BAGUIO CITY – The chairman of the City Council Committee on Finance and Appropriations assured that the proposed revised schedule of market values on real property taxes will be ready for deliberation by the local legislative body this September so that it could be passed the soonest for implementation next year.
Councilor Elmer Datuin, chairman of the powerful finance and appropriations committee of the local legislative body, claimed they concluded the final consultations for the proposed revision of the schedule of market values of the city’s real property taxes and the results of the meeting was fruitful as the significantly reduced rates have been acceptable to the landowners and even the lawyers of various corporations.
He said the committee is just completing the data gathered from the numerous consultations conducted including from back from the previous council to reconcile the same with the final version of the City Assessor’s Office before submitting the final form of the ordinance that will incorporate the minimum rates to be implemented in a staggered basis.
Supposedly, the proposed ordinance on the revision of the schedule of market values on the city’s real property taxes was to be discussed on second reading after publication but the members of the committee opted to call for another public hearing and for the City Assessor’s Office to make another adjustment to somewhat further lower the rates to make it acceptable to most of the landowners that attended the said hearing.
Datuin admitted the local government must introduce the needed adjustments on its outdated schedule of market values on real property taxes as the Department of Finance and the Bureau of Local government Finance (BLGF) already hoisted the red flag on the city over the said matter.
He admitted that the local government has projected income goals on the proposed increase in the schedule of market values to fund certain priority projects but the City Assessor’s office needs to re-adjust its computations to consider residents’ request for staggered implement of the proposed increase.
Aside from priority projects of the local government, part of the funds generated from the payment of real property taxes will be given to the barangays as part of their Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) and the city’s Special Education Fund (SEF).
After the council enacts the proposed revision, Datuin said the local legislative body will start working on the deliberations for the amendments to the city’s revenue code which has also not been changed for over 17 years now.
He stated one of the factors on the city’s performance in governance based on the criteria of the National Competitiveness Council (NCC) is the failure of the local government to update its schedule of market values and revenue code to cope with the prevailing trend of the times.
By Dexter A. See