Taxation issues

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By Godofredo M. Roperos

Politics also

Tuesday, April 22, 2014


WHILE it may be said that the willingness of citizens to be taxed, and to pay their taxes, is one great feature of a nation’s strength among the people, still there is a measure of anathema that the notion of paying taxes has somehow attached itself to the concept of taxation.

Thus, it should not surprise a country’s taxpayer when the season for taxation is upon them every year. Neither should it surprise the government to encounter some people trying to evade paying their taxes.

Just the other day, there was the news story saying that the Provincial Capitol and five cities of the province have become self-sufficient, which meant that they have collected enough taxes to make them survive on their own without depending on handouts or financial support from the national government.

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But Cebu City, and the cities of Danao, Toledo, and Mandaue are urged, to “update property market values” based on a survey.

It is noteworthy to consider that, according to a survey, almost all of the cities in Cebu “spent less than the prescribed 20 percent of their Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) share for local development projects,” according to the Department of Finance (DOF).

Likewise, the DOF also praised other cities of the province for having improved their collections of other incomes from local sources, particularly from the so-called tax and non-tax revenues.

The point that we should highly appreciate from the inhabitants of Cebu island is the fact that the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has admitted that, somehow, the local governments have increased their own incomes at “home" so that they have become less dependent on support from national government sources.

Rather than be dependent on, say, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) for their infrastructure needs, they now do it themselves.

The DOF findings are based on the supposedly preliminary assessment surveys of its Bureau of Local Government Finance (BLGF) regarding the fiscal performance of all local government units (LGUs) particularly in the areas of revenue generation capability, local collection growth, expenditure management, reportorial compliance.

All these data would be collectively taken as the capability status of the LGUs at the town and barangay levels for fiscal sustainability scores.

Among all the LGUs in Cebu that were reportedly assessed, Cebu province “got an exceptional rating during the three-year assessment period that was still generally under the term of then governor Gwen Garcia. The province was considered among the first income class province.

The term of Gov. Hilario Davide III started on June 30, 2013. In any case, the momentum of this positive development has gone on, and continues to go on up to now.

The point here is that taxes and taxation in Cebu has become a positive part of the Cebuanos’ life, and is proving to be giving a rising noteworthy outlook to our on-going contemporary democratic governance.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on April 23, 2014.

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