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DENR 6 distributes 200 patents to Bacolodnons

VICTORIOUS! Extreme right photo shows the beneficiaries patiently waiting to receive their respective patents. The people of Bacolod City felt victorious and rejoice alongside their local officials after the formal distribution of 200 patents during a Handog Titulo Program on October 18, 2014 in Brgy. 35, Bacolod City was done. Present during the event are Congressman Evelio R. Leonardia (2nd from left, left photo) Bayan Muna Representative Neri J. Colmenares (3rd from left), Regional Technical Director for Forestry Livino B. Duran (4th from left), Regional Technical Director Maximo F. Soriano, Jr. for Lands, MGB Regional Director Leo Van V. Juguan and Negros PENR Officer Andres T. Untal. Right photo shows the beneficiaries along with the local officials happily showing off their patents.

 

After series of investigations over the stability of land they occupy, residents of three sitios in Bacolod City had a joyful occasion of finally holding their legal title after the issue had been settled.

Two hundred (200) Residential Free Patents were gladly received by the occupants of Sitios Maabi-abihon, Masinadyahon and Mahili-ugyon during the Handog Titulo Program in Brgy. 35, Bacolod City, recently.

Prior to the successful patent distribution, a Memorandum of Agreement was entered between the City Government of Bacolod and the DENR-CENRO Bacolod City on March 24, 2010 to facilitate the survey and titling of the identified 2.2000 (approx.) hectares of public land already occupied by the beneficiaries. In the mid-2010, the august body of Bacolod City ratified the MOA with its approval of SP Resolution No. 213. On November 2011, the Community Environment & Natural Resources Office in Bacolod City began the land survey. The survey team strategized to conduct the survey by batch, with a total of six batches to complete the whole area.

At the third batch of survey however, DENR Secretary Ramon J.P. Paje through a memorandum ordered to suspend the acceptance and processing of public land applications. Areas covered under the said memorandum are lands formed by action of the sea on all waterways and accretion islets in river channels and adjacent shores, dried creeks, river beds and other lots of similar character.

To settle the dilemma whether the said three sitios do not fall in areas identified under Secretary Paje’s memorandum, the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) conducted an evaluation and assessment of the area to determine its stability for residential purposes.

“Results of our evaluation showed that the area is considered permanent in nature,” MGB Regional Director Leo Van V. Juguan assured. It thereby gave way for the approval of the survey returns as well as the processing of Residential Free Patents over the area.

The total number of patents that can be generated in the area totaled to 322 lots equivalent to 2.1834 hectares. CENRO Bacolod City is still generating the remaining 122 patents and is set to complete it before end of November 2014.

“Residential Free Patent is a priority program of the government to those identified by their local government units as residential zone areas. We are now intensifying the processing and issuance of free patent applications and encourage those potential beneficiaries to apply for a title for them to receive the economic benefits of being a land owner. This would likewise help improve their lives,” said DENR 6 Regional Director Jim O Sampulna.

The following area limits are observed when applying for a free residential patent: 1) 200 sq. m. in highly urbanized cities; 2) 500 sq. m. in all cities; 3) 750 sq. m. for 1st and 2nd class municipalities; and 4) 1,000 sq. m. in all other municipalities.

With the issuance of 200 patents to its constituents, the local government of Bacolod City is now positive it will boost the real property tax collection and strengthen the economic status of the city. Land titling settle many other social concerns as well such as it helps resolve boundary conflicts of either individual or political boundaries; shelter and housing; and economic participation.

Neri J. Colmenares, Bayan Muna Representative and known for his concerns for the welfare of the urban poor, was also present during the Handog Titulo Program, stressed that “demolition is not a solution since our urban poor whose settlements belong to public lands can avail of the government’s land program.” Colmenares also lauded the unity and cooperation of the beneficiaries which was instrumental in attaining their dream of a titled residential lot. “Your unity and cooperation among one another and organized as a legitimate association helps strengthen your land claims,” he added.

Negros Occ. Congressman Evelio R. Leonardia congratulated the beneficiaries for attaining their much-awaited land title. They finally hold in their hands the dream of their lives. “I rejoice with you in that you are no longer squatters but are now home owners,” he told the beneficiaries.

“Now you have a treasure in your hands,” RTD Livino B. Duran of the Forestry Sector told the beneficiaries who are all beaming with pride. RTD Duran also distributed the “blue book” titled: DENR – Local Government Partnerships Handbook among local officials which will serve as guide and reference in their implementation of the land titling program of the government.

Meanwhile, Negros Occidental PENR Officer Andres T. Untal persuaded the beneficiaries to secure their title. “Do not lose it through pawn or by any other means. It is your land title now,” he said. PENRO Untal also urged the now land owners to return the favor to the environment by managing their wastes and keeping everything clean. “After all, you are the direct beneficiaries of your own cleanliness. By maintaining your land area clean especially the canals, you help clean the land and water where you are the inhabitants,” he added.

CENR Officer Joan Nathaniel F. Gerangaya of Bacolod City shared the joy of the beneficiaries. “As beneficiaries, keep your environment clean so you live healthy. Take care of mother Earth so you do not earn her wrath. Be thankful that you have the support of your local government and your local officials, so be vigilant as caretakers of the environment ,” he told them.

 

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