ORTIGOZA: Dagupan City a laggard? Blame the old tax law

February 27, 2012 at 9:20 am 1 comment

Last week I bumped into Dagupan City mayor Benjie S. Lim at the city plaza.
“Dagupan City is already third to the cities of Urdaneta and Laoag in terms of budget in the past years. What’s your take on this?”
Mayor Lim acknowledged that the two cities in Region 1 are indeed “richer” if based on their respective fiscal appropriations annually because both of these cities have a bigger population and thus receive a bigger portion of the Internal Revenue Allotment.
IRA is the share of the local government units on taxes paid by taxpayers to the national government.
In my recent column “Top Dagupan Official admits Urdaneta City is richer” (that could be accessed at https://northwatch.wordpress.com/2012/02/01/ortigoza-top-dagupan-official-admits-urdaneta-city-is-richer/), I wrote there that the cities of Urdaneta and Laoag in the year 2011 have an appropriation of P671 million and P600 million while the Bangus City contents herself with a re-enacted 2010 budget of P490 million.
“Can we still eclipse them and regain our status as the premier city in Region 1?” I posed.
Lim optimistically answered in the affirmative. He cited the need to increase taxes on the Real Property Tax particularly the infrastructures that have a very low valuation based on the old Revised Revenue Code of 2004.
Former Senator Ernesto Maceda, who was with former House Speaker Joe and Rep. Gina de Venecia recently, told the crowd who witnessed the mass wedding in San Jacinto, Pangasinan that because Speaker Joe will seek a congressional seat next year, his spouse congresswoman Gina (Maceda’s sister-in-law) can either run as governor, mayor (Dagupan City) or seek another congressional seat in another district.
But in an earlier interview with Manay Gina, she told me that she considers running for the senate.
If she and Joe would be successful, Pangasinan got a double gain with the two de Venecias in congress.
Susmariosep, that would be countless of millions of pork (Priority Development & Assistance Funds) for us.
In case these happen, Joe and Gina would get P200 million pesos and P70 million annually.

Notwithstanding the tens of millions of pesos allocation they can get from government departments and agencies.
If JDV (moniker of Joe) chalked up for the sixth time the speakership, susmariosep, that’s another P2 billion speakers’ fund a year for him.
You asked former Mayor Roy Macanlalay how his town Calasiao benefited during Joe’s speakership in terms of his multi-million- peso gym and the de Venecia highway that crisscrosses his town even Calasiao is not part of JDV’s fourth (4th) congressional district’s fortress.
“Can the Foreign Currency Deposit Act (R.A No. 6426 that was requested to be amended by President Benigno Aquino III as urgent) catch-up the present impeachment trial versus Chief Justice Renato Corona?” I posed to Manong Ernie Maceda , an Ateneo de Manila Law and Harvard alumnus.
He answered in the negative.
He said it could no longer affect the present trial.
But media colleague Ronel de Vera, an alumnus of the poor version of U.P Law – University of Pangasinan- Law demad gilig na ilog Pantal (near the Pantal River), freaked out.
“Even if it can be expedited by the present administration, the amended FCDA (where the government can open the dollar account without Corona’s imprimatur) still the lawyers of the defense would block it with tongs and hammer as it would be a glaring violation of the basic constitutional right called Ex-Post Facto Law”.
I was taken aback, Diyos ko, Ronel talks sense this time.
The last time he talked; I threw myself in a tantrum. Why? He told Mayor Ayoy of San Carlos City that all his criminal cases in his first term were already extinguished after he won his second term. “Extinguishment of cases like that are applicable only for Administrative Law?” this another UP- demad gilig na ilog Pantal turned pinked by whispering to him.
Ex Post Facto Law, according to Ronel, that can be found at Section 22, Article XI of the 1987 Philippines Constitution discourages punishment to alleged offender like Corona
It is defined as criminal an act done before the passage of the law and which was innocent when done, and punishes such an act.
I thought that Corona is not covered by this law since his impeachment try is not a criminal trial, but when I browsed the annotation of the primer of the Philippines Constitution written and compiled by Father Joaquin Bernas, I saw jurisprudence that even a penalty in the administrative case is covered by the Ex-Post Facto Law.
“”A law is also penal law if it prescribes a burden equivalent to a criminal penalty (e.g, disqualification from the practice of a profession) even if such burden is imposed in an administrative proceeding (Pascual v. Board of Medical Examiners, 28 SCRA 344 (1909).”
Who says now that an alumnus of Ateneo de Manila-Law and Harvard is much better than a drinkin’ spree and night clubs scarred graduate of University of Pangasinan-Law?
I believed however that the stalemate on the dollar account of the chief justice has a political repercussion on senators who would not vote for the impeachment of the chief justice.
“Would the P37 million peso deposit that was recently exposed by the prosecution pressure the senators to vote for his eventual impeachment because whether we liked it or not the man in the street understands that the Chief Justice is a bad guy whose salaries do not jibe with his bank deposit?” I asked former Senator Maceda.
Manong Ernie, a dyed-in-the- wool saluyot who hails from Ilocos Norte, told me it is not yet over until the defense panel starts to present their pieces of evidence.
“Besides, the P37 million is the account of Mrs. Corona,” he quipped.
So, that was it. As what old timers used to quip: “It ain’t over till the fat lady sings”.
(You can read my selected intriguing but thought-provoking columns at http://mortzortigoza.blogspot.com. You can send comments too at totomortz@yahoo.com).

Entry filed under: News.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Ray  |  February 28, 2012 at 8:05 pm

    Susmariosep!kung population pala ang basehan sa IRA share,mas malaki sana ang budget ng dagupan kesysa sa urdaneta at laoag kasi dagupan has bigger population than the 2 cities.atsaka mas madami ang businesses sa dagupan kaya nakapagtataka kung bkit mas malaki pa ang bugdet ng urdaneta at laoag.
    Kaya siguro di umuunlad ang dagupan ay dahil sa political dynasty.


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