Bilog fights tax in­crease

Sun.Star Baguio - - FRONT PAGE - Maria Elena Cata­jan Sun*Star Re­porter

VICE Mayor Edi­son Bilog is up in arms against the pro­posed tax in­crease in the city cit­ing a lack of ba­sis for the marked hike in real prop­erty prices.

“I am against the in­crease of real prop­erty tax, it has no ba­sis, it is merely based

on what the city as­ses­sor's of­fice want.”

Bilog said “To in­crease now the real prop­erty tax is too bur­den­some to our tax pay­ers as you could see the na­tional gov­ern­ment wants to in­crease the ex­cise tax of var­i­ous prod­ucts add this to the real prop­erty tax in­crease it would def­i­nitely lead to in­crease in the prices of all the prod­ucts in­clud­ing in­crease in monthly rentals of all board­ing houses.”

The last time the city in­creased taxes was in 1996 and has been called out by the Depart­ment of Fi­nance to ad­just prices.

Mayor Mau­rico Do­mo­gan is back­ing a two decade de­layed tax in­crease in a bid to put land value here at a stan­dard.

Today, the mar­ket value of a 100 square me­ter space at Ses­sion road is pegged at P5,000 which pays an an­nual tax of P5,773 when the new mar­ket val­ues are set, an­nual taxes for the same space will in­crease to P24,000.

At the Le­garda road area which is also now a com­mer­cial spot, a 100 square me­ter lot pays an an­nual tax of P3,234 with the new val­ues, tax will hike to P3,600.

For res­i­den­tial lots, a 100 square me­ter space now pays an an­nual tax of P25 with the val­u­a­tions set, tax will now be set to P216.

Bilog said if there will be an in­crease “It should be at a lower rate should be im­ple­mented in a stag­gered ba­sis, para hindi masyadong maram­daman ng at­ing kababayan.”

Com­mit­tee on Ap­pro­pri­a­tions and Fi­nance chair­man coun­cilor Elmer Da­tuin said the taxes have gone down con­sid­er­ably since the move was first made say­ing the orig­i­nal tax hike was seen to be 35 % which has gone down to 8% for com­mer­cial ar­eas while res­i­den­tial ar­eas were ini­tially pegged to spike to 12% but now has gone down to 6%.

Al­der­men are work­ing to fur­ther lower the taxes and have as­sured a stag­gered pay­ment scheme.

The vice mayor is also ad­vo­cat­ing to have pub­lic hear­ing held sep­a­rately “Con­ducted in all of the barangays of the city, in or­der to get the sen­ti­ments of not only a few of our con­stituents in the city.”

A pe­ti­tion is now out op­pos­ing the tax hike in the city.

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