Public Financial Management Assessment Tool (PFMAT): A Closer Look
The Public Financial Management Assessment Tool (PFMAT) for Local Government Units (LGUs) is a self-assessment, evidence-based instrument which describes the characteristics of an open and orderly Public Financial Management System. In order to realize the aims of PFMAT and ensure comprehensive understanding and application among various LGUs, the Department of Budget and Management Regional Office V, in collaboration with the Association of Local Budget Officers in Region V, Inc. (ALBOREV, INC) conducted a two (2)-day Re-orientation Training/Workshop on the use of the Public Financial Management Assessment Tool (PFMAT), including discussions on the guidelines on the release of the Local Government Support Fund – Other Financial Assistance to LGUs in the FY 2019 GAA(LBC No. 199) on August 19-20, 2019 at DBM ROV Conference Hall, Regional Government Center Site, Rawis, Legazpi City.
The two-day seminar was participated by LGUs from various municipalities of Camarines Sur and the Provincial Government. It started with a kick off message from the Director of ROV, Mr. Renato M. De Vera, emphasizing the significance of the said training and workshop. He added that consolidated efforts to achieve one goal makes the job worthwhile and satisfying. Overview of the PFM was introduced by Ms. Marissa R. Punzal, OIC- Chief Budget and Management Specialist of Division B. Included in the presentation were the legal basis, elements, vision, goal and strategic directions for LGU PFM. The Linkage between planning and budgeting was discussed by Ms. Joanna M. Rasco-Senior Budget and Management Specialist, stating that the Annual Investment Plan (AIP) serves as the link to connect the two. The next topic discussed was about understanding PFMAT which involved all the substantial concepts needed before performing the assessment tool. Ms. Alessandra B. Apuya, Budget and Management Analyst, thoroughly addressed and explicated each critical dimension with their indicators and sub-indicators, if any, for every responsible units. Afterwards, they conducted an open forum to clarify ambiguities and cater the questions raised by the participants.
The Provincial Government of Camarines Sur (PGCS)was one of the presenters that showed its accomplished PFMAT and PFMIP (Public Financial Management Improvement Plan) using the version 2.6 of PFMAT software. The PFMAT score of PGCS was 3.34 in year 2016 and 3.11 in the year 2017. There was a decline of 0.23 in the average PFMAT score. Nonetheless, they assured that the drop in the rating will not hinder the Provincial Government to constantly support and provide better service to the people of Camarines Sur.
Furthermore, Local Budget Circular 119-Guidelines on the Release and Utilization of the LGSF (Local Government Support Fund) was introduced to the participants. In this connection, municipalities and provinces were encouraged to apply for financial assistance such as in the purchase of mini dump trucks, purchase of ambulance, and others as stated in the said circular to support priority programs and projects of their respective LGUs.
Overall, collaboration and teamwork can lead toward an effective outcome that can be gleaned by a competent PFMAT. The Province of Camarines Sur is committed in improving its rating by continuously refining and improving every single policy to give the best for all its constituents.
By: Rona Loraine P. Cabral