P1.1B uncollected real property taxes-A A +A
Wednesday, February 12, 2014
DAVAO City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte urged City Treasurer Rodrigo Riola to “shape up and step up the collection” or step down from his office after finding out that the city has uncollected real property taxes amounting to P1.115 billion.
Based on his records obtained from the City Treasurer’s Office, Duterte said the P1,115,161,330.44 tax delinquent covers only seven political districts with a total of 60,350 accounts. Davao City has a total of 11 political districts.
The seven political districts are: Poblacion (P483,637,744.90), Agdao (P99,629,015.81), Baguio (P15,172,023.21), Buhangin (P359,813,423.26), Bunawan (P94,197,059.69), Calinan (P52,642,397.13), and Paquibato (P10,069,666.44).
In his privilege speech, Duterte said he is determined to look into where the “problem” lies.
The problem, he said, might be with the taxpayers or with the collection of taxes at the City Treasurer’s Office.
“Now, if the problem lies with the collection of taxes, then the City Treasurer’s Office must shape up and step up the collection. There have been several instances in the past that complaints against your office have been brought to me. You must be deaf not to hear these,” he said.
He added, “I strongly suggest that you revisit the provisions of City Ordinance No. 185-05 Series of 2005, otherwise known as The 2005 Revenue Code of the City of Davao. You have all what you need to ensure collection such as but not limited to levy on properties and sale at public auction.”
“Niabot na ta ug P1 billion. Dako na kaayo na. Akong tambag sa City Treasurer, trabahoa na. Hawa diha ug di nimo kaya. Ana ra na (It has reached P1 billion. The amount is too big. To our City Treasurer, work on it. Resign from office if you cannot do it),” Duterte said.
The “partial list” that contains the corporations and individuals with delinquencies reached P679,852,517.64.
“Is it a problem of inefficient tax collection? Or are these delinquent taxpayers just willingly refuse to pay?” Duterte asked.
He said these delinquencies lead to insufficient city budget.
“Now if the problem lies with the taxpayer, I strongly suggest that you pay the taxes due to you. For the real property taxes, you have until March 31, 2014 to settle it. Read the revenue Code of the City. You will realize that the local government has vast powers to guarantee payment,” Duterte said in his speech.
He added, “I hate to see the day that the City will be compelled to invoke its authority to oblige you to pay. I am talking about assessment of interest, levy on your properties or sale of the subject property at public auction.”
In his privilege speech, Councilor Danilo Dayanghirang, chairperson for committee on finance, ways and means, also reported before the Council his efforts to reach Riola regarding the discrepancy.
The privilege speeches of Duterte and Dayanghirang were passed on first reading under suspended rules on Tuesday.
The matter would be forwarded to proper committees for committee hearings in which all tackled related matters will be reviewed and investigated.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on February 12, 2014.