CLRG submits comments on House bill conferring legislative powers to the MMDA-Metro Manila Council
9 October 2017, Quezon City
CLRG researchers Raphael Montes Jr. and Elyzabeth Cureg delivered the Center's comments on a House Bill seeking to confer legislative powers on the MMDA-Metro Manila Council. This seeks to resolve issues over the lack of formal policy-making powers of the regional body which has been challenged by Metro Manila local governments.
The 1997 law creating the MMDA identified specific competencies over metro-wide issues but fell short of granting full legislative powers to the regional body. The Metro Manila Council (mainly composed of the mayors of the 17 local governments in the National Capital Region) has acted as the region's policy-making body. However, only local governments have the powers to adopt ordinances.
The bill that is currently under discussion in the Committee on Metropolitan Manila Development seeks to institute a three-stage process of regional legislation. First, the MMC will craft and approve an ordinance. Second, the ordinance will be submitted to the 17 sanggunians of the NCR for approval. And finally, the regional ordinance will be deemed approved when a majority (50% + 1 or 10 out of 17) of the local sanggunians have approved the measure.
CLRG's comments support the initiative to strengthen the policymaking powers of the MMDA but also refers to improvements such as: (1) clarifying the supremacy of regional ordinance over local ordinances; (2) review powers of the MMC; (3) the introduction of "consent legislation" format; (4) and resolving issues of implementation and inter-local cooperation among NCR local governments.
In case an NCR LGU would test the limits of their local autonomy and willingly defy the regional ordinance which its sanggunian has voted to disapprove; what are the options for the MMC/MMDA in the event of this policy crisis?
Raphael Montes Jr. (testifying before the TWG-Subcommittee on Metropolitan Manila Development, House of Representatives)
Read the full comments below.