Non-segregation of waste means penalty – city gov’t


City residents who will be caught dumping non-segregated wastes in the streets  will now face penalty or will be charged in court.

This was disclosed to the Chronicle by City Solid Waste Management chief Engr. Edmond Jimenez last Friday.

Jimenez explained that the city of Tagbilaran has no more choice but to implement the provisions of RA 9003 otherwise known as the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000 because Tagbilaran had been tagged by the DENR as violator of environmental laws regarding the dealing of wastes.

Jimenez said that he already formed three-man monitoring teams with an officer in-charge who will issue environmental citation ticket while the other two members serve as witnesses in any violation on the waste segregation law committed by a person or an establishment.

Jimenez said each violation is already provided in the citation ticket together with the corresponding penalty. If there is no action from the apprehended person within seven days, the city solid waste management office will file charges before the fiscal’s office against the erring person.

The city solid waste management chief also said that it’s about time Tagbilaran pays more attention in dealing with the garbage. In fact, information dissemination was already conducted up to the barangay level on how to manage and control the garbage.

According to Jimenez, the law said the segregation should begin in every household. Only recyclable wastes will be collected by the garbage collectors while bio-degradable wastes must be taken care of by the residents.

Residents are advised to keep plastic barrel or drum which will be used as storage for biodegradable waste.

Each barangay is also mandated to appoint a “barangay waste manager” who is in charge in over-seeing that each household complies with individual or purok compost pit for rotten wastes. In the long run, a barangay could also serve as the one that will segregate the recyclable waste from the household.

“It could be an extra income for the barangay because recyclable wastes include plastics, cans and bottles which can be sold”, Jimenez said.

However, if the barangay does not want to segregate recyclable wastes, the garbage collectors can collect them, provided that there are no rotten wastes.

Jimenez admitted that people are not still familiar with the implementation of the new procedures in dealing with the garbage although leaflets were already distributed to city residents. He already expect residents to complain for making the situation too much of a hassle for every household. However, Jimenez will not step backward in pursuing the provisions of the RA 9003.

“If we do not follow the laws of the DENR, the city government will be penalized with up to P1 million plus ten percent of the city’s gross income,” Jimenez explained.

However, those who will be caught with non-segregated waste will be fined P300-P1,000. Penalties can also be imposed at the barangay level. To avoid huge penalties when caught, Jimenez advised violators to immediately pay P200 as compromise fee.

Violators who are issued with environmental citation ticket can choose to disregard it. However, the penalty will still reflect and remain when that certain violator has to seek barangay, police and NBI clearances wherein no clearance shall be issued without settling first the appropriate penalty.

Jimenez believed that residents, especially those who live in congested areas in the city, will find it hard in implementing segregation at source. However, he said that this cannot be a valid excuse because even places more congested than Tagbilaran City , such as Tondo, was able to comply with the segregation at source and individual household compost pit for rotten waste.

The city solid waste chief is looking forward that their office can someday collect rotten waste, special waste such as paints and thinners, from the residents but with fees. However, they still can’t do that as of press time because aside from the fact that the dump site cannot anymore be unloaded with rotten wastes, the city’s existing ordinance regarding fees on collected wastes cannot compensate the actual operational expenses of the city.

According to Jimenez, the present ordinance mandates every household to pay P100 per annum while big business establishments have to pay P400 per annum in order for their wastes to be collected. Although these corresponding fees are not yet implemented, he added that the operational expenses of the city solid waste office now hits P17 million per annum.

With the given scenarios, Jimenez asked the residents to participate in the DENR’s call of waste management. He added that every household can be creative on how to manage wastes.(Anthony Aniscal)

 


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