LGUs asked: Secure permits for ECQ vehicles
Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon (The Freeman) - April 7, 2020 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines —  The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board-7 is requesting all local government units, other government agencies, and private companies to apply for special permits for vehicles being used to ferry workers to and from their work places during the enhanced community quarantine.

Under the ECQ, government authorities suspended mass transportation and operations of public utility vehicles. The suspension of the mass transport system poses a problem for workers in exempted and essential establishments.

LTFRB-7 Director Eduardo Montealto Jr. reminded the public that only those with special permits from LTFRB 7 are allowed to shuttle passengers of essential and exempted companies.

Montealto, in a statement, said that only PUVs with legitimate franchises or the Certificate of Public Convenience can be granted these special permits.

Non-compliance with these special permits will entail the vehicle being tagged as “colorum,” and liable operators could face fines of up to P1 million, depending on the vehicle being apprehended.

Montealto stressed that even if the public utility vehicle may have been issued a franchise from the LTFRB, but is plying the streets without a special permit during these times, the vehicle will still be considered “colorum.”

Special permits may be procured at a rate of P170/vehicle, good for three days.

However, Montealto assured the public that these special permits may be given to operators for free, if the LGUs or government agencies under contract with the transport operators are also offering the transport service for free.

He added that when ECQ was declared among the provinces and cities within the region, a total of 29 special permits were issued to a total of 55 vehicle units.

LGUs and agencies who applied for special permits include Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas (OPAV), Cebu provincial government, Lapu-Lapu City, Mandaue City, and Cebu City.

Montealto added that to avail of the free special permit, the concerned LGU should submit an endorsement letter to the LTFRB office, requesting for the grant of the special permit to a certain transport company, stating in said request the passengers who will be shuttled, and the name of the exempt establishment or essential industry classification whom the buses will cater to.  JMD (FREEMAN)

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