Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian has urged residents and the small to medium scale entrepreneurs to take advantage of the tax amnesty the city is given starting next month to avoid paying penalties and other fees. Gatchalian said the amnesty program is hoped to increase the city’s earnings and is an alternative to raising tax rates to raise more funds. He pointed out that the Department of Finance earlier called on the City Government for its failure to hike taxes for over two decades. “We can never impose any new tax increase because the residents and our small-and-medium scale businessmen will suffer. Most of them have yet to recover due to calamities. Ayaw naming mas lalong maging pabigat sa mga mamamayan [We don’t want to be an additional burden to our constituents],” he added. He said those businesses, which still have undeclared machineries and other taxable assets, can do so without getting charged for penalties and interests.