March 12, 2019
QUEZON CITY – Murang Kuryente Partylist (MKP) on Tuesday filed a Motion to Dismiss and a Petition for Intervention against the recent petition of the Philippine Rural Electric Cooperatives Association, Inc. (PHILRECA) to pass on real property tax (RPT) to the monthly bill of consumers nationwide.
In a petition filed on October 21, 2018, PHILRECA asked the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) to formulate rules on how to pass on real property taxes to their consumers.
"All property owners pay amilyar (real property taxes) on what they own. Why do we also have to pay for what the coops own?”, asked Gerry Arances, a nominee of the Murang Kuryente Partylist.
Joining the partylist in its action are the groups Center for Energy, Ecology, and Development (CEED) and Sanlakas.
Murang Kuryente filed the Motion to Dismiss on the basis that the petition of the electric coop group is speculative, as there is no proof presented that the coops are being assessed real property taxes, or that they do not have enough funds to pay for these taxes.
Arances said, “If only these coops are as quick in providing cheap and reliable supplies of electricity as they are in inventing ridiculous charges for their customers, our country would have the most advanced electrical system in the world.”
Petitions for Intervention, if granted, allows a party with direct and substantial interest the opportunity to be heard during the hearing.
Murang Kuryente, CEED, and Sanlakas are filing the Petition to Intervene on behalf of the millions of consumers to be affected by the coops’ petition, to ensure that consumers’ interests are heard despite the short notice given to them concerning the request.
"Let me remind these cooperatives that they should work for the benefit of their member-consumers. There is no sense in raking in profits for the cooperative if it means unduly burdening their members," Arances further said.