nothing to hide and I am the most approachable official in Zambales,” Deloso said.

Deloso said that this latest hit by his enemies is just part of a smear campaign.

He also reiterated that it wasn’t their family that started the political dynasty in Zambales, pointing out that the Magsaysays during their heydays held several positions in the country including the highest position, the presidency.

“Why now? Why our family?” he asked.

The governor also pointed out that Jury Deloso is certainly not his running mate but Saturnino Bactad, adding that his nephew Jury is actually the running mate of former Public Works and Highways secretary Hermogenes Ebdane Jr.

“I have not led this province through fear but more of love and compassion, heck, I’m the only governor whom you can joke and ask favors for!” Deloso jokingly said.

The governor has been casual with the allegations being hurled at him, stating that this is just the first round of the election bout here in Zambales.

Deloso said the recent barrage of allegations being thrown at the governor is part of a machination to smear him. By JONAS REYES - Manila Bulletin

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Friday, December 18, 2009


Ma. Arcelyn Niro of West Bajac-Bajac is the 2009 City Fiesta Queen. Thus declared by Olongapo City First Lady and Zambales Vice Gov. Anne Marie Gordon after the 3rd and last canvassing on December 16, 2009 at the Rizal Triangle Covered Court.

Out of the seventeen (17) candidates who joined the Search for City Fiesta Queen, Maria Arcelyn of West Bajac-Bajac won the search with a total amount of P120,127.00 raised after the 1st, 2nd and 3rd canvassing.

She was also awarded the Ms. International Night which was the theme for the night. The venue was filled with colorful and elegant costumes worn by the candidates, barangay officials and other guests.

The crowned City Fiesta Queen, Ma. Arcelyn or “Duday” to her family and friends is an 18 year-old college student who dreams of becoming an executive chef someday.

Mayor James “Bong” Gordon, Jr. and 2009 City Fiesta Executive Committee Chair Anne Marie assisted by the officials of Brgy. West Bajac-Bajac crowned the new queen.

Here is the overall tally of the Search for the City Fiesta Queen:

After the three (3) rounds of canvass, a total amount of P 1,208,134.70 was raised. The said amount will be used to support the Philippine Indigency Program, Livelihood Assistance Program and Scholarship Program of the local government headed by Mayor Gordon.

All the 17 candidates will be crowned on December 23, 2009 at the Rizal Triangle Multi-Purpose Center with Filipiniana Night as theme.
Mayor Bong Gordon and Olongapo City First Lady and Zambales Vice Gov. Anne Marie Gordon with 2009 Search for the City Fiesta Queen winner and Miss International Night Maria Arcelyn Niro of Brgy. West Bajac-Bajac. The 3rd and last canvassing was held on December 16, 2009 at Rizal Triangle Multi-Purpose Center. (Photo/Caption Courtesy of PAO)

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Vice-Governor Anne Marie Gordon Exceeds Expectations

As First Lady of Olongapo, Anne Marie Gordon has proven her compassion and sincerity to reach out to the indigent and the underprivileged and as Presiding Officer of the Provincial Board of Zambales, Anne Marie Gordon has exceeded the expectations of her contemporaries and constituents.

Together with her husband Mayor James” Bong” Gordon Jr., she has become the people’s champion when it comes to the provision of supplemental social, health care, livelihood and educational assistance beyond the available services that the city provides.

As Presiding Officer of the Provincial Board, Vice-Governor Anne has passed 422 legislative measures in 2008 alone to address various concerns of the province focusing on economic and infrastructure development, responsive bureaucracy, preservation of the environment, socio-cultural development, health and family welfare and agriculture progress.

As genuine advocate of human rights, Anne is responsible, along with Mayor Bong Gordon, for the establishment of Center for Women , a safe haven that provided refuge to battered and abused women in the city wherein they are given temporary shelter, appropriate counseling and moral support, and are taught to be self-reliant until the time they find their feet to rise up from their condition.

