by Aileen P. Refuerzo
The city council approved the experimental rental rates for the Mines View Park multipurpose building to pave the way for the occupancy of the building by vendors occupying the park on a one-year experimental run.
The council earlier approved Resolution 30 s. 2013 giving Mayor Mauricio Domogan the imprimatur to conduct the one-year experimental operation using rental rates 50 percent lower than the original schedule.
The aldermen however refined the rates schedule by adopting some of the rates proposed by the vendors themselves.
The final experimental rates as submitted by the committee on market, trade and commerce are: Ground floor: frontage stalls, P2,500; inner stalls; P2,250; extra units, P3,500; Second floor: regular – P1,500; extra units — P2,500; Third floor: regular, P1,250; extra units,P2,000. For the fourth floor, regular is P1,000; extra units P1,500; and fastfood spaces, P1,250.
The city and the vendors figured in a deadlock over the rental fees after failing to agree on a common schedule.
Fianza said after three consultations with the vendors, the Local Finance Commitee agreed to lower the rates three times – the first by 20 percent; second by 30 percent and the latest by as much as 40 percent such that the proposed fees ranged from P1,200 to P3,000 from the original P2,500 to P5,500.
But the vendors pressed for lower rates saying the proposed fees by the city are still exorbitant considering the location of the building, the small sizes of the stalls and the five-month lean period in sales in the area. They clamored for a cut from 29 to 71 percent.
To break the deadlock, the committee finally last December recommended the conduct of an experimental operation using a lower rates schedule.
This will be subject to the conditions that the spaces on the fourth floor originally designed for plant and food vendors who are to be relocated in other areas of the building may be leased to others not necessarily members of the open market association and that a report on the conduct of the experiment shall be submitted to finalize the ordinance.
As per the guidelines in stall allocation, the city will give priority to the 73 legitimate members of the Mines View Open Market Vendors Association while the remaining stalls will be awarded to other legitimate stallholders listed in the memorandum of agreement between the city and the vendors.
The building which cost P50 million was conceived to solve the vending problem that hounded the Mines View Park and put back order in the area in the hope of reclaiming its status as a park and tourist hub.