COA: Badian collected P17M in 2019 from Kawasan entrance fees
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The municipal government of Badian in southwestern Cebu has collected over P17 million worth of entrance fees for Kawasan Falls in 2019, state auditors reported.
The Commission on Audit (COA), in their annual audit report for Badian, revealed that the local government unit (LGU) of Badian generated P17, 252, 785 of funds from entrance fees for Kawasan Falls, a popular tourist destination there.
“For the period January 1 to December 31, 2019, the Municipality collected Kawasan Falls entrance fee for the gross amount of ₱17,252,785.00. This includes the user’s fee of swimming without equipment for ₱25.00 per head,” COA stated in an 83-page report dated June 11, 2020.
Badian is a third-class municipality with a population of over 37,000 and located approximately 105 kilometers southwest of Cebu City.
COA has also recommended the town’s mayor and accountant to impose corresponding taxes for the collection of entrance fees for Kawasan Falls and Canyoneering Activities. This suggestion was also made to the neighboring town of Alegria.
Canyoneering, an outdoor water-sports activity, placed both towns of Badian and Alegria on the tourism map of the Philippines.
The upstream portions of the river where canyoneering takes place are in Badian before flowing downstream as Kanlaob River in Barangay Compostela, Alegria.
Aside from imposing taxes, the state auditing body is also urging local officials of Badian to streamline their accounting mechanisms on cash collected from Kawasan Falls entrance fees.
“We recommended that the Sangguniang Bayan of the Municipality review the resolutions issued relative to the collection of Kawasan Falls entrance fee and communicate to the Local Chief Executive on the appropriate charges or fees to be imposed to the tourists as well as the extent of the amount subject to the sharing scheme with the other stakeholders,” COA said. /dbs
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