More than 5,000 Taguig establishments could be operating without permits — COA
MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Audit (COA) has called out Taguig’s local government unit (LGU) for failing to include 5,146 business establishments in their official database, which it said, is an indication that these are operating without permits.
COA, in its audit report of the city government released last July 5, also added that 11,035 establishments were given permits to operate but were not included in the barangay’s list of establishments.
“On the other hand, 11,035 businesses were granted permits to operate in the City but were not included in the Barangay list of establishments which could mean that barangay clearances as required under Section 152 (c) of the Local Government Code (LGC) were not issued,” the commission explained.
According to Section 152 (c) of the LGC, business owners should secure barangay clearance before their respective application of business permits are processed by the LGU, and before licenses or permits are issued.
“Barangay clearance is essential in the grant of permit to operate business in the City,” COA stressed.
Data obtained by COA from the Taguig city government showed that most of the businesses that are not in the city’s database are from Barangay South Signal Village with 629, followed by Barangay New Lower Bicutan (623), and Barangay Fort Bonifacio (464). Barangay Fort Bonifacio covers the Bonifacio Global City (BGC).
State auditors also showed that Barangay Fort Bonifacio tops the list of barangays with most establishments not included in the barangay list, with 5,443; followed by Western Bicutan (1,481), and Pinagsama (701).
COA said that this may be due to the release of permits even without securing other required documents, and without paying city taxes. COA adds that it can also be the result of city permits being released without the barangay’s approval.
This practice supposedly was detrimental to city government as taxes were not properly collected.
“The practice deprived the City of revenue opportunities it could have generated. There could also be a probability that taxes may have been avoided by the owners or proprietors of businesses,” COA added.
The COA had asked the Taguig City Treasurer and the city’s Business Permit Licensing Office (BPLO) to inspect the business establishments and reconcile their records.
After inspection, COA also ordered the concerned agencies to impose business taxes, along with requiring business owners to explain why they are operating without the necessary permits.
COA said that the Taguig city government responded by assuring that it will be conducting a thorough inspection of the non-enlisted establishments. /muf
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