Every day, First Lady Anne Marie receives and attends to request of healthcare assistance from discounts and promissory notes on hospital bills, medicines, request for wheelchairs, stainless braces and aid for burial expenses. Not only Olongapeño patients seek for her assistance at James L. Gordon Hospital but also residents from Zambales where she has been serving as Vice-Governor.

Patient statistics at the James L. Gordon Memorial hospital now shows that the number of admitted and out-patients coming from Zambales increased dramatically since First Lady Anne Marie was elected as Vice-Governor of Zambales.

The First Lady also make sure that the underprivileged are given the necessary health assistance every year thru the provision of Philhealth Indigent cards which deserving individuals can use in times of medical emergency.

Under the leadership of Vice-Governor Anne Marie as Presiding Officer, the Provincial Council has approved the budget appropriating the procurement of hospital equipment such as x-ray machines, infant ventilators, CT scan machine, new ambulance vehicles, plasma separator, incubator, dialysis machines, mammography machines, cardiac monitors and other hospital equipment for RMM Hospital, Candeleria District and San Marcelino District Hospital in Zambales.

Olongapo First Lady and Zambales Vice-Governor Anne Marie, a supportive wife, devotee of the disadvantaged, a competent leader and most of all, an extraordinary woman. Pao/sara

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Foreign investments in Subic drop

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT — Despite the noticeable drop in Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs), around $44.42 million or more than P2 billion worth of investments were still generated inside this premier Freeport for the months of October and November.

The two-month accumulated investments resulted in a cumulative total of some $166.64 million.

According to the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA), a total of some $23.1 million were committed by 12 investing corporations in October while 22 other companies also invested some $21.32 million last month here.

The biggest investor, real estate developer Ayala Land, Inc., pledged more than $21.4 million for the erection, including the operation of a shopping mall here. By JONAS REYES - Manila Bulletin

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A Volunteer Forever

For 47 years now and as the current chairman and CEO of the Philippine National Red Cross (PNRC), Sen. Dick Gordon and his able people are very active in the disaster rescue, relief, and rehabilitation efforts.

He was there in the July 16, 1990 killer quake that hit the Luzon provinces; the June 15, 1991 Mt. Pinatubo eruption, and typhoons, the latest being typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng last September.

He also negotiated (without ransom paid), for the release of 18 Filipino hostages from the Abu Sayyaf in in March 2000; the May 2001 Dos Palmas, Palawan kidnapping; the OFWs in Southern Lebanon caught in the Hezbollah-Israeli conflict in August 2006, and in March 2009, led a prayer rally and appealed for the successful release of International Red Cross volunteers abducted in Sulu.

“Dati, ang ganda ng Sulu. Ngayon, mas mahirap pa sa daga. Bakit, niyayakap ba natin ang mga Muslim? Takot kayo sa Muslim, eh. Ako lang ang tangang lumalapit sa kanila. Ako lang nakakakuha ng hostages from them ng walang bayad. Ngayon naghahanap ako ng koneksyon para mapalaya `yung pari (Fr. Michael Sinnott) at `yung anak ng kaklase ko na arkitekto. Kailangan bang mangyari ito? No. Pagawa mo ang mga infrastructure roon. Bakit hindi sila magrerebelde? Kung ako nakatira roon magrerebelde ako,” Sen. Gordon points out.

He also mobilized aid for the February 2004 Superferry fire; the 2006 Ultra stampede of the Wowowee anniversary show; the October 2007 Glorietta blast; the June 2008 MV Princess of the Stars tragedy, and provided psychosocial and first aid assistance and transported home the survivors of Superferry 9 tragedy last June.

Sen. Gordon also appealed to the international communities for support to PNRC. He launched the Millenium Partner fund in February 2000 wherein corporate donations were pooled to sustain disaster relief and rehabilitation efforts. Currently, it already raised P27 million in funds. It was during his term as PNRC Chairman and CEO that, for the first time, the organization became an international donor when they gave $35,000 cash contribution and disaster experts to help in the relief and rehabilitation of tsunami-stricken areas in Indonesia, Thailand, and Sri Lanka.

