Senior citizens to be exempted from payment of parking fees

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The City Council approved on third and final reading a proposed ordinance amending Ordinance No. 08, series of 2013 that previously granted senior citizens at least 20 percent discount in parking fees to exempt them from being charged such parking fees.

The ordinance authored by Councilor Betty Lourdes F. Tabanda stated that Ordinance No. 08, series of 2013, which granted senior citizens of at least 20 percent discount in parking fees will be amended to grant exemptions to senior citizens from the payment of parking fees.

The ordinance asserted that all business establishments shall grant free parking privilege to all senior citizens of the city subject to the guidelines but the measure shall not cover the so-called overnight parking.

The ordinance claimed the same shall be applicable to all business establishments that collect parking fees to its customers in the different parts of the city.

To avail of the free parking privilege, the ordinance emphasized that the senior citizen must be a resident of the city; the senior citizen must be the one driving the motor vehicle or is a passenger of a motor vehicle; the senior citizen must present his or her valid senior citizen’s identification card;  exemption from payment of parking fees shall apply only on the first three hours; on the fourth hour, the corresponding hourly rate shall apply and be collected and no fees shall be collected from the senior citizens in case of flat rate policy.

The ordinance added that all business establishments covered by the pertinent provision of the proposed measure shall install the necessary signages to serve notice to the public of the exemptions granted to senior citizens in the collection of parking fees.

Under the proposed ordinance, any violation of the provisions of the measure shall be filed with the Office of the Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA) under the City Social Welfare and Development Office that will assist in the filing of the necessary complaints or charges against the identified violators.

The ordinance revealed that any business establishment collecting parking fess found to be in violation of the proposed measure shall be penalized with a fine of P1,000 for the first offense and a fine of P2,000 for the second offense.

Earlier, the city legislative body approved Ordinance No. 8, series of 2013 which required business establishments collecting parking fees in the different parts of the city to grant at least 20 percent discount in the parking fees charged to senior citizens patronizing their businesses.

In a status report on legislative tracking and analysis conducted by the research division of the local legislative body on Ordinance No. 08, series of 2013, several findings, comments and recommendations as well as suggestions were presented for consideration to further improve its implementation for the full benefit of the elderly, thus, the need to introduce the appropriate amendments to the existing measure.

The proposal was referred to a committee of the local legislative body to evaluate and assess whether the same will be passed on second and third readings in the coming months considering that the same will have to pass through a series of consultations with the concerned sectors. By Dexter A. See