By Dolly Yasa
BACOLOD City – The establishment of a sanitary landfill in the municipality of La Castellana, Negros Occidental is underway after it obtained the title for an 11.1-hectare property in Barangay Manghanoy.
The lot will host the town’s sanitary landfill that is geared to address the garbage woes of the town as well as provide livelihood opportunities for residents.
Mayor Rhumyla Nicor-Mangilimutan said the local government has paid the full amount of the lot worth about P8.8 million to the former owner who are the heirs of the Rodriguez family.
Mangilimutan said the title was transferred to the municipal government on April 18, 2022, but the check for P5.3 million that accounts for the remaining payment was turned over to the family on Friday, April 29.
The mayor recalled that in 2019, the local government initially paid P3.5 million after entering into a deed of conditional sale with the heirs of the Rodriguez family.
“Based on the deed of conditional sale, we can only pay the full amount once the title has been transferred under the name of the municipal government,” she said.
Mangilimutan said they have been called out several times by the Sangguniang Bayan amid allegations that the property to be used for the development of the sanitary landfill has been fully paid already by the local government.
“So, I just hope that this will clear things and put an end to the issue. The full payment was made after the transfer of the title to the municipal government,” she said.
In fact, it was favorable to the local government as we are allowed to utilize the lot following the initial payment provided under the deed of conditional sale, she pointed out.
The heirs of the Rodriguez family representative, Gerlie Rodriquez-Baron, confirmed that full payment was just made last week after all the requirements were complied.
“We are happy that our property has been chosen by the local government for the sanitary landfill development project that will address the garbage concerns of the town and help the residents as well,” Baron said.
Mangilimutan said the sanitary landfill will address the garbage problems not only of La Castellana but the adjacent municipalities of Isabela and Moises Padilla.
“We look forward to not just an ordinary landfill that can address our garbage problems, but also job generation for the constituents near the area and at the same time livelihood for those who want to sell there,” she said, adding that “our plan is to make it an eco-friendly sanitary landfill.”
The mayor also said that as initial development, they will utilize the P30 million fund from the Provincial Government of Negros Occidental after the election banning period.
However, she said that they need more funds so the local government has a loan package proposal for sanitary landfill development that includes heavy equipment, garbage collector and dump trucks for the barangays.
The P120-million fund needed for sanitary landfill forms part of the around P320 million loan they are eyeing to access from the Land Bank of the Philippines or Development Bank of the Philippines.
Moreover, Mangilimutan said they aim to complete the sanitary development in the next three years.
As a first class municipality, La Castellana is fast growing when it comes to economy thus, problems on garbage, especially in Barangay Robles, should be addressed, the mayor added.
“Aside from being a necessity, the establishment of a sanitary landfill is provided under the law. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources has been demanding us to have our own facility,” she said.