Just after my Bucari trip, a few hours actually, I’m out on another trip and this time my destination is Bacolod City. My family and other relatives at my father’s side had a reunion and we stayed at my Lola’s house in Bata.
Last time I was in Negros was on September 2007 for an organizational study of Riverside Hospital with side-trip to Patag in Silay. I knew of some new developments in Bacolod and had the chance to see them myself.
Sanparq Square, home of Bacolod Branch of Convergy’s, the largest call center company in the world.
Also visited a recreational center in Talisay called Nature’s Village
There’s a new mall in Bacolod called 888 Chinatown Square, which is a divisoria-type development. I went inside and saw a lot of shops selling cheap RTW and ukay-ukay clothes, shoes, and electronic products like cellphones and MP3 platers but I noticed most of the spaces are still unoccupied. There was this one shop, which intrigued me because of the Iphone, N95 they had on sale for less than P10,000. I later realized they were just China phones and the same models could be bought in The Atrium Mall back home for a cheaper price.
888 Chinatown Squar
One of my close friends, whom I was with in Bucari, had just returned to her home in Kabankalan City. I told her that I wanted to visit her place and that she would look for a place for me to stay. She agreed and found a boarding house for me to stay near the City Plaza for only P100/night ^_^
Kabankalan City is two hours away from Bacolod and on the way, I got to take pictures of the other towns and cities in Negros Occidental.
Colonial House beside the Plaza (hadn’t had the chance to see the house of Tan Juan)
Gothic-style Roman Catholic Chuch of Bago, loving it!
Bago City Hall
View of Guimaras from Villadolid
Roman Catholic Church of Hinigaran
In Kabankalan, I was able to tour interesting sights within the City Proper.
Fountain in the City Plaza
Roman Catholic Church
Public Elementary School
Public Comfort Room in the City Plaza
Gaisano City Kabankalan
Kabankalan is the second largest city in terms of economic-size in Neros Occidental next to Bacolod. It is strategically located in the center of Negros Island and is the transit point of travellers/commuters crossing from Northwestern Negros (Bacolod City area) to Southern Negros (Sipalay area all the way to Dumaguete City) and vice-versa. The city has a sizeable commercial economy and the only City outside Bacolod (that I have been to) that looks like what a city should look like.
I am quite surprised of the grandiose public buildings in Kabankalan but not quite impressed. Kabankalan is a city, which had a total income of P444M in 2006 (No figure for 2007 yet). P386M is from the allocation of the national government called IRA (Internal Revenue Allotment) and that means that Kabankalan is 87% dependent on the National Government for its funds. Meanwhile, Kabankalan also generated a local income of P58.0M, which is considerably large but only ranks 11th when compared among other cities in the region despite it having the 3rd largest total income next to the cities of Bacolod and Iloilo. During the same year, Kabankalan only spent 67% of its income or P140M in savings.
This is the breakdown of how the IRA of Kabankalan is computed
Population – P115,209,373.93 (for its pop of 149,769)
Land Area – P221,682,895.01 (for its land area of 726.40 kmÂ²)
Equal Sharing of all cities in the Country – P49,745,511.06
Total – P386,637,780.00
You can see in the information above that Kabankalan gets almost half of its income from the IRA it gets from its expansive land area computed with a predefined formula for all cities. If Kabankalan was a mere municipality the amount of IRA that it would have received would just be decreased to a third. These data only goes to show the disparity of the distribution of IRA to municipalities and small cities because cities get more IRA per square kilometer and per capita, which is theoretically correct because land and people in cities have more economic value that their counterparts in towns but when you have a city with a very large land area like Kabankalan, where only a fraction of its land area is urban/developed and most of it is just farmlands/sugarcane plantations and mountains, a large disparity happens. And this disparity is responsible for Kabankalan to be able to finance such grandiose public infrastructures including a locally-funded airport that gotten the nod of President GMA.
Don’t get me wrong though. I have nothing against Kabankalan, in fact I find it a suitable place to live, with clean, wide roads, well lighted city proper at night, convenient shopping centers nearby, and a peaceful and fun-loving citizenry. I merely want to present my thoughts.
After I was able to contemplate on what was mentioned above while I was touring Kabankalan’s city proper, I took a refreshing break from the deep thinking by visiting Mag-aso Falls. The place was very nice, I would definitely love to come back to Mag-aso and Kabankalan!
After returning from my Bacolod-Kabankalan trip, I decided to take a break from traveling overload I’ve been getting myself into for the past week. I’ll just stay home and try to get my skin to its original color while I share my adventures through my blogs.