In 2006, he launched the Project 143 I Love Red Cross on International Volunteers Day to prepare and train communities to be self-reliant and ready in the face of calamities and typhoons. Also, a total of 15,000 houses were repaired and built from 2004 to 2008 in

Albay, Aurora, Camarines Sur, Catanduanes, Isabela, Nueva Ecija, Laguna, Marinduque, Mindoro Oriental, Lanao del Norte, Southern Leyte, Quezon, Quirino, Sorsogon devastated by Guinsaugon landslide, typhoons Milenyo, Reming, Yoyong, Violeta, and Unding, and armed conflict in Mindanao.

During the 62nd anniversary of PNRC, Sen. Gordon distributed 62 ambulances and fire trucks to their chapters, in line with his dream of modernizing and strengthening PNRC’s rescue capability. He is also active in important discussions and conferences on disaster management and training, and climate change.

“Basta may disaster, naroon ako. Sinasama ko mga tao ko. I’ll stay in the Red Cross for as long as I want. I’m a volunteer, nobody can fire me unless I steal,” he says. He adds, “Even if I’m the President of the Philippines, I’ll still be in Red Cross. I’ll be a volunteer forever.”

By Lynda C. Corpuz
Moneysense Magazine
Photography by Carl Valentin

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$96-M Filipino investments outpace FDI in Subic

SUBIC BAY FREE PORT—Investment commitments put up by Filipino-owned locator-companies in this free port have so far eclipsed foreign direct investment (FDI) recorded here this year, marking the first time in recent years that locals outshone imports.

According to the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA), Filipino firms made it to the top of the chart by drowning out the competition with sheer numbers: a total of 139 investment projects that, taken all together, were worth about $96.22 million.

This translates to 57.74 percent of the $166.64 million total for investment projects approved by the SBMA board from January to November this year.

Korean firms, which held sway here since 2006 when shipbuilder Hanjin Heavy Industries Corp. plunked its initial $1-billion investment, slipped to the No. 2 position with only 26 investment projects worth a total of $55.86 million, or 33.52 percent.

This was less than a third of the $198.84 million (85.48 percent) committed by 46 Korean companies in 2008, the same year that 67 Filipino firms invested $10.09 million (4.33 percent).

The third slot among the biggest investors this year went to a Swiss-owned company, which put up a project worth $7 million or 4.2 percent; followed by six Taiwanese projects with a total worth of $2.86 million; and four Japanese projects with a total of $1.27 million.

SBMA Administrator Armand Arreza said that FDI generated in the Subic Bay Free Port in the last 11 months actually fell by more than 67 percent, when compared with the total posted in the same period last year.

Arreza said that FDI in the January-November 2008 period totaled $224.82 million. For the same period this year, it was only $73.82 million.

However, even as foreign investment dropped this year, Arreza noted that Filipino companies “more than made up for the slump” and carried the day for Subic’s investment performance.

“This is an encouraging sign,” Arreza said. “As far as we can tell, Subic is fast regaining its footing in terms of investment generation.”

For the last two months alone, investment pledges in Subic reached a total of $44.42 million, with a total of $23.1 million committed by 12 investor-companies in October, and a total of $21.32 million pledged by 22 other firms in November.

Arezza said that among the biggest investors in the two-month period is Filipino real-estate giant Ayala Land Inc., which pledged $21.4 million for the construction, development and operation of a retail and commercial center.

Seven other Filipino companies made it to the list of top 10 biggest investors this year. These are Tountzis Shipping Inc. with $20.23 million; Jadelink Subic Inc., $16.85 million; Pure Petroleum Corp., $6.22 million; Subic Business and Technology College, $4.29 million; Bonsure Evergreen International Corp., $2.21 million; Chifil International Import-Export Manufacturing Co. Inc., $1.41 million; and Eastern Subic Fuel Depot Corp., with $1.05 million.

The only foreign companies in the same list are Korean casino-resort developer Ocean Nine Philkor Inc., which pledged $52.38 million; and Swiss-owned Philip Morris Philippines Manufacturing Inc., with $7 million for its warehousing operation here.

