Why MMDA, LGUs are not enforcing steeper fines

By Dharel Placido, ABS-CBNnews.com

Posted at Jun 19 2014 12:48 PM | Updated as of Jun 19 2014 08:48 PM

MANILA – Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chairman Francis Tolentino said the agency will continue to implement an old order that metes a P6,000 fine against colorum vehicles.

Tolentino said the MMDA was not deputized by the Land Transportation Office (LTO), and Land Transportation Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to enforce a joint administrative order which imposes much higher fines for colorum vehicles and various traffic violations.

Nonetheless, Tolentino said MMDA enforcers as well as traffic enforcers of local government units will continue to enforce a 1997 memorandum circular which sets the fine for colorum vehicles at merely P6,000.

The joint administrative order imposes a much higher fine for colorum vehicles: P1 million for buses, P200,000 for trucks, P50,000 for jeepneys, P200,000 for vans, P120,000 for taxis, and P6,000 for tricycles for the first offense.

Violators' colorum vehicles will also be impounded for three months and the public utility vehicles shall be blacklisted.

The new order also prescribes higher fines for various traffic violations.

Under the joint administrative order, only agents from the LTO and LTFRB are authorized to enforce the heftier fines.

LTFRB chairman Winston Ginez said the agency only has two teams in Metro Manila that will enforce the new order. He said more groups from LTFRB regional offices have been tasked to implement the order, alongside LTO enforcers.

Ginez said the LTFRB and LTO have decided not to deputize the MMDA while the new order is in its early stages of implementation.

''Kasama sila (MMDA) dito sa aming konsultasyon, pero ang napagpasayahan ng pagpapatupad ay limitahan muna sa LTO at LTFRB sa unang bugso para maiayos at makita pa ang kailangang adjustment as we poroceed with the implementation,'' Ginez told dzMM.

The new order has faced strong opposition from the transportation sector.

Transport groups earlier said some of their members do not intend to ply their respective routes in protest of the new order, which introduces heftier fines for traffic violations.

The groups said the drivers fear getting apprehended by enforcers for different violations such as broken tail lights, picking up and dropping off passenger in prohibited zones, among others.

Jun Magno, STOP & GO Transport Coalition president, said no real consultation was made by the government with the transportation sector.

He also scored the government for the imposition of the higher fines, saying this is only a tool for additional revenue.

He added that the LTFRB must first resolve its backlog of franchise applications before running after colorum vehicles.