Quezon City proposes to suspend property value hike

MANILA Despite the favorable ruling of the Supreme Court (SC), the Quezon City Council is proposing to suspend the implementation of an ordinance mandating the increase in fair market values (FMVs) of properties due to effects of inflation caused by the Tax Reform Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law.

After two years, the TRO (temporary restraining order) was lifted and we can actually proceed with implementing the updated fair market values, but we would be remiss in our duties if we do that now, Quezon City Council Majority Floor Leader Franz Pumaren said in a press conference on Friday.

We don't want to burden the people more, Pumaren added.

The city council official noted that if the ordinance is implemented, the city government is expected to generate an income of PHP200 million to PHP300 million for the first year of implementation and would increase to PHP700 million in 2019.

The revision would increase the real property tax of property owners in Quezon City, but since the assessment level, as set by the City Assessor's Office, has been reduced from 18 percent to 5 percent, the actual increase in real property tax would significantly decrease.

We don't have yet a copy of the SC ruling, Pumaren said.

Quezon City Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte, presiding officer of the Quezon City Council, would not comment on the matter as she is now acting mayor as Mayor Herbert Bautista is on an official trip to Germany.

Ordinance No. SP-2556, S-2016, enacts the updated schedule of FMVs and it is expected to marginally increase the real property taxes of properties in the city.

It was put on hold in 2016 due to a TRO issued by the SC following a petition filed by the Alliance of Quezon City Homeowners Association, Inc. (AQCHI), questioning the legality of the ordinance.

In its petition, the AQCHI admitted that it lacked the juridical personality to sue since its certificate of registration from the Securities and Exchange Commission had been revoked. It is also not recognized by the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board.

The TRO was lifted by the SC last Sept. 18 and ruled in favor of the Quezon City government.

In its ruling, the SC said the technicality rendered the case dismissible since only natural or juridical persons or entities authorized by law have the legal capacity to file the petition. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency

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