Traffic Emergency Powers Passed Congress; Bill Designates Sec. Tugade as Traffic Czar

The bill granting government emergency powers to address the traffic crisis that is gripping the country's urban center losing billions of estimated revenue was finally approved on final reading by the House of Representatives after nearly three years of legislative hurdles.

House Bill 6425 or the "Traffic Crisis Act of 2017. Makiisa, Makisama, Magkaisa" - propose to adopt "responsive, effective, and comprehensive measures," that will solve the crisis through various immediate solutions that include the putting up of mass transportation in Metro Manila, Metro Cebu and Metro Davao.

The controversial and timely bill - passed after receiving 188 affirmative votes, with eight congressmen voting against - consolidates 14 bills and one resolution that were endorsed by the Duterte administration.

Among the authors of the Legislative measures were key former and current House leaders, including Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (PDP-Laban, Pampanga); former Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez (PDP-Laban, Davao del Norte); Minority Leader Danilo Suarez (Lakas-CMD, Quezon); Majority Leader Rolando Andaya (PDP-Laban, Camarines Sur); Reps. Rodolfo Fariñas (PDP-Laban, Ilocos Norte); Winston Castelo (PDP-Laban, Quezon City); Federico Sandoval (PDP-Laban, Navotas); and Gus Tambunting (PDP-Laban, Parañaque City).

President Rody Duterte himself had previously moved for the immediate approval of the traffic emergency power measures, the bill proposes to harmonize all traffic rules, regulations, ordinances, and other issuances in the covered metropolitan areas. It will also reform, modernize, and streamline the mass transportation systems.

The House Bill approved by the Lower House of Congress (HB 6425) designates the Secretary of the Department of Transportation, Sec. Art Tugade under the Duterte admin, as the de officio Traffic chief who will be clothed with an expansive authority aimed at immediately putting an end to land transport crisis.

He will be clothed with power of control and supervision over all land transportation agencies, including the Metro Manila Development Authority, the proposed Metropolitan Cebu Traffic Coordinating Council, and the proposed Davao Administrator.

The House Bill provides for a three-year effectivity period unless sooner withdrawn by Congress. Under the bill, completion of a route rationalization for public utility vehicles will have to be realized within eight months upon its enactment.

The bill also creates Special Traffic Crisis Courts that will have exclusive jurisdiction to hear and resolve allactions emanating from the implementation of the Traffic Crisis Act.

Source: Manila Bulletin

Traffic Emergency Powers Passed Congress; Bill Designates Sec. Tugade as Traffic Czar Traffic Emergency Powers Passed Congress; Bill Designates Sec. Tugade as Traffic Czar Reviewed by Phil Newsome on December 05, 2018 Rating: 5
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