MBTF vetoes 2 Bangus Festival ordinances

By January 30, 2023Headlines

DAGUPAN City Mayor Belen Fernandez vetoed Ordinances Nos. 2053-2022 and 2054-2022 and returned these to the Sangguniang Panlungsod on January 19, 2023.

Ordinance No. 2053-2022 sought to institutionalize the conduct of the Kalutan ed Dalan of the Dagupan Bangus Festival along the stretch of A.B. Fernandez Avenue while Ordinance No. 2054-2022, sought to adopt the logo of the Bangus Festival used by the past administration.

Both were approved by the SP during its regular session on December 20 and copies of the same were forwarded to the office of Mayor Fernandez by virtue of the 1st Indorsement  signed by City Secretary Ryan Ravanzo on January 13, 2023.

Fernandez said Ordinance No. 2053-2022 was a “product of hasty legislation without proper consultation hence lack of factual basis”, adding that businessmen along A.B. Fernandez Avenue “do not actually bear and reflect their assent towards this proposed ordinance.”

The PUNCH learned that only two businessmen attended the committee hearing conducted by the seven majority councilors in the afternoon of December 16, 2022.

Fernandez said her consultation with businessmen told a different story, that holding the Bangus Festival along A.B. Fernandez would further aggravate the congestion, making access to their establishments even more difficult while the transport sector is opposed to the proposal because it would deprive them of their livelihood once access to the main avenue in the city is closed.

The mayor also described A,B. Fernandez Avenue as being too narrow to accommodate the Kalutan ed Dalan, a crowd-drawer activity, and it poses a security risk  to residents and visitors citing what happened in Seoul, South Korea where people died during a Halloween  stampede because of the cramped road space.

Because of the security risks posed while holding the big events that expect millions of visitors and residents,  “the undersigned exercises her veto power in accordance with the Local Government Code,” the mayor wrote.

In her veto of Ordinance No. 2254-2022, Fernandez considers the ordinance as restrictive since it prevents the city from promoting appropriate themes every year.

“While we value the importance of Logo and the importance of having the same registered, however, we also recognize the need for growth and development,” Fernandez  said.

To counter the two vetoed ordinances, Councilor Redford Erfe-Mejia claimed the two ordinances already lapsed into law because it was passed by SP on December 20, 2022.

Secretary Ravanzo, however, clarified that the two measures were transmitted to the mayor’s office on January 13, 2023, not December 20, 2022

Ravanzo explained while the two ordinances were passed on December 20, 2022, it was only on December 27 when the original drafts were submitted by the authors,and it was only on January 11 when the secretariat succeeded  in having both ordinances signed by all the authors.

Ravanzo said he submitted the two ordinances to Vice Mayor Brian Kua for his signature on January 13. And on the same day, the two were transmitted to the mayor’s office.

Unfortunately, for the seven members of the majority, they cannot override the mayor’s veto because under the local government code, it needs nine members to overturn a mayor’s veto for a city council that is made up of 12 members. (Leonardo Micua)

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