THE Commission on Audit (COA) has commended the City Government of San Fernando headed by Mayor Edwin “EdSa” Santiago for the continuous and timely distribution of Real Property Tax (RPT) shares to the 35 barangays, ensuring the efficient delivery of services of concerned component villages.
Recently, Santiago requested for a special audit of the RPT shares, after mayoralty aspirant and Association of Barangay Captains president Vilma Caluag questioned through the media the alleged “discrepancies” in the allocation and distribution of RPT shares.
But the COA, in Audit Observation Memorandum (AOM) No. 2019-22 dated February 12, 2019, stated that “the 30 percent component share of barangays from the collection of real property taxes in CY 2018 were fully and promptly distributed, in compliance with Section 271 of Republic Act (RA) 7160, otherwise known as the Local Government Code of the Philippines, enabling the use of the fund for various barangay projects.”
The memorandum was signed by Audit Team Leader Eleonor DC Luna and Supervising Auditor Josefina M. Serrano and received by City Accountant Maria Gisel P. Rivera on March 3, 2019,
The COA noted in the AOM that proper management of local government units’ (LGUs) taxing and revenue raising power is necessary in order to stimulate progress through programs, projects and activities to boost economic growth.
The COA-AOM stressed that one of the main sources of revenue of all LGUs is the collection of RPT which is shared by the city or municipality and its component barangays.
The COA cited Section 271 of RA 7160 which explicitly provides the distribution on the proceeds from the collections of RPT which states that 30 percent shall be distributed among the component barangays of the city or municipality where the property is located in the following manner: 50 percent shall accrue to the barangay where the property is located; 50 percent shall accrue equally to all component barangays of the city or municipality; and the share of each barangay shall be released, without the need of any further action, directly to the barangay treasurer on a quarterly basis within five days after the end of each quarter and shall not be subject to any lien or holdback for whatever purpose.
“Our audit disclosed that the respective shares of the 35 barangays since July 2018 up to the current month were all entirely and fully transferred to their respective account on a monthly basis by way of auto debit or credit function of the Land Bank of the Philippines. However, RPT shares from January to June of last year were only released in August of 2018 since during this period, the Geographical Information System for RPT collections had been undergoing a parallel testing wherein manual encoding of information on RPT collections was simultaneously done to generate accurate reports which include the distribution of RPT shares,” the COA said in the AOM.
Among the more prominent in RPT collections shown in the AOM CY 2018 RPT summary included Caluag’s Barangay Dolores with total collections of P8,632,229.03 (with P1,294,834.35 as 50 percent share on own collections, P285,676.06 as 50 percent equal sharing and P1,580,510.41 as total barangay share); Barangay Sindalan with P6,433,594.95 (P965,039.24 as 50 percent share on own collections, P285,676.06 as 50 percent equal sharing and P1,250,715.30 as total barangay share); Barangay San Agustin with P5,798,001.67 (P869,700.25 as 50 percent share on own collections, P285,676.06 50 percent equal sharing and P1,155,376.31 as total barangay share); Barangay Telabastagan with P5,544,854.98 (P831,728.25 as 50 percent share on own collections, P285,676.06 as 50 percent equal sharing and P1,117,404.31 as total barangay share); Barangay Baliti with P4,461,508.55 (P669,226.28 as 50 percent share on own collections, P285,676.06 as 50 percent equal sharing and 954,902.34 as total barangay share); and Barangay San Jose with P4,094,733.23 (P614,209.98 as 50 percent share on own collections, P285,676.06 50 percent equal sharing and 899,886.04 as total barangay share).
“It is noteworthy to mention that the city promptly transferred the barangay shares on a monthly basis which is much earlier than the required quarterly release thereof. We commend the city for their efforts in reconciling the amounts generated by the system with the actual collections to ensure accuracy of reports,” the COA said.
“The full and prompt transfer of barangay shares on RPT collection enabled the barangays to timely use the funds for beneficial projects and activities for their constituents,” COA concluded in the AOM. (JTD)