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PIA Press Release
Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Cabanatuan execs seek prov'l capitol approval for remaining free sand and gravel extraction requests to support city infra projects

by Lyndon Plantilla

CABANATUAN CITY, Nueva Ecija, January 10 (PIA) -- The city government of Cabanatuan expressed gratitude to the Provincial Government for releasing one of the five government gratuitous permits it applied for.

However, Legal Department Head Cesar Villar appealed to the provincial government to expedite their remaining applications so the city can implement in full their pending infrastructure projects.

Furthermore, Villar said city has completed the required documents.

Cabanatuan City has proposed to the Province extraction activities in Barangays Macatbong, Caudillo, Samon, Daang Sarile and Kabulihan in General Mamerto Natividad.

The city abandoned Kabulihan, the first priority extraction site, following the objection of the Municipality of Natividad and chose Macatbong as their new priority extraction site.

With the huge amount of construction materials their projects require, Villar said resources in Barangay Macatbong may not suffice.

Villar said the province could approve the remaining requests for the benefit of Cabanatuenos so the city can also use materials for building and repairing other structures like schools, hospitals, etc.

Based on Cabanatuan's Annual City Development Plan for 2011, the volume of sands and gravel needed for their infrastructure projects and rehabilitation works is around 318,000 cubic meters, which Villar said, was reviewed and approved by the Province.

The recent government gratuitous permit issued allowed the city government to quarry 20,000 cubic meters within 60 days in Brgy. Macatbong.

Asked about why Cabanatuan ordered the hauling of sands and gravel prior to the issuance of government gratuitous permit, Villar said the city government has the mandate to act immediately to complete those structures especially the ones damaged by floods.

For Villar, the earlier hauling at Macatbong is justified since the area belongs to the city and the materials from there will be used for the benefit of its own citizens.

Government gratuitous permits for quarrying operations in any province are granted by governors to government agencies in accordance with the Philippine Mining Act of 1995 (Republic Act No. 7942).

According to the Provincial Government of Nueva Ecija, the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO) will review requests for government gratuitous permits and make recommendations to the office of the governor for appropriate actions.

As far as granting gratuitous permits is concerned, the provincial government said the governor is practicing regulation to government and private organizations to ensure projects will not abuse environment nor place Novo Ecijanos in harm's way. (WLB/LDRP PIA-3)

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