Tenants to get 30-day extension in paying residential rent under ‘Bayanihan Law’

Robie de Guzman   •   March 26, 2020   •   4077

MANILA, Philippines – Tenants struggling to pay their residential rent during the enhanced community quarantine in Luzon will be given a one-month extension to settle their dues under the newly-signed ‘Bayanihan to Heal as One’ Law.

Under the Republic Act No. 11469 recently signed by President Rodrigo Duterte, a minimum of 30-day grace period is provided on residential rents falling due within the quarantine period “without incurring interests, penalties, fees, and other charges” to ease the burden of individuals affected by the Luzon-wide community quarantine.

The provision, which was recommended by Senator Grace Poe during Monday’s special session, is seen as a move to help especially low-wage earners who are struggling to pay their rental payments during this public health crisis.

“Many renters live paycheck to paycheck but during these extraordinary times when they suddenly need to work or not at all, they might not have enough to pay for their rent and may even face the possibility of eviction,” Poe said.

“In pushing for this provision in the bill, we hope to ease the growing financial burden of the pandemic particularly on millions of poor Filipino households,” she added.

The Duterte administration also moved the statutory deadlines and timelines for the filing of any document, the payment of taxes, fees and other charges required by law in view of the continuing rise of confirmed novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases.

The law also grants Duterte additional powers to deal with the current crisis, including realigning any appropriation in the national budget to fast-track government response against COVID-19, provide poor Filipino families with P5,000 to P8,000 financial aid for two months under an expanded Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.

The measure also provides the payment of a special risk allowance for all public health frontliners, and the anti-hoarding and profiteering of hygiene and sanitation products. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

Tourism Dept., may paalala sa mga magbabakasyon sa Boracay

Robie de Guzman   •   October 1, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Muli nang binuksan ngayong araw ang isla ng Boracay para sa mga turista matapos ang mahigit anim na buwang pagsasara bunsod ng coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

Ibig sabihin, maaari nang bumisita sa isla ang mga nais mag-bakasyon. Ngunit paalala ng Department of Tourism (DOT), may mga requirement na kailangang sundin.

Batay sa ibinabang panuntunan ng DOT, ang mga magbabakasyon sa Boracay ay obligadong sumailalim sa RT-PCR test para sa COVID-19, at ipakita ang dokumentong nagpapatunay na negatibo sila sa virus dalawa hanggang tatlong araw bago ang petsa ng kanilang biyahe.

Habang hinihintay ang resulta ng test, dapat ding sumailalim sa quarantine ang pasahero hanggang sa araw ng kanilang biyahe.

Sinabi rin ni Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat na kailangang may kumpirmadong booking ang pasahero sa alinman sa 200 accredited hotels sa Boracay.

“Pwede ngang galing sa NCR at saka no age restrictions. Of course, ang importante pala, kailangan naka-book ka sa isang hotel. Lahat ng hotel doon dapat DOT-accredited hotel kasi ‘yon ay pumasa sa health and safety protocols ng DOT,” ang wika ni Romulo-Puyat.

Payo ng kalihim sa mga biyahero, alamin sa website ng DOT ang iba pang requirement bago sila magbiyahe upang maiwasan ang aberya.

Kasabay ng pagbubukas ng turismo sa isla ay ibinalik na rin ang biyahe ng mga eroplano patungong Boracay.

Dalawa hanggang tatlong flight schedules kada linggo ang inilaan ng Philippine Airlines, Cebu Pacific at Air Asia.

Ayon kay Michelle Lim, ang Corporate Communications Specialist ng Cebu Pacific Air, kakaunti lang ang bumiyahe pa-Boracay ngayong araw ngunit inaasahan na nila ito lalo’t marami ang nangangamba sa kanilang kaligtasan sa gitna ng pandemiya.

“The flight was about, it had about 10 percent of the seats occupied. The load kasi are building pa at the moment. In the next few weeks or months, as more people are inspired to travel as well and are assured that everything is safe and everything is all set for them, then it would encourage them to go out and travel,” ang pahayag ni Lim.

Paalala rin ng mga otoridad na mahigpit pa ring ipinatutupad ang health protocols gaya ng pagsusuot ng face mask at face shield, physical distancing at minimum contact upang maiwasan ang pagkalat ng COVID-19.

Nanawagan rin ang airline companies sa mga pasahero na alamin ang updated travel restrictions at regulations na inilalatag ng pamahalaan sa gitna ng nararanasang krisis. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Asher Cadapan Jr.)

QC requires helmets for bike-riding public

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 1, 2020

Under the new normal, the Quezon City government is requiring bicycle riders to wear helmets while traversing roads in the city.

Mayor Joy Belmonte approved Ordinance No. SP-2942 to further encourage bike-riders to wear helmets as protection, especially with more people traveling by bicycle.

“Ngayong bahagi na ng new normal ang pagbibisikleta, nais nating gawing mas ligtas ang aktibidad na ito para sa mga dumadaan sa ating lungsod, (Since biking is part of the new normal, we want this activity to be safe for everyone travelling in our city),” she said.

The ordinance sets penalties imposing fines of P1,000, P3,000 and P5,000 for the first, second and third offense, respectively.

Belmonte recently initiated the implementation of a Bike Lane Project to provide a safe place for people who have shifted to biking as an alternative means of transportation amid the community quarantine. AAC

Cavite gov’t to allow visits to cemeteries until Oct. 27

Robie de Guzman   •   October 1, 2020

The provincial government of Cavite on Thursday announced that it will allow visits to cemeteries from October 1 to 27 but laid down some rules for those planning to do so to prevent the spread of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19)

In a Facebook post, Cavite Governor Jonvic Remulla said the cemeteries in the province are open during said period from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. but will be closed from October 28 to November 2 as agreed by local authorities.

He also warned visitors that eating meals and drinking alcoholic beverages inside the cemeteries are prohibited. Videokes and selling of food are also not allowed.

“Bawal po ang kainan kahit sa mga pribado at sosyal na libingan. Mga alta, matutong makisama. Kung bawal ang kainan, lalong bawal ang inuman at lasingan,” Remulla said.

“Bawal maglako ng mga pagkain at inumin sa sementeryo,” he added.

The governor said the municipal and city government will also issue regulations on the number of persons allowed to enter the cemeteries in their respective areas.

He stressed that visitors should strictly observe health protocols including the wearing of face mask and face shield.

“Kailangan naka-face mask at face shield. Mag-ingat lamang sa mga aksidente lalo na sa pagsindi ng kandila dahil ang face shield ay gawa sa plastic,” Remulla said.

He likewise emphasized that those below 18 years of age are not allowed to go to cemeteries.

“Ang mga bata below 18 years old ay bawal pumunta sa sementeryo. Alam ko na mahirap ito pero mas malakas mahawa at magkalat ng sakit ang mga kabataan kaysa matatanda,” Remulla explained.

“Dahil sa pandemya, ay kailangan pa rin nating paulit-ulit na ipaalala ang social distancing rules. Lagpas 10,000 na ang positibo sa COVID dito sa Cavite at malakas ang kutob ko na baka lalong kumalat ang sakit na ito ngayong papalapit na undas,” he added.

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