THE Senate Committee on Local Government has approved a bill seeking to “fine-tune” and revise the Baguio City charter, subject to input from a technical working group (TWG) specifically created for the matter at hand.
According to committee chair Senator Francis Tolentino, the bill will supposedly include revisions to provisions on territorial boundaries, city officials, boards and councils, and ancestral lands in Senate Bill no. 2163.
“The committee would convene a technical working group to fine-tune some of the provisions the Chair just mentioned while we wait for position papers coming from DENR (Department of Environment and Natural Resources), NCIP (National Commission on Indigenous Peoples), BCDA (Bases Conversion and Development Authority), and perhaps the City Council and the Camp John Hay authorities,” the senator said.
The TWG in question is slated to include members of the Senate Committee on Local Government, Baguio’s legal officer, and members of the Land Management Bureau, the Department of the Interior and Local Government, BCDA, Camp John Hay authorities, and the office of Baguio City Rep. Mark Go. It is set to convene in Baguio at a yet unspecified date.
The bill to alter the Baguio City charter was introduced by Senator Imee Marcos and supposedly includes measures to ensure effective implementation of the city’s land use and development plan, settle boundary disputes with the municipality of Tuba, address problems in disposition of alienable and disposable public lands in the city, and create a “more responsive” taxation system.
The bill also states that the DENR will remain the sole authority over alienable and disposable lands in the city.
Marcos also stated that the bill will not interfere with the disposition of public properties from the BCDA.