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ILOILO CITY – Further promotion of Business Permits and Licensing (BPLS) and other initiatives can help communities attract more businesses, improve their revenue collection and achieve local autonomy.

Such is the stand of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Region 6 which recently conducted an Orientation on New BPLS Standards and Regulatory Simplification for Local Government Units (RS4LGU).

The activity was divided into two schools in order to accommodate all LGUs throughout the region. The first school, participated by LGU representatives from the provinces of Aklan, Antique and Capiz, was held on June 1, 2017 at Smallville 21 Hotel, Mandurriao, Iloilo. The second school, attended by participants from the provinces of Guimaras and Iloilo as well as the highly-urbanized city of Iloilo, was held the day after at the same venue.

A total of 100 participants attended the first school, while the second school was graced by 105 target audiences. Local Government Operations Officers (LGOOs) and Business Processing and Licensing Officers (BPLOs) from the municipalities and cities comprised the participants.

LGOO V Christian Nagaynay updated the LGUs as to the region’s current status of implementation of the BPLS. According to the data gathered by the Local Governance Capability Development Division (LGCDD), the implementing division of BPLS in Region 6, 99 out of 101 cities and municipalities in Western Visayas were already able to streamline BPLS in their areas of responsibility.

Nagaynay also discussed the salient features of Joint Memorandum Circular 01-2016 or the Revised Standards in Processing Business Permits and Licenses in cities and municipalities. The revised BPLS standards direct the LGUs to process business permits within 1-2 days for new businesses or for renewal.

The implementation of the BPLS left a positive impact in the business climate of the region, said the DILG.

“The reform standards were able to attract a total of 57, 821 business establishments in the region, generating P442, 339, 257.11 from business taxes, fees and charges,” shared Roselyn B. Quintana, LGCDD chief.

Senior Fire Officer 3 Norman C. Valenzuela, chief of the Fire Safety Enforcement Section of the Bureau of Fire Protection Region VI tackled “Fire Safety Inspection Certificate Assessment and Inspection” and answered concerns regarding the matter. The Regional Director of the Bureau of Local Government Finance (BLGF), Dir. Gilbert B. Gumabay, meanwhile, oriented the participants on the Assessment of Business Taxes and Other Fees and shared tips on how LGUs can improve revenue collection.

BPLS Automation was introduced and explained to the participants by Engr. Joemar B. Magbanua of the Department of Information and Communication Technology (DICT). In his presentation, Magbanua enumerated the features of the electronic-BPLS (e-BPLS) software and the processes on how to install and access the application, among others.

LGOO V Janwen Gaspar, RS4LG coach, oriented the participants on the RS4LG Approach in Analyzing the LGU BPLS. Specifically, he presented an Introduction to Regulatory Simplification and oriented the participants on how to examine their LGUs BPLS using the Diagnosis Tool.

Aside from providing the municipal and city LGOOs and BPLOs more information and recent updates and developments on BPLS and RS4LGU, the activity also served as a venue for the LGUs to raise issues and concerns on the programs as well as to share their experiences in their implementation and recommendations on how to improve them.

By the end of the activity, the LGUs were able to formulate their BPLS and RS4LGU Action Plans to serve as their step-by-step guide in the implementation of the programs.

The Department will also be conducting an Orientation on BPLS Automation on July 24-28, 2016, to further introduce and champion the electronic way of business permitting and licensing in the region. (LGOO II Freda Mae L. Sorsano, DILG6)