Add’l tax proposed for urban realty-A A +A
Saturday, November 26, 2011
CEBU City’s Local Housing Board wrote the City Council and recommended imposing the socialized housing tax.
“The money will be used for socialized housing programs and projects, which will benefit urban poor families,” said Councilor Alvin Dizon, committee on housing chairman and Local Housing Board member.
The socialized housing tax is mandated under Section 43 of Republic Act (RA) 7279, or the Urban Development and Housing Act of 1992.
It authorizes all local government units (LGUs) to impose an additional one-half percent (0.5 %) tax on the assessed value of all lands in urban areas in excess of P50,000.
If implemented, the City is set to earn an additional P150 million in real property tax yearly, which will accrue to a special account since it can only be utilized for specific purposes.
The guidelines for the implementation of the socialized housing tax are laid down under a circular issued by the Department of Finance on April 10, 1997.
Local Finance Circular 1-97 stipulates that the LGU can use the socialized housing tax for land purchasing and land banking; improvement of current socialized housing facilities; land development; construction of core houses, sanitary cores, medium-rise buildings and other similar structures; and financing or joint venture agreement between LGUs and the National Housing Authority or the private sector.
The circular said the local assessor will be tasked to undertake an inventory of lands within its territorial jurisdiction, which shall be subject to the levy of the socialized housing tax.
In its letter, the Local Housing Board hopes one of the council members will sponsor an ordinance that will allow the socialized housing tax to be imposed in the city.
Dizon said he is ready to sponsor the ordinance.
During their regular session last Wednesday, the council referred the Local Housing Board’s letter to the City Treasurer’s Office for comments.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on November 27, 2011.