By FRED M. LOBO
President Duterte has abolished the corruption-tainted Road Board.
No more milking cow for corrupt officials, he said.
The President finally signed into law Republic Act No. 11239 transferring the rights, assets, and liabilities of the abolished Road Board to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
Henceforth, motor vehicle user’s charge (MVUC) collection will be remitted to the National Treasury.
Duterte said the abolition of the Road Board was meant to stop corruption in the agency and
to streamline government services.
No more Road Board to implement MVUC and questionably manage funds collected from motor vehicle owners, he added.
Under RA 11239, the DPWH will absorb the employees of the abolished Road Board without diminution of their salaries and other benefits
Employees separated from the service as a result of the abolition will receive separation benefits, Duterte assured..
“The DPWH shall, by virtue of this act, be subrogated to all the rights and assume all the obligations and liabilities of the Road Board,” the law further provided..
“All records, property, assets, equipment, and funds of the Road Board, including unexpended appropriations or allocations, shall be transferred to the DPWH,” it added.
All funds shall now be remitted to the National Treasury under a special account in the General Fund.
MVUC funds will be earmarked solely for the construction, upgrading, repair and rehabilitation of roads, bridges, and road drainage included in the annual General Appropriations Act.
The secretaries of the Department of Budget and Management, the DPWH, and the Department of Transportation have been directed to promulgate the implementing rules and regulations of the new law.
Time for wise and efficient use of the MVUC special fund. Same with other government funds.
The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) ordered 178 local government units (LGU) covered by the Manila Bay Watershed area to revoke the business permits of companies found violating environmental laws.
No more bay polluters, DILG said.
DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said in a memorandum that all mayors of local government units (LGUs) in the National Capital Region (NCR), Central Luzon, and Calabarzon must ensure that all establishments in their areas are compliant with pertinent provisions of the National Building Code, the Fire Code, the Code on Sanitation, and other related laws and regulations.
Comply or perish, he said.
DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said the massive abuse committed on Manila Bay requires the full cooperation of concerned government agencies, LGUs, and the public to fully rehabilitate Manila Bay.
Manila Bay rehab is a tough job to do, he admitted..
Malaya said that with the Ano directive, all LGUs should act with dispatch on the enforcement orders from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA), and other government agencies.
“All LGUs should revoke or cancel permits of establishments found to have committed violations and/or are non-compliant with environmental and other applicable laws,” he said.
“The DENR and LLDA have started the inspection of commercial establishments last January 27, 2019, to ensure their compliance with environmental laws. They have issued Cease and Desist Orders and Notices of Violations to various establishments,” Malaya said.
“All concerned LGUs should immediately act on the findings of the DENR and LLDA and revoke or suspend the business permits they have issued, as may be applicable,” Malaya stressed.
“The Supreme Court has ruled that a business permit is subject to the regulation of the state and may therefore be revoked or withdrawn if there is cause to do so,” he added.
Translation: A business or mayor’s permit is not a right, just a privilege.
Año instructed the DILG regional directors of NCR, Central Luzon, and Calabarzon to report to him LGUs and local chief executives (LCEs) who fail to abide by his directive, plus barangays that do not conduct weekly clean-up drives in their localities.