Market stalls rental too high: vendors-A A +A
Monday, August 18, 2014
A MOVE that seeks to increase stall rentals and other fees in all markets in the city is being pushed in the Cebu City Council.
However, several vendors oppose the move, saying the increase is almost 1,000 percent over the present rate.
During its recent regular session, the legislative body tackled the proposed ordinance of Alvin Arcilla, instituting the Cebu City Market Code of 2014, repealing City Ordinance 1486 or the Revised Market Code of Cebu City.
In a public hearing, Erwin Gok-ong of the Cebu Market Vendors Cooperative asked the council to reconsider the proposed increase because it is too much.
He said the current rate for stall rentals is P3.50 per square meter per day, but will now be increased to P30 for primary stalls, P25 for secondary stalls and P20 for tertiary stalls.
Primary stalls are those that are immediately facing a busy thoroughfare or those that are along the entrance and exits of the markets.
Secondary stalls are those that are next in line to primary stalls while tertiary stalls are those which are located in the inner portion of a market.
The increase in stall rentals will cover Carbon Market Complex, Freedom Park Market, Warwick Barracks Market, Taboan Market, Pardo Market, F. Ramos Market, T. Padilla Market and Cebu Fish Market.
If they own a 100-sq.-m. primary stall, they will be paying at least P90,000 a month for the rental if the increase will be approved, Gok-ong said.
Because of this, Gok-ong asked the council to increase only 50 percent of the current rate.
Like Gok-ong, Jamie Oca of the Freedom Traders Multipurpose Cooperative said the increase on stall rentals is high.
Oca asked the council to reconsider it and just make the increase 25 percent of the current rate.
“Kung dako kaayo ang increase, mo-mahal samot ang mga buwak diha sa Freedom Park.
Daghan gyud kaayo ang maapektuhan (If the increase is that big, the flowers in Freedom Park will be very expensive. Many will be affected),” he said.
The two groups also asked the council to consider the entrance fees for any goods that will be brought to the public markets by transient vendors, saying the rate is also high.
The proposed ordinance seeks to collect P15 per sack of rice, feeds, salt and sugar brought to the markets, P25 per box of fruits and vegetables, P15 per kilo of first-class fish, P10 per kilo of second-class fish, P5 per kilo of third-class fish and P50 per box of shrimps, squids and prawns among others.
They said it will have a huge effect on their net profit.
Market Operations Division Chief Racquel Arce, who also appeared before the council, explained that the increase is high because they have not amended the market code for almost 20 years. The present rate is being implemented since 1992 yet.
“Kung buot huna-hunaon ang increase nga P20 for 20 years is piso ra na increase kada tuig. Hinaut open-minded lang pod ang mga negosyante (If you think about it, the increase of P20 after 20 years means a one-peso increase per year. Hope the businessmen are open-minded),” she said.
She said, though, that they are still amenable to any suggestions from the vendors regarding the new rates.
The vendors are asking the market authority to first consult the stakeholders before the council will approve the proposed legislation.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 19, 2014.