The SBMA also said that the 163 projects it has approved this year are expected to create a total of 6,340 new jobs. The Subic free port has an active work force of 86,631 as of October 2009.

The agency added that as of November this year, there are a total of 1,310 approved investment projects in the Subic Bay Free-port Zone. These projects are worth a total of $5.918 billion in committed funds. Written by Henry Empeño / Business Mirror Correspondent

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NPA chief surrenders to gov't troops in Zambales

A ranking New People's Army (NPA) chief has voluntarily surrendered to government troops, leading to the recovery of firearms in Zambales, the military said today.

Felisisimo Jacobe, a high-ranking NPA leader in Pampanga, turned himself to elements of the 3rd Infantry Battalion last Dec. 15, reports reaching the Philippine Army headquarters said.

Jacobe handed over his cal. 45 pistol and several ammunitions.

The rebel leader also led government troops to the location of two arms cache in Brgy. Naugsol, Subic, Zambales, where soldiers recovered seven M-16 assault rifles, three M-14 rifles, four M-653 rifles and an M-203 grenade launcher. By Dennis Carcamo (philstar.com)

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Senator Gordon on Media’s Role in the 2010 Elections

Son of Olongapo and former mayor, Senator Richard Gordon has stressed the significant role of media to the public’s voting decision in connection with the upcoming 2010 elections.

At the national convention of the Publishers Association of the Philippines, Inc. Senator Gordon emphasized the media’s vital role in relaying correct information, character and integrity of the candidates on the national and local elections.

“Dapat ang media talagang gamitin ang kakayahan na magsulat, kumalap ng impormasyon at sabihin sa madla na walang silbi ang pera at ang pedigree. Isulat nyo ang tama para malaman ng publiko. If the people are advised by media, with their wealth and information, we can trust the people to make the right decision,” said Senator Gordon.

“Napakalaki ng hamon ng panahon sa ating bansa ngayon. Dapat pumili tayo ng mga lider na may kakayahang humarap sa mga hamon at iangat ang bansa sa gitna ng mga ito,” he added.

Senator Gordon, elder brother of Olongapo City Mayor James “Bong” Gordon Jr. is the standard-bearer of Bagumbayan party for the 2010 presidential race.


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Thursday, December 17, 2009


Olongapo City Mayor James “Bong” Gordon, Jr. has announced yesterday, December 14, 2009 the release of the Christmas cash gift to city government employees. The announcement was made during the City government employees and officials Christmas party at the Olongapo City Convention Center (OCCC).

City Treasurer Marcelino Andawi said funds are already available and will be released within the week in time for the coming Christmas holidays.

“We want to reward our city employees’ excellent performance. We want our employees to feel the Christmas spirit and celebrate the holiday season with enough food on their table. This is a gift to our local public servants,” said Gordon.

According to City Personnel Officer Angie Socorro Barroga, the city government employs two thousand ninety six (2,096) employees.

Gordon said that despite the current economic crisis, the city government would make this Christmas really happy not only for local government workers but for all Olongapeños as well.

The city government Christmas party with the theme, “Remembering Woodstock Moments” left joy in the face of each employee for receiving an early Christmas gift pack from Mayor Bong and First Lady Zambales Vice Governor Anne Gordon.


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Global Satellite gateway in Subic up

Lockheed Martin Technology Positions Inmarsat to Enter Hand-Held Mobile Satellite Services Market

Global Satellite Phone Service Gateways Accepted

PRNewswire -- Lockheed Martin announced today that it has completed site acceptance testing over the Inmarsat-4 satellite network and delivered the Global Satellite Phone Service (GSPS) gateway in Subic Bay to Inmarsat. This is the final major delivery for the GSPS program contract that was awarded to Lockheed Martin in December 2006.

In addition, Lockheed Martin successfully implemented and integrated the evolution of the Global Mobile Radio (GMR2) standard to GMR2+, providing improved performance and features over the prior generation of Lockheed Martin gateway products.

