January 29, 2023

The city council has passed Ordinance 31, s. 2021, which bans golf carts from plying/traveling in public roads or streets within the city.
The ordinance aims to end the practice of some foreigners, tourists, and even locals of using golf carts along Outlook Drive to South Drive and internal roads of Baguio Country Club and Camp John Hay, which is posing danger to themselves and the public.
The ordinance cited as basis Section 16 of the Local Government Code which mandates local government units to exercise necessary regulatory powers essential to the promotion of the general welfare, particularly safety and the maintenance of order within their respective territorial jurisdictions.
The only instances golf carts are allowed to ply or travel within the city’s public roads or streets are when crossing or traversing a public road or street going to another portion of the golf course area; during international or local tournaments or events sponsored by the city and with necessary permit from the city mayor; and when authorized by law or ordinance.
As used in the ordinance, golf cart refers to a small vehicle designed originally to carry golfers and their golf clubs around a golf course or on desert trails with less effort than walking.
A person-in-charge refers to the president or manager in case of a company, corporation, partnership or association offering golf cart services to their members, patrons, or customers; and the owner or operator in case of a single proprietorship offering golf cart services to its patrons or customers.
Violators or persons using golf carts in prohibited public roads and streets shall be fined P1,000 or imprisonment of not more than one month but not less than 20 days, or both at the discretion of the court on first offense; second offense – P1,500 or imprisonment of not more than three months but not less than one month, or both at the discretion of the court; and third and subsequent offenses – P2,000 or imprisonment of not more than six months but not less three months, or both at the discretion of the court.
Persons-in-charge who knowingly allow, abet or assist, authorize or tolerate the prohibited acts, or otherwise fail to fulfill their duties and obligations to inform and enforce the provisions of the ordinance shall be fined P1,500 or imprisonment of not more than three months but not less than one month, or both at the discretion of the court on first offense; P3,000 or imprisonment of not more than four months but not less than three months, or both at the discretion of the court – second offense; and P5,000 plus revocation of business permit, if applicable or imprisonment of not more than six months but not less four months, or both at the discretion of the court – third and subsequent offenses.
The ordinance shall be enforced by the Traffic Management Unit-Baguio City Police Office, the City Permits and Licensing Division, the City Mayor’s Office, and barangays concerned.
The ordinance was submitted to the city mayor for signature and shall take effect in accordance with the provisions of the Local Government Code of 1991.
The city council also approved Ordinance 30, s. 2021, which amends Ordinance 25, s. 2021 or the “P200 million supplemental funding for the continuing Covid-19 operations in Baguio,” to exclude for separate appropriation measure the P5M worth relocation kiosks for vendors at Burnham Park.”
In effect, the supposed P200M continuing Covid-19 operations fund in Ordinance 25 is reduced to P195M and was particularly re-appropriated to be used as continuing development fund – P33.9M; Brave Development Fund – P68.2M; DRRM-Trust Fund – P54.4; and DRRM-continuing – P4M.
In Resolution 095, s. 2021, the Social Security System Baguio Branch was requested to continuously inform and update their pensioners in the city through the City Social Welfare and Development Office, the Office of the Senior Citizens Affairs, the media, and other means regarding the remittances of their pensions.
The resolution also stressed for SSS to continuously inform their pensioners relative to any transaction it entered into that affects prompt remittances of pensions, as retirees depend on their monthly pensions which are not even enough for their maintenance medicines.
In the resolution, among the reasons cited by SSS-Baguio for the cause of delay on remittances of pensions is the transfer of SSS of its servicing branch from the Land Bank of the Philippines to the Development Bank of the Philippines for better service.
Under the disbursement scheme of DBP, the SSS-accredited rural banks have to secure further accreditation from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinasto become PesoNet participants where funds are electronically transferred to be able to service the remittances of their client-pensioners. The scheme was implemented effective October last year.
The accreditation requirement is delaying pension remittances by banks that are not yet accredited or awaiting approval of their application.
The SSS suggested to pensioners waiting for their remittances from banks with pending accreditation to open an account with any accredited or PesoNet participating bank to receive their pension.