Bacolod Mayor Evelio Leonardia said the city wants the case questioning the legality of the new Revenue Code of Bacolod City resolved at the earliest possible time.
This was his reaction to a petition filed by the legal counsel of Rolling Hills Memorial Park Inc. asking the Bacolod Regional Trial Court to expunge from its record and consider not filed the motion to dismiss filed by the City of Bacolod in the civil case filed by the funeral firm against City Ordinance 565, or the new city Revenue Code.
If our lawyer believes it should be dismissed, will he not file a motion to dismiss? Leonardia asked. “We are all entitled to our legal remedies, he said.
RHMPI, through a stockholder, former Bacolod Rep. Monico Puentevella, filed the petition against the city government and his political rival, Evelio Leonardia, in his capacity as city mayor, seeking the declaration of the new tax code as illegal and of no force and effect, and for it to permanently prohibit the respondents from enforcing it.
Marguerite Therese Lucila, counsel of RHMP, said the motion to dismiss should be expunged from the records and considered not filed because it was filed in such a manner that they did not receive it on time in violation of the 3-day notice rule.
Because the respondents have waived their right to file an answer, it should not be considered as filed, she said.
The hearing of the case has been reset to August 1.
Leonardia said the Revenue Code of Bacolod is 19 years old and this is the time for the city to catch up or correct that irregular situation. “This is supposed to be an adjustment remedy to correct what was wrong in the past,” he said.
“This time we should be abreast, we should be in touch with realities and one solution is the adjustment of our tax rates,” he added.
Leonardia recalled that during the meetings of Vice Mayor Jude Thaddeus Sayson with the businessmen, some of them seemed to be open about it. “I hope they will see the rationale behind this,” he said.
He is in his last term as mayor and will be staying for just over a year, Leonardia said. It will not be his administration that will benefit from the revision of the Revenue Code but future administrations, he said.*CGS