The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) has inaugurated a new evacuation facility funded with gambling tax revenue in Bulacan. The ceremony for the new facility was held on Monday and it reflects the regulator’s efforts to continue creating societal benefits especially when the Philippines finds itself battered by nature’s elements with thousands of people being displaced due to storms, monsoons, and other climate-driven changes.
PAGCOR Invests in MPECs
The new structure was worth PHP29.7 million ($550,000) and features all amenities so that evacuees would feel at court. There are amenities and recreational facilities, such as a basketball courtyard, along with comfortable rooms, bleachers, a stage area, and more. The construction is hosted in Barangay Minuyan Proper and severs as an evacuation facility for mostly urban poor residents who come from Metro Manila.
Mayor Arturo Robes welcomed the PAGCOR initiative and said that it is a first-of-its-kind to arrive in the city and offer a number of important additions, including a more lasting overall structure foundation that will make the facility a better long-term investment. PAGCOR officials joined the inauguration and welcomed the opportunity to be re-investing gambling tax revenue into worthwhile social causes.
PAGCOR’s main focus has been to control the gambling industry in a bid to ensure that the public purse gets more money. The regulator has been focused on contributing funds towards the state budget, helping with evacuation and relief efforts, and patching up ailing finances during the COVID-19 lockdown when the Philippines’ health system was under great duress.
Facilities Built to Last
Commenting on this new facility, PAGCOR chairman and CEO Andrea Domingo said that the new multi-purpose evacuation centers (MPECs) are built to last and that more of those will be coming in the next few days. Domingo confirmed that PAGCOR has already completed building similar facilities in numerous other locations.
Domingo confirmed that more provinces and communities will stand to benefit from the MPECs before long once the respective evacuation centers have been completed. Back in May, PAGCOR revealed its first dedicated village project to house victims of various natural disasters.