QC holds public hearings on planned tax hike

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THE Quezon City government has started conducting public hearings on an ordinance that seeks to adjust land and property values that will lead to an increase in real property taxes.

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Public consultations in barangays kicked off on Tuesday.

“The people are open to it, they just need more explanation. We’ve been telling them it wouldn’t hurt them so much because the proposed tax rate adjustments is minimal,” City Assessor Rodolfo Ordanes said.

During the public hearing in Batasan Hills, the Dona Pilar Homeowners Association, through its officer-in-charge Benjie Francisco, expressed its support to the proposed tax adjustment.

“It’s about time. This is long overdue,” Francisco said.

He said the city’s population is fast ballooning and more revenues are needed to fund social development projects.

While admitting that the adjustment would mean additional financial burden to property owners, Francisco said 2.9 million city residents will benefit from the additional revenues.

Draft Ordinance No. P020CC-141 calls for the general revision of the Fair Market Value (FMV) for the lands and buildings in the city, which was last adjusted 21 years ago.

Ordanes said land values in the cities of Makati, Caloocan, and Pasay have been readjusted, leaving behind Quezon City, whose average FMV for residential and commercial properties is only P5,000 per square meter.

“We’ve been using the old rate, the 1995 rate,” the city official stressed, adding that the Local Government Code requires the adjustment of FMVs every three years.

The Commission on Audit, in a letter to Mayor Herbert Bautista last month, recommended that the city government adjust its FMV.

“For years now, the general revision of real property in the city has not been undertaken such that the fair market values for purposes of assessment, classification and subsequently the collection of realty taxes has not been attuned to the changing times,” the audit agency said.

Public hearings on the planned adjustment have been conducted in Bahay Toro, Project 8; Batasan Hills, Barangay NS Amoranto, Barangay Holy Spirit, Barangay Loyola Heights, and Barangay San Roque.

Public consultations will continue until November 17.

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