Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno restated his firm commitment to complete real property tax administration reforms during the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) and Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with pilot local government units (LGUs) and partner state universities and colleges to implement the Local Governance Reform Project (LGRP).
“This event marks a significant milestone for the LGRP as we formally jumpstart our partnership with the 20 pilot LGUs and partner state universities and colleges aimed at improving real property tax administration,” said Secretary Diokno in his keynote message on March 2, 2023.
The LGRP is a strategic and comprehensive program that seeks to strengthen the revenue generation capacities of LGUs. According to Secretary Diokno, it will serve as a launchpad for more efficient, effective, and equitable public service delivery.
“I know this was delayed because of the pandemic, but I’m committed to complete this project before the 2025 elections,” Secretary Diokno added.
The LGRP will boost LGU revenue generation by:
● Strengthening the operating environment of real property tax generation and management through better policies and institutional structures;
● Enhancing LGU management tools through information technology and modern systems; and
● Implementing support programs aimed at enhancing the competencies of local assessors and treasurers.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) provided funding support to the LGRP 2020-2024 to help improve local government revenue mobilization, strengthening LGU performance and delivery of local public service.
“This partnership is an opportunity for the selected pilot LGUs to significantly enhance real property taxation, update their schedule of market values and tax maps, and avail of appropriate support to enhance their public service delivery,” said Secretary Diokno.
The LGRP has four (4) outputs: (i) institutional development and policy support for property valuation strengthened; (ii) property tax valuation database and information systems implemented; (iii) real property taxation of selected LGUs enhanced; and (iv) local assessors professionalized.
The MOA between the Department of Finance – Bureau of Local Government Finance (DOF-BLGF) and the twenty (20) pilot LGUs formalizes the partnership agreement to implement the LGRP technical assistance for the updating of tax maps and schedules of market values (SMVs) and conduct of Tax Compliance Reviews and Tax Impact Studies. It also mandates the selected LGUs to carry over and have their updated SMVs approved and to legislate the new tax rates taking into account findings from the studies and updated tax maps.
On the other hand, the MOU between the DOF-BLGF and the two (2) academic institutions kicks off the partnership agreement for the conduct of capacity development for local assessors.
The DOF, through the BLGF, will work closely with LGUs to help with the proper implementation of the project.