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Bacolod SP to water district: Where is the share of proceeds?

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• CHRYSEE G. SAMILLANO

The Bacolod Sangguniang Panlungsod is urging the Bacolod City Water District and Prime Water Bacolod to comply with the mandate of the Philippine Constitution and the Local Government Code by remitting to Bacolod City its due shares in the proceeds of the utilization and development of the natural wealth within its area.

A resolution authored by Councilor Renecito Novero was approved the SP yesterday, urging BACIWA and Prime Water to comply with the mandatory provisions of Section 7, Article X of the Philippine Constitution, which provides that local governments will be entitled to an equitable share of the proceeds of the utilization and development of national wealth within their respective areas, including sharing the same with the inhabitants by way of direct benefits.

This constitutional mandate is implemented by Section 291, 292, 293 and 286 of the Local Government Code (R.A.  No. 7160) based on the following formula: 1 percent of the gross sales or receipts of the preceding calendar year; or 40 percent of the mining taxes, royalties, forestry, and fishery charges and such other taxes, fees or charges, including related surcharges, interests, or fines the government agency or government owned or controlled corporation (GOCC) would have paid if it were not otherwise exempt, it said.

For 37 years since the effectivity of the 1987 Philippine Constitution and 33 years from the effectivity of R.A. No. 7160 to date, BACIWA has not remitted any share to the City of Bacolod from the proceeds of the water resources which it (BACIWA) has derived from the territorial jurisdiction of the city, the resolution said.

The SP is also requesting BACIWA/Prime Water to furnish the City of Bacolod its records which show the pertinent proceeds of sales of all water resources derived from the territorial jurisdiction of Bacolod City in all the preceding fiscal years to date and in every fiscal year henceforth, the resolution added.*

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