Bulacan sets new guidelines on the issuance of special permits on land development

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CITY OF MALOLOS – In an aim to augment national and local laws such as Republic Act 7942 or the Philippine Mining Act of 1995 and Provincial Ordinance No. C-005 or the Revised Environmental Code of the Province of Bulacan, the Provincial Government of Bulacan through the Sanggunian Panlalawigan has passed Provincial Ordinance No. 102-2023, an ordinance that sets new guidelines on the issuance of special permits on land development concerning the extraction and disposal of non-metallic  minerals within the province of Bulacan that are not covered by a mining or quarrying permit.

The said ordinance establishes specific guidelines and policies in the extraction, utilization and disposition of incidental earth minerals as a component of private land development projects.

Bulacan Environment and Natural Resources Office Head Atty. Julius Victor Degala said their office issues two types of permits: Quarrying Permit which is granted to a qualified person or entity for the extraction and utilization of quarry resources on public and/or private land or water system; and Special Permit that is issued by the Provincial Governor to any landowners who wish to develop his/her idle land into productive and beneficial use , wherein the course of development, there is a need to extract or remove and transport specific volume of earth and/or unconsolidated terrace sand and gravel materials from his/her property to another place/s.

Effective on April 18, 2024, individuals can apply as a permittee and be granted with the Special Permit provided that he/she has met the mandatory requirements including the following: Letter of Application addressed to the Provincial Governor, duly filled out application form (BENRO Form 01-1 signed by the applicant and notarized, sketch plan of the area applied, clearances from concerned  LGUs, proof of ownership of the land, Site Development Plan, Provincial Environmental Compliance Certificate, Certification from the Provincial Agrarian Reform Office or Municipal Agrarian Reform Office, and Governor’s Accreditation of heavy equipment.

Furthermore, the effectivity of the special permit is limited to 60 days upon issuance and can be extended by the Governor to up to 30 days as recommended by BENRO, provided that the permittee has a valid justification as to why the land development was not finished within the 60-day period.

Any person involved in the commission of any of prohibited acts under Section 16 such as “Kabit System; Disposing and/or transporting of earth materials without a Special Permit issued by the Governor; Disposing and/or transporting of earth materials without a valid Delivery Receipt and Transport Slip; Disposing and/or transporting of earth materials without paying the corresponding quarry tax; and Disposing and/or transporting of earth materials that exceeds 10,000 cubic meters will pay a fine of P5,000 for every violation, or an imprisonment of one month for the first offense; P5,000 for every violation or an imprisonment of two months and impoundment of trucks/vehicles/equipment used in committing any of the prohibited acts for the second offense; and P5,000 for every violation or imprisonment of three months, impoundment of trucks/vehicles/equipment used in committing any of the prohibited acts and the permittee shall also be banned from securing any form of mining/quarry permits from the PGB for three years for the third offense. To be released, the fine should be settled and an impounding fee of P1,000 per truck/vehicle/equipment should be paid.

“Ang pagpapatupad natin ng angkop na regulasyon sa paggamit ng lupa ay mahalagang bahagi ng ating gampanin bilang mga lingkod bayan at mamamayan. Ang kalupaan ay biyayang nagtataglay ng nag uumapaw na potensyal at bilang tagapangalaga ng likas na yaman, sa atin nakaatas ang tungkuling pakaingatan ang ating teritoryo at siguraduhing nakikinabang ang lahat sa biyayang dulot nito,” Gov. Daniel R. Fernando said.

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