July 18, 2024

The city council has approved Ordinance 106, s. 2021, which grants amnesty on penalties, fees, and charges of unpaid taxes/fees in Baguio up to this year.
The ordinance aims to help alleviate the financial burden of businessmen who were badly hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Section 192 of the Local Government Code gives local government units authority to grant tax exemptions, incentives, or reliefs under necessary terms and conditions.
The ordinance was submitted to the Office of the City Mayor for action.
In Resolution 557, s. 2021, the city council accorded status quo ante on all Burnham Park lease contracts or month-to-month extension until the final Burnham Park Development Plan is ready for execution.
The measure aims to give leaseholders enough time to adjust and prepare for changes while talking with the city for some doable solutions like deduction of rentals, cancellation of all penalties and interests, and condonation of rentals due to the pandemic as sanctioned under the general welfare clause of the Local Government Code.
The development of Burnham Park and its impending declaration as a national heritage site have some developmental impact on the businesses of leaseholders/tenants such as application of rental rates like/similar to those at Session Road and the City Public Market; adjustment on tenure of lease contracts; and bid requirements on current leases and payment of taxes.
Through joint Resolution 559, s. 2021, the City Planning and Development Office, the City Treasury Office, the City Buildings and Architecture Office, and the Permits and Licensing Division of the City Mayor’s Office were requested to implement Administrative Order 70, s. 2009 issued by then mayor Reinaldo Bautista in the processing of business permits.
The order sought to be implemented pertains to the issuance of business permits in special or justifiable circumstances like in cases of structures built prior to the effectivity of Presidential Decree 1096 or the National Building Code and pending townsite application, pending application for a building permit, sari-sari store or a small-scale business, and when there is a proof of ownership or a right of possession over the place of business.
The AO was issued “to prevent reduction on collections of taxes, fees and charges or loss of revenues for the city because of the non-issuance of business permit to business applicants who have not obtained building permits or operating on or within buildings/establishments not issued with building permits”
Referring to provisions of the Baguio City Tax Ordinance 2000-001, the AO revealed that the same Tax Ordinance does not strictly require building permit as necessary or a condition sine qua non for the issuance of a business permit, but for other purposes such as to deter construction of illegal structures.
The resolution added that in this challenging time of pandemic, many businesses are suffering from heavy losses but they continue to operate with or without business permits in the hope to generate revenue for the needs of their families and those operating without business permit have to do it for survival, but the city continues to suffer the loss of revenue.
In joint Resolution 560, s. 2021, the city council asked the City Health Services Office to hire technical staff which include psychologists, mental health coordinators, administrative staff, and mental health responders to address mental health issues in the city pending the crafting of the implementing rules and regulations of Ordinance 29, s. 2021 or the city’s “Mental Health Care and Developmental Wellness Program.”
The appeal responds to the revelation of City Mental Health responder Ricky Ducas that for 2021, there were 31 completed suicides mostly by the youth, including a conjugal suicide that were directly related to mental health issues due to the pandemic.
For the promotion of the health and welfare of animals, the body in Resolution 556, s. 2021 has called on all pet owners in the city to have their pets spayed and neutered in the City Veterinary and Agriculture Office for free.
CVAO was also tasked to conduct weekly spaying and neutering of pets in its premises or in the barangays for better and wider accomplishment.