SJDM’s fate as highly urbanized city up to Bulacan voters

The possible conversion of the City of San Jose del Monte (SJDM) as a highly urbanized city (HUC) now lies in the hands of registered Bulacan voters. The plebiscite for the possible ratification of the City of San Jose del Monte as HUC coincided with the conduct of the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections (BSKE) on Monday. Apart from filling out the ballots for BSKE, registered voters were handed another ballot containing the question of whether they are in favor or against the city's conversion by Proclamation 1057 issued by former President Rodrigo Duterte on Dec. 4, 2020. Voters may write 'yes' or 'no' to the question. If the 'yes' vote prevails, the City of San Jose del Monte will be given autonomy from the provincial government of Bulacan. Duterte issued Proclamation 1057 after Sangguniang Panlungsod of San Jose del Monte, through Resolution No. 2019-059-09, requested him to declare the city as HUC. Under Section 452 of Republic Act (RA) 7160 or the Local Government Code of 1991, the city with a minimum population of 200,000 inhabitants as certified by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) and with the latest annual income of at least PHP50 million based on 1991 constant prices, as certified by the City Treasurer, can be classified as HUC. The City of San Jose del Monte has met the minimum requirements prescribed under Section 452 of RA 7160 for a city to be classified as HUC. According to Proclamation 1057, the city's population and income have been verified and attested to by the PSA and the Department of Finance - Bureau of Local Government Finance, respectively. The city recorded the largest population of 651,813, accounting for 17.57 percent of the population of the entire province, based on the PSA's 2020 Census of Population and Housing. The City of San Jose del Monte was proclaimed as a component city on Sept. 10, 2000 by virtue of RA 8797. It is the largest town in the whole province of Bulacan in terms of land area and population. Dubbed the 'Balcony of the Metropolis', it is the first city in the province and recorded as the 86th city of the Philippines.

Souce: Philippines News Agency