Council defers approval of watershed code-A A +A
Thursday, January 17, 2013
THE Davao City Council deferred Tuesday its final approval of the amendment to the existing Watershed Code because of legal impediments.
The measure was set for third and final reading when majority floor leader Councilor Tomas Monteverde IV moved for the deferment of the proposed ordinance amending Ordinance 0310-07, Series of 2007, otherwise known as the "Watershed Protection, Conservation and Management Ordinance," by amending Article 9 and for related purposes, due to some "legal issues."
The ordinance, authored by Councilor Pilar Braga, was approved on second reading during the regular session last January 8 and was supposedly subject for third and final reading on Tuesday.
Braga refused to comment on the deferment of the measure ordinance since “there are still issues that need to be ironed out between the majority floor leader and the mayor.”
Monteverde told reporters they had to defer it since they have pointed out some legal issues on the measure.
"I cannot be specific pero kani man gud daw Watershed Code naa daw study nga ang purpose ani is to delineate some areas na matawag nato an critical areas sa Watershed. This came up after second reading," he said.
Monteverde said they need to verify this through assessment before the City Legal Office and the City Planning and Development Office.
"We just have to be sure kay murag mao gyud baya ni ang gibantayan sa city. We cannot afford to pass an ordinance kung naay mga questions," Monteverde said.
He said Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio might have some concerns over the matter.
Based on the draft of the proposed ordinance, the amendment on the article 9 (Prohibited Acts) of the existing ordinance is to add exemption on the identified environmentally critical areas in conservation areas (land conservation to whatever classification; use of motorized equipment without permit from the Watershed Management Council; constructing or maintaining any kind of structure, fence or enclosure and conducting any business enterprise) and agro-forestry areas/agricultural non-tillage areas (land conservation to whatever classification).
The amended version of the provision states that the exemption applies to "the purpose of putting up infrastructure and facilities for the purpose of harnessing renewable energy resources."
"Provided further, that the applicant for conversion shall submit a written undertaking of its commitment to the principles of sustainability and employ methods that do not adversely affect the conservation areas; undertake to employ means to mitigate and minimize, if not eliminate, possible negative or adverse effect on the land to be converted; and undertake that it will promote watershed conservation, protection and sustainability practices," the amended version read.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on January 17, 2013.