By By Fernan A. Gianan
The SP’s failures, according to local assessors
posted 13-Jan-2019  ·  
335 views  ·   0 comments  ·  

There is something amiss with the Sangguniang Panlalawigan’s resolution enacting an ordinance suspending the implementation of Provincial Ordinance No. 004-2018 that approved the Schedule of Market Values of Real Properties in the province of Catanduanes for General Revision 2017.

This is the contention of most local assessment officials.

First, they said that the honorable SP members should have consulted first the local treasurers before putting up as a reason for the suspension the alleged negative impact on the efficiency of collection of real property taxes. They claim that on the whole, there was no decrease in the number of taxpayers trooping to pay their taxes and that the collection, as a percentage of the previous year’s number, actually increased.

Second, except for the Virac SB which failed to act on its review of the land values for the capital town, all other municipal councils passed resolutions interposing no objection to the higher values. This means it is only in the capital town, where the values doubled or tripled, that the opposition to the new SMV is concentrated.

Third, considering the almost-perfect acquiescence of the municipalities to the higher SMV and taking into account the effect of the higher property values on the taxes to be paid in the light of high inflation in the locality, the SP could have considered the staggered implementation of the increase and did away with the suspension. It could have mandated the collection of 40% of the new SMV this year, 70% in 2020 and the full 100% in 2021, so as to ease the burden on property owners.

Fourth, and most importantly, by suspending the resolution-ordinance approving the SMV for General Revision 2017, the SP left the local assessors with no values to base their assessments, as the new SMV has already been integrated into their computerized system.

What happens now to those who have already paid their real property taxes based on the higher SMV and used said legal document to boost the value of their assets in securing loans with financial institutions?

“Do not lecture us,” a senior PBM allegedly told local assessors who appeared before the legislative body as resource persons in the consideration of Provincial Ordinance No. 004-2018 before it was approved.

Had the board members listened at least to the suggestions of the local assessors, some of whom believed the new rates were abrupt and too high, it could have tempered the adverse reaction with a staggered implementation, or in the case of Virac, asked the negligent council again to review the values for the benefit of their constituents.

*****

Some social media users are raising doubts about the propriety of the provincial government’s declaration of a state of calamity.

    This is valid especially when the overall damage sustained by the island is compared with that of the other Bicol provinces which lost over a hundred lives.

    There were only 1,526 persons who evacuated during the passage of Usman and another 1,456 who were affected, the total a mere one percent of the 260,964 population on the island.

    Most of roads and highways that were blocked by over 80 landslides were already open to vehicular traffic  before New Year’s Day, thanks to the swift action of the DPWH Catanduanes Engineering District.

     The flash floods also receded within a few days, although if left large swathes of rice fields irreparably damaged, with over P12 million in agricultural produce lost.

*****

THREE SAMPLES. A 90-year old man goes to the doctor for his yearly physical with his wife tagging along.

When the doctor enters the examination room, he tells the old man, “I need a urine sample, a stool sample, and a sperm sample.”

The old man, being hard of hearing, looks at his wife and yells, “WHAT??? What did he say? What’s he want?”

His wife yells back, “He needs your underwear.”


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