WHO’RE RUNNING for president in 2016?

They include (by their nicknames or code words): “Boy Negro,” “Boy Pickup,” “Pogi,”

and “Compañero Jr.”

There could be more, with most others staying safe or playing coy, believing in the politicians’ gospel that presidents aren’t picked in caucus rooms but are made in heaven.

Only Lapu-Lapu and Talisay ‘compliant’

The Department of Finance and the Bureau of Local Government Finance are trying to keep pace with the Bureau of Internal Revenue in the campaign to shame taxpayers into paying the correct taxes.

The Finance agencies’ targets, however, are not the taxpayers directly but the local governments that haven’t been updating their bases for collecting real property tax.

Of course, revising an LGU’s Schedule of Market Values (SMVs) results in taxpayers paying more. Same bottom line: higher taxes, more government revenues.

Of the cities in Cebu, only Lapu-Lapu and Talisay have updated SMVs.

All the others have outdated bases, slow-moving by nine to 12 years. The “slow-pokes”:

-- Toledo, 15 years overdue

-- Mandaue, 12 years;

-- Bogo, Carcar and Naga, 10 years;

-- Cebu, nine years.

Lapu-Lapu and Talisay cities have been listed as “compliant.”

The Local Government Code requires provinces and cities, including the lone municipality in Metro Manila, to use a “fair, current and updated” SMV. Compliance, however, is often associated by politicians with “vote-killing.” Four in every five cities, based on Finance data, prefer the votes to increase in revenue.

Davao mayor and ‘conspiracy theory’

How did local broadcast commentaries come up with the “conspiracy theory” regarding the murder of Cebu businessman Richard King in Davao City?

Bases for the said theory:

-- No crime in that city happens without the knowledge of the mayor.

(False: there are crimes beyond the control of any public official.)

-- No crime there goes unpunished.

(False: there have been a number of murders since several years back that are still not solved, much less prosecuted in court.)

-- The mayor had been silent until late Friday, June 13, and there was no public anger expressed about the killing.

(Not reliable: his reaction might have been reported late. His offer of additional reward money should be expressive of his concern about peace and order in the city.)

Crimes of passion bug Davao City too

It’s not true that Davao City, being reputed and billed as a peaceful city, doesn’t have its share of murders.

Aside from the King execution last June 12, blogger/columnist Jess Dureza reported the killing of Davao businessman TY Garcia and lawyer Emmanuel Acu¤a. Dureza calls them “crimes of passion”: love triangle, business rivalry, or personal grudge.

His point: no matter how peaceful a city is, it isn’t spared of violence set off by runaway emotion.

Crime stats though don’t exclude numbers produced by crimes of passion.

[bzzzzz@sunstar.com.ph or paseares@sunstar.com.ph]