Still no new model for updating real property tax rates in Cebu City
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Four months after Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama vetoed City Ordinance No. 138-2022, which increases the real property tax (RPT) rate, the city’s executive department has yet to introduce a new model for revising the RPT rates to the Council.
In a news forum on Tuesday, June 13, 2023, Mayor Rama said there would be a presentation of the new model for RPT rates to him before going to the Council, but he confirmed that its local finance committee (LFC), as of Tuesday, has yet to endorse a new model for the RPT code.
“There will be a presentation to me before going to the Council. But what is definite is we will be submitting the revised,” he said.
“Second, we will be confronting the business matter,” he added.
Once the executive, through the LFC, submits its proposed new model for the revised RPT rates to the council, it will be studied by the Council’s Committee on Finance before it drafts an ordinance incorporating the proposed revised RPT rates.
A new ordinance will then be subjected to and scrutinized through public hearings and council readings before approval.
The City Ordinance No. 138-2022 was passed by the Council last January, which allowed the city government to update its current RPT rates. It was meant to be implemented in two stages, the first of which was to start in 2024.
Under this vetoed ordinance, residential lots will have an assessment level of two percent, commercial lots 10 percent, industrial lots 10 percent, agricultural lots 4.8 percent, and special lots 10 percent.
The last time that the city updated its RPT rates was in 2004 and under the law, the city should revise its RPT rates every three years.
Rama, however, in a press conference in February, led by his then executive secretary and now City Administrator Atty. Collin Rosell, announced that he vetoed the ordinance, saying that the Council’s version denies the City Government an appropriate funding source and does not accurately reflect the values of properties.
Meanwhile, the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) earlier said that while they do not oppose the local government updating its RPT rates, they are urging the city government to keep current market values in coming up with the new tax rates.
They also asked the city to implement it on a staggered basis.
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