May 24, 2024

The city council approved an ordinance that updated the fees being charged by the city from couples intending to marry in Baguio, those intending to cut trees, and those that transport lumber.

Ordinance 73, s. 2023 amended sections 239, 251, and 255 of Ordinance 18, s. of 2016 or the Environment Code.

Under amendatory ordinance that will take effect on Sept. 21, couples intending to marry in the city will be required to plant at least one tree at a place designated by the City Environment and Parks Management Office. The Cepmo shall supervise the planting of trees and shall certify to the Office of the Local Civil Registrar that said provision has been complied with, as a prerequisite before a marriage license is be issued.

A certification fee of P100 shall be collected by the local government for the said purpose.

A government employee that issues a marriage license in violation of the provision will be dismissed from service.

On the other hand, upon approval of the permit to cut, retrieve, or remove a tree, the permittee is required to pay  P700 per cubic meter or fraction thereof based on the tree to be cut, retrieved, or removed.

National and local government agencies are exempt from the fees under the revised provision.

The ordinance states that logs, lumber, timber and firewood to be transported must be covered with a transport permit with supporting documents such as certificate of timber of origin and tree cutting permit.

Permit to transport must be signed and issued by the Office of the Mayor upon recommendation of the Cepmo.

The ordinance added the permit to transport shall be charged with a fee of P300 for every cubic meter or a fraction thereof. Payment shall be made at the City Treasury Office

According to the ordinance, to support the increasing cost of seedlings and to maintain and upgrade its public service operations, there is a need to impose increased rates as requested by the Cepmo.

It explained the fees being collected by the local government have remained the lowest in comparison to those being collected by other highly urbanized cities and even municipalities. – PIO release