By Mike Crismundo
BUTUAN CITY – The city government of Butuan starts implementing today not only its drive to “regulate” the selling of liquor and cigarettes but its anti-smoking campaign as well.
Along with law enforcement agencies, the barangay officials including their respective civilian volunteers and barangay (village) tanods are mainly tasked to spearhead the drive.
The new measure was approved by the Sangguniang Panglungsod (SP) under Ordinance 597-2017, otherwise known as “An ordinance regulating business establishments selling and providing cigarettes and liquors to their customers” and was signed by Butuan City Mayor Ronnie Vicente C. Lagnada on July 7.
The SP ordinance was authored by SP member Ernest John Sanchez, who chairs the committee on public order, public safety and substance abuse.
Under this ordinance, it is prohibited to drink and sell in front of sari-sari stores and schools, to sell liquor and cigarettes to minors even if they are told by their parents to buy the said items and it is prohibited to sell beyond 11 p.m. and those without business permit.
Violators of the said SP Ordinance 507-2017 would be fined P1,000 for the first offense, P2,000 for the second offense, P5,000 for the third offense and revocation of business permit for the fourth offense.
It is also prohibited to smoke in public places, churches, government offices, hospitals and malls, except in designated smoking areas.
Lagnada urged the barangay officials and law enforcement agencies to strictly enforce the new measure and also asked the public to follow. “After all this is good for our health,” the city chief executive said.
The barangays would play an important role in enforcing this measure, he added.
Meanwhile, Lagnada recently met with Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) director-general Charito B. Plaza and discussed the plan of establishing special economic zones in the city.
In their meeting, Lagnada and Plaza agreed to study the conversion of the Libertad Sports Complex into Butuan Business Information Technology (IT) Park, as part of PEZA’s mandate of ecozone development, it was learned yesterday.
Currently, the city government of Butuan started conducting a feasibility study on the IT Park, which is seen to include IT, data and commercial buildings.
The establishment of the IT Park is aimed at creating more job opportunities, a growing market and increasing not only the purchasing power for entrepreneurs but also retail establishments for tourists and ensuring the economic development of Butuan city.
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