Pampanga governor ratchets up quarry taxes target to P1B in 3 years
SAN LUIS, Pampanga — Re-elected Pampanga Governor Lilia Pineda has raised the provincial government’s collection target from quarrying Mt. Pinatubo’s sand and gravel to P1 billion in the next three years.
Pineda set the new goal after the provincial government collected P776.1 million in taxes and fees from quarrying in the last three years.
She said she was anticipating higher demand for sand because of the infrastructure boom in the public and private sectors due to economic growth under President Aquino.
The recent collections exceeded by P165 million the P611.1 million that was generated during the administration of former Governor Eddie Panlilio, reports from the provincial government’s environment and natural resources office showed.
Panlilio introduced the basic reforms, ending 12 years of low collections from the quarrying of Pinatubo sand during the administrations of former governors, Senator Manuel “Lito” Lapid and his son, Mark. Panlilio required haulers to pay the taxes and other fees directly at the treasurer’s office, not at checkpoints.
From July 2010 to May 2013, the provincial government’s collection increased in part because P50 was added to the P150 administrative fee, which is used to monitor and regulate the industry.
The provincial quarry task force Kalam employs 231 personnel, including 193 stationed in the field.
The provincial government did not provide data on how much the local governments, the provincial government and barangays received as their share of the P150 sand tax. The Local Government Code sets a 30-30-40 percent sharing for these entities.
Pineda said Kalam is studying the possibility of using barges to deliver sand and gravel faster to Metro Manila and Southern Luzon.
A plan to computerize the records of payments of quarry fees and taxes, as proposed by outgoing Vice Governor Joseller Guiao, did not push through.