There are a lot of reasons for you to care about the impending enactment of “The Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018.” For one thing, it will make life much easier for those who want to set up business.
Among the highlights of the proposed measure is its institutionalization of streamlined procedures for the issuance of local business licenses, clearances, and permits.
“In a lot of ways, the spirit of the measure reflects the culture of efficiency that President Rodrigo Duterte promoted when he was still Davao City mayor,” said Davao City Congressman Karlo Nograles, one of its main authors in the House of Representatives.
“He has repeatedly said that it’s his pet peeve to see people standing in long queues, so it makes sense that he would want the same level of efficiency from all over the country,” Nograles said.
Specifically, Section 11 of the measure says that a single or unified business application form shall be used in processing new application or business permits and business renewals which consolidates all the information of the applicant or request party by various local government departments.
This covers local taxes and clearances, building clearance, sanitary permit, zoning clearance, and other specific local government unit requirements, including the fire clearance from the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP).
The Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act directs all LGUs to set up a one-stop business facilitation service or “business one stop shop.” It will receive and process manual and/or electronic submission of application for license, clearance, permit or authorization.
The business one stop shop shall feature the co-location of the offices of the treasury, business permit and licensing office, zoning office, BFP, and other relevant departments engaged in starting a business or dealing with construction permits.
Under the measure, LGUs are mandated to automate their business permitting and licensing system or set up an electronic business one stop shop within a period of three years upon enactment.
“This will guarantee more efficient business registration processes,” Nograles noted. He said the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) shall provide the LGUs with the software needed for the computerization of their business permit and licensing system.
To lessen the transaction requirements, other local clearances such as, but not limited to, sanitary permits, environmental and agricultural clearances shall be issued together with the business permit. The business permit shall have a validity of one year.
Meanwhile, barangay clearances and permits related to doing business shall be applied, issued, and collected by the city/municipality in accordance with the prescribed proceeding time of the Act, provided, that the share in the collections shall be remitted to the respective barangays.