"The delivery of the final GSPS gateway is the culmination of an intense effort to develop the next generation of hand-held mobile satellite telephony," said Bob Kramer, vice president of Information Systems & Global Services-Defense's Space Solutions Division. "The gateways enable Inmarsat to offer its global subscriber base a high quality and feature rich hand-held mobile satellite service."

As part of the GSPS system Lockheed Martin has provided three gateways - located in Italy, Hawaii, and the Philippines - that will enable Inmarsat to provide global high quality handheld voice, fax and data service, even in remote geographical areas.

Lockheed Martin is a leader in the development of mobile satellite ground technology for both military and commercial users.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 140,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation reported 2008 sales of $42.7 billion.

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Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Olongapo City Mayor James “Bong” Gordon, Jr. received from the Metro Olongapo Chamber of Commerce, Inc. (MOCCI) the city’s share in the ‘Olongapo Mardi Gras’ held last October 29-31, 2009.

MOCCI Pres. Aurelio “Bong” Pineda, MOCCI Treasurer Linda Lim and other MOCCI officials turned over to Mayor Bong Gordon the check worth P118,000 with officials and employees of the local government as witnesses at the flag raising ceremonies on December 14, 2009 at the Rizal Triangle Covered Court.

The amount will become part of funds raised by 2009-2010 City Fiesta Committee headed by Olongapo City First Lady and Zambales Vice Gov. Anne Marie Gordon, the 2009 City Fiesta Executive Committee (execom) Chair.

The said amount is fifty percent (50%) of the total income raised in the Mardi Gras, earmarked for the Philhealth Indigency Program, Livelihood Assistance Program and the Scholarship Program of the City Government.

The Metro Olongapo Chamber of Commerce, Inc. (MOCCI) headed by MOCCI Pres. Aurelio Pineda (left of Mayor Gordon) and MOCCI Treasurer Linda Lim (right of Mayor Gordon) turned over to Mayor Bong Gordon the P118,000.00 city government’s fifty percent (50%) share in the income generated from the Olongapo City Mardi Gras held last October 2009. Also in picture are City Vice Mayor Cynthia G. Cajudo, Councilors Ellen Dabu and Elmo Aquino and other MOCCI officers.


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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Is the Philippines ready for Dick Gordon?

With his track record as a leader and executive, it is not a question of whether Sen. Richard “Dick” Gordon is ready for the presidency but whether Filipinos are ready to vote for him.

Without much hype or preamble, Gordon had announced he was running for president on December 1 as he filed his certificate of candidacy at the Commission on Elections.

The announcement came as a surprise.

It was his running mate, Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Bayani Fernando, who was bent on running for president.

Their tandem, under the newly formed Bagumbayan Party, was seemingly formed at the last minute and without a senatorial slate.

Gordon told reporters they teamed up Monday night (November 30), the eve of the deadline for the filing of candidacy.

Fernando said he gave way to his new party mate, owing to Gordon’s senatorial experience.

“No one is lazy on this team. No one is stupid on this team. We may not have much money but we have enough. Besides, we already know what happened to leaders who love money too much,” Gordon told reporters after his announcement.

Thus began what political analyst Benito Lim describes as either a perfect pairing or a political headache.

‘Tough love’

Gordon has been called a “dictator” both for his single-minded drive to achieve a vision for his constituency and his brutal frankness, interpreted as arrogance or abrasiveness.

“He does not know how to consult with his people. He runs things as if he were the only one capable of thinking and the rest are all nincompoops,” said Zambales Rep. Mitos Magsaysay, a long-time critic of Gordon, in a Probe Profiles interview.

Philippine Star columnist Boo Chanco, a good friend of Gordon's and Fernando's, described it as a “lack of inclination to listen to contrary opinions.”

“I get the impression that once they make up their minds on a course of action, [there] is absolutely little chance they will consider other options,” he wrote in his December 4 column titled “Demand and Supply.”

In numerous interviews, Gordon insisted that his straightforward approach is simply his way of “teaching others.”

