By Hannah Torregoza
The Senate on Monday approved on third and final reading six bills converting Land Transportation Office (LTO) extension offices into regular licensing centers.
“Converting LTO extension offices into regular LTO district offices would, in effect, mean faster processing of transactions, and hopefully, shorter queues,” Senator Grace Poe, chair of the Senate committee on public services, said.
Poe earlier sponsored House Bill Nos. 4166, 3986, 3188, 3169, 1875 and 927 or the conversion of the LTO extension offices in San Pablo, Laguna, Balayan, Batangas, Malabon, Batangas City, Muntinlupa City and Kawit, Cavite.
During her sponsorship speech of the bills, the senator mentioned that the Malabon LTO extension office where only 16 personnel, borrowed from other district offices, serve 20 barangays in Malabon City and all drivers’ license transactions from Navotas City.
“The transactions which they handle on a daily basis have clearly exceeded their internal policy,” Poe said.
“Legislative action is needed as these extension offices were created merely through administrative orders thus, they are inherently limited in terms of capacity and budget,” she said.
However, Poe said she passage of the measure into law “is not a magic pill for all the problems of the LTO’s bureaucracy.”
“I will not hesitate to hold these offices accountable during the budget season if there are reports of inefficiency or corruption after this measure is enacted into law,” she said.
“These offices must not forget: with greater power comes greater accountability,” she stressed.