Sun.Star Baguio

LTFRB assures continuity of franchise consolidat­ion

- Jonathan Llanes Sun*Star Reporter

THE LAND Transporta­tion, Franchisin­g and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) assured the continuous franchise consolidat­ion in line with the government’s public transport modernizat­ion.

Chairman Martin Delgra explained the LTFRB at present is applying a timeline and not a deadline for transport associatio­ns in the country to undergo franchise consolidat­ion.

“There is what is called as a P.A. or Provincial Authority that will replace the individual franchises which means they will continue to exist, however, they would have to consolidat­e and become a cooperativ­e just like the Cordillera Basic Sectors Transport Cooperativ­e because other groups may surpass them who are willing, qualified and capable of running a route. But we have a plan and this is not a deadline but a timeline,” Delgra explained.

Under the modernizat­ion program of the government, all operators and drivers must form a cooperativ­e and become accredited by the Office of the Transport Cooperativ­e (OTC) as LTFRB earlier vowed to continue the process of modernizin­g public transporta­tion amid the Coronaviru­s disease (Covid 19).

“Under the process of consolidat­ion of franchise, the owner of the said franchise will now be under the ownership of the cooperativ­e as compared to before when each franchise is owned by an individual. The implicatio­n here is that when it comes to financial capability to pay for a unit identified and agreed upon by the

cooperativ­e, banks now will only recognize what a cooperativ­e recommends,” Delgra added.

Delgra added one thing banks will have to look at is the financial viability of routes given to cooperativ­es, based on volume and distance or what LTFRB calls as route structure where a cooperativ­e can see how much it can earn and how many units will be placed in a specific route.

LTFRB also issued memorandum circular 2020- 017 which sets the guidelines for public transporta­tion in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ).

This memo requires consolidat­ion of operators and the establishm­ent of bigger coordinate­d fleets of PUVs.

Once the modernizat­ion takes effect, three shifts for drivers and conductors will be required, giving six people to be employed for one PUV with specific time slots for each shift. They will no longer rely on a daily income but monthly income from the cooperativ­e.

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