BERMUDEZ, Edwin F.
Re: Personnel Selection Board (PSB);
RESOLUTION No. 000828
Edwin F. Bermudez, Vice Mayor, Municipality of Columbio, Province of Sultan Kudarat requests a ruling from the Commission relative to his right to convene the Personnel Selection Board (PSB) to select applicants to fill up the vacancy in the Sangguniang Bayan of said Municipality.
In his letter-request, Vice Mayor Bermudez narrates, as follows:
"The Secretary of the Sanggunian had resigned on November 30, 1998. As required by Civil Service Law and Rules, the vacated position was advertised thru the local media which publication attracted interested applicants.
"In view of the urgency to fill up this position considering that this involves responsible record keeping of vital documents such as approved resolutions and ordinances of the municipal government and other functions / task attached to the said position we had requested the Honorable Mayor for evaluation of the applicants impliedly thru the Personnel Selection Board on June 14, 1999. Due to inaction of the Municipal Mayor, as chairman of the Personnel Selection Board, we made a follow-up letter reiterating our request on July 19, 1999. As of this writing no action was ever made on our request. The Personnel Selection Board did never convene, hence, we cannot make further action to appoint the Secretary to the sanggunian to the detriment of public service.
"It appears that there is a deliberate refusal of the Municipal Mayor to convene the Personnel Selection Board categorically to deny the Municipal Vice Mayor to exercise his power to appoint personnel in the office of the Sangguniang Bayan on account that only appointments certified by the Chairman of the Personnel Selection Board shall be entertained by the Civil Service Commission.
"x x x .
"In this premise will it be possible for me as Vice Mayor and appointing authority to convene the same membership of the Personnel Selection Board on matters of appointment of personnel in the Sanggunian? We invoked this query based on the fact that in all cases in the agencies of the government the appointing authority is the chairman of the Personal Selection Board."
The sole issue to be resolved in his query is whether or not the Vice Mayor can convene the Personnel Selection Board to evaluate and select applicants to fill up the vacant position in the Sanggunian.
Relevant to the instant case is Sec. 80 (b) and (c) R.A. 7160 otherwise known as the Local Government Code of 1991. It provide, as follows:
city or municipality a personnel selection board to assist the local chief executive in the judicious and objective selection of personnel for employment as well as for promotion, and in the formulation of such policies as would contribute to employee welfare.
"Sec. 80. x x x.
(b) There shall be established in every province,
(c) The personnel selection board shall be beaded by the local chief executive, and its members shall be determined by the resolution of the sanggunian concerned. A representative of the Civil Service Commission, if any, and the personnel officer of the local government unit concerned shall be ex officio members of the board.
The abovementioned provision specifically provides that the PSB shall be headed by the local chief executive. Purposely, the PSB is established to assist the latter in appointing personnel of the Municipality and to ensure the judicious and objective selection of the personnel.
Interestingly, Section 80 of the RA 7160 must also be considered in ascertaining as to who should be the head of the selection board in cases where employment in the Sangguniang Bayan is concerned.
Under Article 2, Chapter 3 of the Local Government Code of 1991, the Vice Mayor is also granted the same power to appoint. It provides that:
SEC 445. Powers, Dufies and Compensation.- (a) The vice mayor shall:
"x x x
"(2) Subject to civil service law, rules and regulations, appoint all officials and employees of the sangguniang bayan, except those whose manner of appointment is specifically provided in this code."
Squarely applicable in this case is the ruling laid down by the Court of Appeals in the case of Atty. Nolasco R. Reyes et.al. vs. Hon. Roman R. Rosales. CA-G.R. SP NO. 48533 promulgated on November 26, 1999 that a Vice Mayor has no authority to preside and convene the Personnel Selection Board which mandated to pass upon the fitness of the appointees of the Sangguniang Bayan.
In the said decision, the Court of Appeals succinctly held, as follows:
"x x x
"A strict interpretation of Section 80 of the Local Government Code would result in a mischief where the exercise of power of the municipal vice-mayor to appoint employees of the Sangguniang Bayan could be rendered nugatory if the municipal mayor is placed as chairman of the PSB.
"This is bolstered by the fact that Article 166 of the aforesaid Implementing Rules of the Local Government Code of 1991 recognizes the authority of the "presiding officer of the sanggunian" which is the vice-mayor (Section 445 (1) of R.A. 7160), to appoint personnel for employment as well as for promotion, where applicable. Article 164 of the said Implementing Rules provides:
Art. 164. Responsibility for Human Resource Management and Development; Applicable laws. - xxx
x x x x x x x x x
"(c) The presiding officer of the sanggunian shall, where applicable, be responsible for human resource management and development and shall take all personnel actions in accordance with civil service law, rules and regulations." (Emphasis supplied)
On the other hand, paragraph (b) of the same Article 164 of the Implementing Rules considered separately the responsibility of the municipal mayor, to wit:
"(b) The local chief executive shall be responsible for human resource management and development in his LGU and shall take all personnel actions in accordance with the constitutional provisions on civil service pertinent laws, rules and regulations including such policies, guidelines and standards as CSC may prescribe. x x x
Furthermore, it may not be amiss to point out that even in Section. V (A)(1) (e) of the model attached to the Joint Memorandum Circular No. 01, series of 1997, both the CSC and the DILG explicitly declared that the PSB shall be composed of the:
"Local Chief Executive as Chairman or Vice Governor / Mayor in case of appointment in the Office of the Sangguniang Bayan (SB)", (Emphasis supplied)
Clearly, the vice mayor's assumption of chairmanship of the PSB on the subject appointment is supported by law. x x x
Clearly, it follows that when the appointment concerns employees of the Sangguniang Bayan, the Chairman of the PSB can be the Municipal Vice-Mayor.
WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, the Commission hereby rules that Municipal Vice Mayor Edwin F. Bermudez can convene the Personnel Selection Board of the said Municipality and appoint personnel to fill up the vacancy in the Sangguniang Bayan.
Quezon City. MAR 28 2000