Image Posted for apu-Lapu City Public Market Hearing
Lapu-Lapu City Public Market Hearing

28 September 2023

PRESS RELEASE Lapu-Lapu City held a public hearing last Tuesday on the proposed rate increase on market stall rentals, and it went smoothly. But market sellers complained of the rate increase but were evasive when Mayor Junard "Ahong" Chan asked then, revealing their profit, or "ginansiya". Market sellers have enjoyed a wide profit margin through the years for their 21-year-old stall rental rates. Fish vendors, for example, enjoy their daily profit but only pay a meager P100 monthly rental, plus P10 for a full bañera fish or P5 for a half-filled bañera.

They are complaining about the proposed rent rate increase of P150 per day. Meat vendors pay only P150 per month in rental, which will be increased in the proposed rate to P150 per day. Lapu-Lapu City Public Market has a total of 701 stalls and 400 to 500 ambulant vendors, making it one of the city’s revenue earners. But the mayor reasoned out that the city government will be at a loss if it does not increase its stall rental rates. "Kung alkase pirmi ang gobyerno, aw, manirado na lang ta o pasirad-an ta sa DENR kay wa tay tarong nga STP," he told the vendors. Being a highly urbanized city (HUC), Mayor Chan said it is incumbent upon the city to develop their market facility and have a functional sewage treatment plant (STP). STP is the facility that regulates market waste and odor.

And the current STP nowadays costs millions. The mayor added that the high cost of maintaining a public market prompted their neighboring cities to privatize their market or let a private company manage the facility. Then the city just collects revenues from this managing company. During the public hearing, the majority of vendors aired their gripes, saying they incurred huge losses during lockdown and were devastated by Typhoon Odette.

They are just now slowly making headway in their business, but they are worried about this proposed rate increase. Mayor Chan told them that if they were at a loss, they should have ceased operating years ago and sold their stall rights because many are waiting to acquire them. But stall owners did not sell their rights. Apparently they are having the heyday of the old, 21-year-old rental rates and raking in big profits.

Mayor, Vice Mayor Celsie Sitoy, and city councilors listened to stall occupants who each gave their stall rate counter proposal during last Tuesday’s public hearing. This is the proposed ordinance of Councilors Climaco Tatoy Jr. and Annabeth Cuizon, which is an ordinance amending City Ordinance No. 029-2007, "The Revised Market Code of 2007 of the City of Lapu-Lapu. PIO

Image Posted for apu-Lapu City Public Market Hearing Image Posted for apu-Lapu City Public Market Hearing Image Posted for apu-Lapu City Public Market Hearing Image Posted for apu-Lapu City Public Market Hearing