He does not mince words and swiftly points out incompetence, qualities that are often misinterpreted.

“My name is Dick, but I’m not a ‘tator’,” Gordon quipped in a Probe Profiles Interview. “If I get mad at you, that means I love you. If I don’t talk to you, that’s when you should worry, because then you are nothing to me.”

Two dictators?

Gordon’s partnership with Fernando, who is viewed as a dictator and tough disciplinarian, could be a potential liability for Gordon’s campaign.

“It’s like [Gordon] was looking for a headache,” Lim said in a phone interview “Bayani is really hard-headed. Many voters dislike [Bayani].”

“He (Bayani Fernando) has a public image as… a ‘Hitler’ (dictator) because of what he did to the vendors and the continuous traffic,” Lim added. “In that sense, Gordon will have to contend with negative reactions.”

Though credited for his numerous public works and traffic system projects, Fernando’s violent dispersal of sidewalk vendors and demolition of squatters' houses has not endeared him to the masses.

The twin values of discipline and strictness are the pillars of Gordon’s no-nonsense leadership style, just like his running mate.

In their view, discipline and order is exactly what the country needs.

“I tell things like it is. I tell people off. And if [people] don’t like that, fine, I can live with that. But don’t complain if you get somebody you like and not somebody that’s needed,” Gordon said in another interview.

Decisive, no nonsense

Gordon’s strongest suit by far is his experience. At 64, Gordon has held a variety of top positions, both in government and in the private sector.

A law student at the time, he was the youngest delegate to the 1971 Constitutional Convention. He was brand manager of Procter & Gamble and was a litigation lawyer of ACCRA Law Offices.

Taking after his father (James L. Gordon) and mother (Amelia Gordon), who ran the city in 1963 and 1967 respectively, Gordon became mayor of Olongapo City in Zambales from 1980 to 1986.

He turned the former “sin city” into a model one by boosting police accountability through I.D. systems, proper health and sanitation, waste management and the strict enforcement of color coding in public transport.

In 1992, while in his second term as Olongapo City mayor, he became the founding chairman of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA).

Charged with converting the former US naval base into a prime economic zone, Gordon attracted 300 foreign and local investors to Subic Bay. It became the site of the 1996 APEC Summit.

Dual roles

He vacated his mayoral post and assumed full capacity as SBMA Chairman after a citizen in 1993 complained of his dual role and the Supreme Court ruled he should only have one role.

His wife, Katherine Gordon, replaced him as Olongapo City mayor in 1995.

From February 2001 to January 2004, he was appointed secretary of tourism and vigorously publicized the “Wow Philippines!” campaign, which enticed foreign tourists to the country.

In 2004, he ran and won for Senator under Lakas-CMD, garnering over 12.7 million votes at 5th place in the Senate race. He has helped pass the New Automated Elecion System Law and tax laws.

As head of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, he helped expose corruption in President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s administration by publishing a report on the NBN-ZTE deal.

He has also been part of the Philippine National Red Cross (PNRC) for 40 years and stands as its Chairman and CEO. Gordon is credited for helping modernize the PNRC’s rescue equipment and facilities, and boosting its blood bank.

For his dual role as PNRC Chairman and senator, he is the subject of an ethics complaint in the Senate. Gordon said his role as PNRC chairman has not interfered with his role as senator.

‘The transformers’

Gordon’s platform prioritizes health issues and education, including raising teachers’ salaries and disease prevention.

To fund basic social services, Gordon wants to call for a moratorium on debt servicing. He vowed to “use his diplomatic skills to fight the World Bank and International Monetary Fund” in this regard.

Gordon said he plans to decongest Manila and spread businesses out to other urbanized cities like Subic, Clark and Pangasinan.

He also plans to develop core industries like tourism in the country’s island groups. Visayas will be the country’s “beach capital” while Mindanao will focus on aquaculture and agriculture.

Most of all, Gordon’s Bagumbayan party focuses on his favorite adage since the 1980s: “What the country needs is not a change of men but a change in men.”

