ORTIGOZA: Wizardry in passing the growth areas’ law

June 26, 2016 at 8:09 pm Leave a comment


 mortz-nw-colored32
I asked a chief of police of a burgeoning first class town how much the lowly policeman, a P01 or Police Officer-1, receives monthly.
“Mga P19,000,” he said.
I told him about powerful Mexican drug cartels Tijuana, Los Zetas (whose founding members were Mexican Special Forces trained at Fort Benning in USA) and Sinaloa bribing with huge amount of monies high government and police officials in Mexico.
“Is it possible that a big time drug pusher asked the P01 or those higher in ranks with him to turn the other cheek whenever they see drug pushers, under the watch of this big time seller, hawking  the illegal commodity in the street by giving them P50,000 each a month?,” I posed.
“Yes, but what I heard drug personalities give some of my police men P30,000 a month each. I was investigating this shenanigan because I was still new on my station,” he told me.
****
Unknown to many, there was brilliance on the seven votes that expedited the approval last June 6 by the Sangguniang Panlungsod (Council) of Dagupan City’s Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP).
 Except from Councilor Jigs Seen who inhibited himself, Councilors Maybelyn Fernandez, Jesus Canto, Netu Tamayo, Alvin Coquia, Jigs Seen, Marcelino Fernandez, and Marvin Fabia unanimously passed the much-needed law.
Earlier, the law’s opponents led by Vice Mayor Brian Lim and Councilors Red Erfe-Mejia, Guillermo Vallejos, and Alfie Fernandez joined the illegal adjournment of the session.
I called it illegal because Vice Mayor  Lim arbitrarily dismissed it while an agenda was being discussed and the dismissal was challenged by an objection from Councilor Netu Tamayo.
The councilors who approved the CLUP would end their term at noon of June 30.
Those who will succeed them will be those who were elected and reelected in the May 9 election.
If the CLUP and the approval of the June 21 land zones for the conversion of the agricultural lands to commercial happened with the new set of councilors, the CLUP and the zoning ordinance could not be approved.
Why?

With Seen (brother-in-law of the mayor) inhibiting himself because his family owns some real properties in the CLUP’s area, Mayor Fernandez would have six aldermen as allies who could fail to muster the needed majority to pass the much needed ordinances.
In La Carlota City versus Rex Rojo (click jurisprudence here), the Supreme Court said that the manner of counting for qualified majority includes the presiding officer like the vice mayor even he only votes for a tie of votes of the aldermen.
 In Dagupan City, the complete majority, including the vice mayor, should be seven versus four.
With the new set of councilors allied with the mayor, she has Maybelyn Fernandez, Dennis Canto, Netu Tamayo, Alvin Coquia, Jigs Seen, and Marvin Fabia  while the  opposition  have Lim, Vallejos, Mejia, Nick Aquino, and Chito Samson.
It means there  would be seven councilors including the president of the Liga ng Barangay on the side of the mayor while four aldermen on the side of Vice Mayor Lim.
But in the old set of solons at the legislative body whose official function would expire at noon of June 30, without Seen, the mayor has still seven aldermen versus the three opposition dads in Alfie Fernandez, Vallejos, and Mejia for the CLUP.
This number game’s chutzpah would be repeated again on June 21 where they pass the needed ordinance to convert those agricultural lands to commercial purposes as linchpin to draw investors like Ayala Estates, SM Properties,  Megaworld Business Park , others that will provide jobs for the people in Pangasinan.
Mayor Belen told the press last June 8 that SM is welcome in Dagupan City.
Whoever advised the mayor to fast tract the approval of these two flagship ordinances was a political wizard!
“Bigyan ng jacket at cellphone iyang tao na iyan!”
***
But wait, what is this? I found it disturbing that the CLUP was approved in June 6 on the second and third readings.
“Was it not illegal to approve two ordinances in one session?” I posed to Councillor Tamayo before the press conference called by the mayor at the Stadia last June 8.

“Okay lang iyon,” he told me.
My poser was prompted by Section 52 paragraph  C of the Local Government Code that says “ No two (2) sessions, regular or special, may be held in a single day.”
Then I read at Northern Watch’s “Amid controversy, Dagupan passes land use plan” bylined by our editor Yolly Fuertes that Vice Mayor Lim will be suing the pro administration aldermen based on this section.
My advice to the pro-Fernandez council members: Since they still control the majority in the June 21 session, they should include in their agenda the third reading of the CLUP and vote for it to cure the infirmities brought by the June 6 session and thus avoid unnecessary legal monkey wrench thrown to their direction.
(You can read my selected columns at http://mortzortigoza.blogspot.com and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too attotomortz@yahoo.com)
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Entry filed under: News.

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