Pulilan used to be the dumping ground of salvage victims in Bulacan in 1991. It had only twelve policemen and a disorganized barangay tanod. It was also considered the second poorest municipality among the 24 municipalities of the province. In 1992, the municipal government embarked on a 5-year development plan with the following thrust: social service delivery; human resources and youth development and economic development focusing on restoring peace and order and encouragement of investors. To help attain its vision of a peaceful, self-reliant and progressive community, the municipal government reactivated the barangay tanod brigade to augment the police force composed of 17 personnel serving a 60,000 population.
Each barangay recruited twenty volunteer barangay tanods grouped into three teams for rotation purposes headed by a tanod chief under the direct supervision of the barangay captain. The municipality had a total of 380 active barangay tanods. They had set up a federation at the municipal level headed by a president accountable to the Philippine National Police station commander and to the local chief executive. The program had an annual operating budget of ₱1 million from the municipal fund for the ₱500 monthly allowance (₱200 from the barangay and ₱300 from the municipality), insurance of all the barangay tanods (₱7,000 per barangay tanod) and their mutual aid fund of ₱2,000. They were also equipped with radios for communication, flashlights, nightsticks, tear gas, patrol jeep/tricycles. Aside from the maintenance of peace and order, the tanods were also involved in tree planting, waste management, clean-up drives and disaster management.
From a crime ridden place, Pulilan rose to become a peaceful and progressive place. Crime incidents were reduced from 37% in 1992 to 10% in 1995. Crime solution efficiency was higher than its neighboring municipalities. The improved peace and order condition coupled with its strategic location created a magnet for investors and establishment of business enterprises. Around 2,350 jobs were created and revenues of the municipality rose from ₱6.5 million in 1992 to ₱28.2 million in 1996 with locally generated revenue constituting 50 percent of its total revenues.
This program is recognized as one of the Ten Outstanding Programs in the 1997 Galing Pook Awards.