Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Tax Ordinance No. 001, S. 2014 Is Null And Void

Tax Ordinance No. 001,
S. 2014 Is Null And Void

Tax Ordinance No. 001, S. 2014 Is Null And Void

“Wherefore, premises considered, the instant appeals are hereby granted. Tax Ordinance No. 001, S. 2014 is hereby declared Null and Void for being contrary to law, as it did not comply with the procedural requirements under the Local Government Code and its Implementing Rules and Regulations. So Ordered.”

The above quoted decision is signed by Hon. Leila M. De Lima, Secretary of the Department of Justice on two (2) Petitions - Appeal for the declaration of nullity or unconstitutionality of Tax Ordinance No. 001, S. 2014 promulgated by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of the Province of Aklan. “An Ordinance Fixing the Schedule of the New Base Values of Real Properties for the Seventeen (17) municipalities of Aklan for the 2015 General Revision Allowed In Law To Include Special Base Market Valuation In Boracay Island, and Caticlan Both In Malay, Aklan, Barangay Union in Nabas, Aklan and Metro Kalibo composed of barangay Poblacion, Estancia, Andagao and New Buswang.”

The information on this alleged Resolution is certified xerox copy which is signed by Joel A. Ocay, Chief, Records Management Section. It did not say what office. I hope an authentic copy of the Resolution from the Department of Justice duly signed by authorized personnel will be made available as soon as possible.
The first Petition, Case No. 08-2014, was filed with the Department of Justice on October 20, 2014 by New Washington Mayor Edgar R. Peralta for and in behalf of the people of Aklan.

The second Petition, Case No. 09-2014 was filed with the Department of Justice on October 20, 2014 by Hon. Rodson F. Mayor, member, Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Aklan.

According to the Resolution, the two cases No. 08-2014, and No. 09-2014 are of the same subject matter, hence the two were consolidated and ruled upon them jointly.

The Dept. of Justice on October 15, 2014, issued to the appellees a Notice of Appeal and an Order to comment on the Case No. 08-2014 within 10 days from receipt thereof. The appellees are Gov. Florencio T. Miraflores, Vice Gov. Gabrielle V. Calizo, SP members Hon. Jose Enrique M. Miraflores, Hon. Ramon S. Gelito, Hon. Roberto M. Garcia, Jr., Hon. Nelson D. Santamaria, Hon. Emmanuel Soviet Russia A. Dela Cruz, Hon. Lillian Q. Tirol, Hon. Plaridel M. Morania, and Hon. Apolinar C. Cleope. They received the notice and order on October 20, 2014.

On October 23, 2014, the Dept. of Justice issued again to the appellees another notice of appeal and an order to comment on Case No. 09-2014 which the appellees received on October 29, 2014.
In both cases, the Dept. of Justice received “no response in the form of comment or motion for extension of the period to file a comment - - - from the appellees within ten (10) days reglementary period. Hence, both petitions were deemed submitted for resolution.”

In Case No. 08-2014, the appellant Mayor Peralta claimed that the SP Aklan failed to comply with the requirements provided under the Local Government Code and its Implementing Rules and Regulations. According to Peralta, the ordinance violates the fundamental principle of uniformity in the imposition of a sound tax system, creates a new political unit by creating a political subdivision on a particular district, imposes double taxation, it contains insertions on material provisions made after preliminary deliberation, and it disregards constitutionality and statutorily mandated tax exemptions.

As to Case No. 09-2014, Hon. Mayor claims that “Tax Ordinance No. 001, S. 2014 did not comply with the procedural requirements of the various provisions of the Local Government Code and its Implementing Rules and Regulations; its enactment violates due process; and the appellees disregarded public clamor to reconsider and renew Tax Ordinance No. 001, S. 2014.”

Ruling

The Dept. of Justice resolved the two cases in favor of the Appellants: Mayor Edgar R. Peralta and SP member Rodson F. Mayor. The Dept. of Justice “observed more procedural errors after passage of Tax Ordinance No. 001 as alleged in the petitions.” Hence, Tax Ordinance No. 001, S. 2014 is declared null and void by the Dept. of Justice. The Resolution was signed by Secretary Leila M. De Lima of the Dept. of Justice. /MP

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