THREE quarry operators in Barangay Alangilan, Bacolod City said they are not "bad boys" as what their detractors portray them and that they have complied with all the requirements to legally engage in quarry business.

Jojo Bonnin, Michael Lawrence Bantug, and Allan Joseph Arceo said they have their respective rehabilitation and eco-tourism development plans for Bacolod City.

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They have also complied with the mitigating measures to avoid landslides, flashfloods, and siltation, stressing that there has been no incident of such man-made calamities that occurred out of the quarry operations in the barangay for more than 20 years.

Arceo, who has renewed his quarry permit and was given until 2013 to operate, urged their critics to identify "what's wrong with their quarry business."

"We will correct whatever they are," Arceo assured.

The three quarry operators also said they are members of the Negros Occidental Mining Permitees Association Inc. (Nompai), which engages tree planting activities in different areas.

Bantug, whose permit has not yet been issued, presented his eco-tourism development plan in his quarry site in Purok 8. He plans to establish a five-hectare man-made lake in his property to cater to both local and foreign tourists.

"My family and I have started, in our own little way, transforming Barangay Alangilan into a more vibrant community," said Bantug.

They are also currently developing a two-hectare lagoon across the La Provincial Polo Club, complete with clubhouse and cabanas, which they will open to the public. It will offer tilapia fishing, boating, horseback riding, and other attractions.

"This is the same project I wish to duplicate in my quarry site but in a larger scale. The name of our project is Creekside Ranch Resort and we already have secured all necessary permits from the government for this project," Bantug said, adding that they can do more.

What is very discouraging is when people whom you have trusted to help out in this community put you in a bad light, Bantug lamented.

But Bantug challenged his detractors, saying: "Have they loved this community more than our family had? I love nature and I love this community. If this were an environment issue, then let me ask them. What have they done for the environment? Have they planted more trees than I have?" (Carla N. Cañet)