For Gordon, this means a switch from transactional leadership (a reactionary, rewards and punishments-based leadership) to transformational leadership (proactive and motivational leadership).

Gordon and Fernando have taken to calling themselves “the transformers.”

Need for exposure

Gordon impressed political and media analysts at ANC’s “Harapan 2010: The Presidential Forum” on December 2 with his articulate answers and specific plans of action on issues.

He had also raised sensible questions and gave a fiery speech during the much-publicized joint session of Congress on Martial Law.

However, one of the major challenges Gordon faces, campaign-wise, is to gain more and more exposure.

“He is not that well known. Maybe with the voters of Zambales he is, but as a national candidate, at least based on surveys, he is not,” Lim said. “He doesn’t have the machinery and range to reach voters.”

In a December poll survey by the Social Weather Stations (SWS), Gordon’s voter preference stood at 0.5%, compared to those who have dominated election surveys like Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III (47%) and Sen. Manuel “Manny” Villar Jr. (20%).

Even before he announced his bid for the presidency, Gordon had less than 1% voter preference in presidential surveys and less than 2% in vice presidential surveys.

Further, both Gordon and Fernando’s votes will most likely come from the rich and middle class, Lim said. This is only a small portion of the electorate.

“He has a nice platform and slogan (change from transactional to transformational leadership) but he has to translate it in simple terms so that ordinary voters can understand. He has to prove he is different,” Lim said.

Gordon is certainly in for a tough battle for the presidency. But as Gordon said in one of his magazine interviews, he never backs down from a fight. Report by Kristine Servando, abs-cbnNEWS.com/Newsbreak.

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Processing of ECC in Subic streamlined

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT, Zambales – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) streamlined the processing and issuance of environmental compliance certificates (ECCs) and certificates of non-coverage (CNCs) within the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) area in line with President Arroyo’s program of enhancing transparency in government transactions.

This developed as the DENR also implements its online Environmental Impact System (EIS)–Information System, where new applications for ECC and CNC can be viewed at the Department’s official website.

DENR Secretary Lito Atienza said that all ECC and CNC applications for projects located within SBMA area shall now be processed by the DENR office here, through the regional Environmental Management Bureau (EMB).

Under DENR Administrative Order 14, Series of 2009, the approval of the ECC and CNC applications is now within the authority of the EMB regional director.

Approval of applications for ECC and CNC within the Laguna de Bay area is likewise with the EMB regional offices of either DENR Region 4A or the National Capital Region (NCR) under the newly issued DENR administrative order.

“This move is pursuant to Presidential Administrative Order No. 42, Series of 2002, which designated the EMB regional directors as the approving officials for ECC applications for non-environmentally critical projects located in critical areas, as well as CNC applications for projects not covered by the EIS system,” Atienza said. By FRANCO G. REGALA - Manila Bulletin

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Magsaysay, Ebdane team up

After quitting the presidential race, former Public Works Secretary Hermogenes Ebdane Jr. has opted to run for governor of Zambales after forming an alliance with the Magsaysay clan.

Ebdane will have for his vice-gubernatorial running mate, Jury Deloso, a political neophyte who is a nephew of the incumbent Gov. Amor Deloso.

Former Zambales governor Vicente Magsaysay confirmed the alliance with Ebdane, and the withdrawal of his daughter, Rose Lourdes Magsaysay-Crisostomo, from the gubernatorial race.

“This is the first time it happened in Zambales and maybe in Philippine politics,” Magsaysay said.

Magsaysay said that sacrifices have to be made and personal interest have to be set aside to pursue a common political goal of replacing Deloso.

“Ebdane now becomes the common candidate and popular choice of our supporters in Zambales,” Magsaysay said.

Ebdane’s son Omar said his father would be running under the Workers and Peasant Party, denying talk that he was secretly fielded by the administration party.

But Ebdane, through the Magsaysays, has obtained the support of eight out of 13 incumbent mayors who passed a resolution through the League of Municipal Mayors of Zambales supporting his candidacy.

