The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) allowed the realignment of unutilized Social Development and Management Program (SDMP) funds of mining companies amid the implementation of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) due to COVID-19 pandemic.

Pursuant to the March 27 Memorandum and the April 1 guidelines issued by the agency, MGB Director Atty. Wilfredo Moncano authorized its regional offices to allow mining companies to realign their total unspent budget for 2019 which was carried over to 2020 Annual SDMP to aid the affected impact and non-impact communities in their respective localities during the ECQ period.

According to the guidelines, the 2020 ASDMP budget can also be “realigned subject to the approval of the MGB Regional Director concerned.”

MGB Regional Offices are likewise being given the authority and responsibility “to approve realignments of SDMP fund to programs/projects/activities deemed necessary to combat COVID-19.”

As part of the compliance, all necessary documents for the accounting of the utilization of the realigned SDMP fund shall be included in the quarterly accomplishment report of mining contractors/permit holders subject to monitoring of the MGB Regional Office concerned.

A weekly accomplishment report shall also be submitted to the MGB Central Office starting April 8, 2020 and every Wednesday thereafter following the prescribed report form from the Office of the President (Table B and Annex B) for submission to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.