IF BACOLOD City Mayor Evelio Leonardia will no longer assert his earlier "proposal" for an 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. curfew schedule, then the curfew hours in the city will now be from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m.
This, after the Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP), during its regular session, Wednesday, August 5, 2020, passed an ordinance amending the existing legislation that provided a curfew period from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m.
Councilor Archie Baribar, author of the curfew ordinance, said the amended ordinance provides curfew hours from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m., considering the quarantine status of the city.
Starting August 1, the modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) was extended in the city until August 15.
Once the amended ordinance is published, the new five-hour curfew period will take effect, replacing the existing schedule.
Baribar, however, said they have given the mayor the prerogative on what to do with the city's curfew hours.
"The schedule will just change or he [Leonardia] will exercise his executive prerogative," he said, adding that "though the ordinance states for an 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. curfew, it can be moved from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. if the mayor sees the need to do so."
It can be recalled that in an Executive Order (EO) issued earlier by Leonardia, the top official advocates for a curfew from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m., subject to the approval of the City Council.
The business sector, however, viewed it as "too early," thereby appealing for reconsideration to the City Government.
For them, the move might result in zero night business activity that comprises 30 to 40 percent of the entire business landscape of the city.
Baribar said the SP has considered the position of the business sector without precluding the mayor to make necessary actions if needed.
"There's a need for a new EO if the mayor intends to assert his earlier proposal. Without it, the amending ordinance will be followed," he stressed.