The city council is ready to approve its Sports Code which has been in the works for almost two years now and wherein national athletes enrolled in local universities and has called Baguio a second home for years now will also be recognized and accorded benefits including automatic grant of incentives.
In including adopted athletes like Nesthy Petecio and Irish Magno among others as city recognized athletes under the fourth category, this puts to rest the argument who shall be included in the athletes incentive ordinance.
Petecio and company were the last to receive their incentives from their victories in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games where she won a gold that is worth P30,000 under the 2016 sports incentive code.
Magno was granted P20,000 for her silver finish, while Josie Gabuco and Carlo Paalam were recipients of P30,000 each as gold medal winners. Aira Villegas for her bronze finish was P10,000 the richer.
The sports code only required a proof of residence or school identification card as qualification for the application for the incentives, which councilor Levy Lloyd Orcales said would only require one.
“The sports code will rectify errors in the sports incentive ordinance of 2016,” he said, as he was instrumental in approving a resolution recognizing Petecio and company that saw them receive their incentives last January 4, during the city council’s first session.
They were the third and last batch of athletes to receive their incentives. The first batch in October last year was for the resident athletes, the second batch in November for athletes whose residence were put into question, like those recognized by their home local government units; and, last January for national athletes who train and being schooled here.
Under the sports code, there will be four type of athletes, residents, affiliate, attached and adopted, their status will determine the prioritization in the acceptance as city recognized athletes.
Orcales said that the sports committee that include him as co-chair with the mayor, sports coaches, school sports leaders and even media will determine who be accepted in the master list wherein audition through tournaments with no prizes will be staged, he added.
The city will also have a special day for athletes including recognitions, demonstrations every December 7.
“We will have awards and other festivities during this day,” said Paul Rillorta of the city sports office.