WITH the increasing number of boarding houses, Kabayan lawmakers enacted a law regulating the operation and maintenance of boarding houses in the town.
“There is an increasing number of boarding houses in the municipality which respond to the temporary dwelling needs of students, workers, laborers or professionals while away from their homes which necessitates the enforcement of basic standards for an appropriate and proper housing conditions as required by laws and policies,” stated the Municipal Ordinance 136-19 known as Kabayan ordinance on Boarding Houses authored by Councilors Olivia Salbino, Orlan Kelcho, Marlon Nginsayan, Mike Badival and Orlando Molitas.
The councilors stated the biggest number of occupants of boarding houses in the municipality are students or adolescents prompting the need to regulate these establishments to protect their rights especially those under 18 years old.
Under the ordinance, all boarding houses, apartments and bed spaces in the jurisdiction of Kabayan must follow regulatory policies of securing business license and permit application, building inspection certification or written statement issued by the municipal engineer to that effect that the structure operates for purpose of boarding house and does not pose danger to life and property and in conformity with National Building Code provisions.
The ordinance covers all rooms, passageways, stairways and other parts of the boarding house to be properly and adequately lighted and for owners or operators of boarding houses be allowed to accommodate a number of occupants based on the size and space of room as determined by the municipal engineer.
Occupant and operator of boarding houses must also execute a written contract indicating the period of stay, rate per month and nature of facilities.
Moreover, there must be provisions for safe, potable, adequate water supply, fire escape, fire protection equipment and fire safety programs.
All boarding houses must maintain proper cleanliness and sanitation in compliance with PD 856. First aid medicine and equipment and a register of boarders must also be maintained.
The ordinance added occupants to strictly comply with proper waste segregation in accordance with RA 9003.
All boarding houses are also required to provide own set rules and regulations for the compliance of their boarders.
Violations of any provision of the ordinance entails a fine of at least P1,000 for first offense, P2,000 for second offense and P2,500 for third and succeeding offenses or imprisonment of not more than six months.
The municipal ordinance was referred during the 142nd Regular Meeting of the Provincial Board of Benguet on June 3 and to be reviewed by the respective committees.