The mayors also endorsed the re-election bid of first district Rep. Milagros Magsaysay, who is being pitted against former vice governor Anne Gordon, and the candidacy of the Magsaysay patriarch against Mayor James “Bong” Gordon of Olongapo City.

Ebdane is a native of Candelaria, Zambales and is married to the former Alma Cabanayan with whom he has three children.

He filed his certificate of candidacy for governor on Dec. 1, a few days after quitting the presidential race.

“This local boy is coming home,” he said in the farewell message he read before employees of the Public Works Department last month. by Joel E. Zurbano and Cecille Garcia - Manila Standard Today

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Duty-free privileges key to Ayala Land’s Olongapo development plan

SUBIC BAY FREE PORT— The tax- and duty-free regime that has made this free port one of the biggest generators of foreign direct investment in the country would also be crucial to the realization of a 7,000-sq-meter Ayala Land development project in this free port and nearby Olongapo City.

Armand Arreza, administrator of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA), said the project proponent has stressed that Subic’s tax- and duty-free privileges would be “a key component in realizing the P3-billion development project proposed by Ayala Land Inc. [ALI].”

According to ALI president and CEO Anthony Aquino, fiscal incentives like Subic’s minimal 5-percent gross income tax, if successfully extended to the 7,000-sq-meter Olongapo City Central Business District (CBD) Triangle, “would set the stage for robust trade in the area.” He added that the tax- and duty-free incentives would be part of the package that the developer could offer to prospective investors and business locators.

Aquino also said that the developer is eyeing the participation of businessmen from Olongapo for the proposed CBD Triangle project, adding that local investments would be the “lifeblood of this development.”

Arreza said he has assured Aquino that tax- and duty-free perks will be applied to the CBD project as soon as President Arroyo approves the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of Executive Order (EO) 675.

Arreza also said that the IRR for EO 675 has become a collaborative work of the SBMA and the Bureau of Customs (BOC) office in this free port.

The IRR details the process of identifying, administering and regulating the areas where said incentives can be extended, he added.

Arroyo signed the said EO on Nov. 5, 2007, citing the need to expand the area where Subic’s tax- and duty-free privileges would apply.

Arreza said that EO 675 provides that tax- and duty-free privileges within the Subic Special Economic and Free Port Zone “shall apply within the secured area consisting of the presently fenced-in former Subic Naval Base and such other areas that may be identified, fenced, secured, or declared as additional secured area by the SBMA.”

“Once the President gives her approval, it is up to the city of Olongapo to decide what particular incentives to offer,” he said.

Arreza, Aquino and Olongapo City Mayor James Gordon Jr. signed a Memorandum of understanding last week for the proposed Olongapo CBD Triangle project.

Under the agreement, ALI will commission the master plan for free, granted that the Olongapo government would give ALI the option to develop or purchase, subject to applicable laws, the city’s properties inside the 7,000-sq-meter project area.

Arreza, who has pushed for the expansion of Subic’s free-port regime to nearby communities, said the proposed project will be the first step in the agency’s push to develop areas beyond Subic’s secured area.

The CBD Triangle project aims to develop adjoining portions of the Subic Bay Free Port and Olongapo City “into a green, environment-friendly residential, commercial and institutional area.”

The project is expected to boost Subic’s drive to gain more investments and create more livelihood opportunities for local residents.

Arreza also said that among the incentives offered to Subic business locators are tax- and duty-free importation; exemption from all local and national taxes, with only a 5-percent corporate tax on gross income; unrestricted entry of foreign investments; no foreign exchange control; visas for foreign nationals; and expanded allowable deduction and higher percentage of income allowable from sources within the Customs territory for regional enterprises. Written by Henry Empeño / Business Mirror

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Monday, December 14, 2009

Job Opportunities in Olongapo-Subic Bay



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www.subicbay.ph, http://olongapo-subic.com, http://sangunian.com, http://olongapo-ph.com, http://oictv.com, http://brgy-ph.com, http://subicbay-news.com, http://batanggapo.com 16 January 2012