Tagbilaran City successfully completed its partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) under its Strengthening Urban Resilience for Growth with Equity (SURGE). Tagbilaran City which was singled out to be part of the Cities Development Initiative (CDI) In 2015 along with 7 local government units led by Puerto Princesa, Zamboanga City, Batangas, Iloilo, Legaspi, General Santos, and Cagayan De Oro, was again chosen to continue another innovative partnership with USAID.
Dubbed as USAID-CHANGE (Cities for Enhanced Governance and Engagement), the CHANGE project aims to support democratic governance in the Philippines by advocating responsive local governance by strengthening the enabling environment for decentralization; enhancing service delivery capacity; legitimacy, transparency and accountability of participating local governments, and empowering citizens by increasing their participation in local governance processes. Dr. Rosalinda Paredes will remain as the City Program Coordinator together with Madeleine Boiser Sinon. To jumpstart the program, a survey and assessment capacity among civil society organizations (CSOs) in Tagbilaran were conducted.