StaySafe.ph app formally launched by Muntinlupa City and DOH

In an effort to strengthen its COVID-19 response and contact tracing efforts, the City Government of Muntinlupa in partnership with the Department of Health recently launched the Staysafe.PH app as the official digital contact tracing system in the city and will implement a “No QR Code, No Entry Policy” in all local establishments.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi, Department of Health exec Dr. Anatoly de los Santos, and other local officials led the launching event at Festival Mall Alabang this past Friday.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi personally scanned the QR code using the StaySafe.ph app at Festival Mall, Filinvest City, Alabang. (source – Muntinlupa PIO)
Mayor Fresnedi delivering his remarks during the launch event inside Festival Mall. (source – Muntinlupa PIO)

Fresnedi said the adoption of StaySafe.PH in Muntinlupa was executed in compliance with the national government’s recommendation for a uniformed contact tracing system to prevent further COVID-19 transmission, especially with the detection of the B.1.1.7. SARS-CoV-2 variant (UK variant) in the country.

Also joining the ceremony were Congressman Ruffy Biazon, City Health Officer Dra. Maria Teresa Tuliao, Filinvest Land senior vice president Joselito Santos, Committee on Health and Sanitation chairman Coun. Allan Rey Camilon, City Administrator Engr. Allan Cachuela, MultiSys Technologies Corporation CEO David Almirol, and other local executives.

Following the launch event, members of the Muntinlupa City StaySafe.Ph Task Force will conduct an city-wide inspection to ensure compliance of local public and private establishments.

Muntinlupa City Council passed City Ordinance No. 2020-181 mandating the installation and use of Staysafe.PH system as an automated contact tracing through the use of QR Codes in all commercial establishments, workplaces, churches, and government offices in the city.

All residents and visitors who will enter, work, or do business in all indoor or enclosed public and private establishments in Muntinlupa shall be required to download and register at the StaySafe.PH application and secure a unique QR Code which they can store on their phone or print for physical copy. QR Codes for non-smartphone user registrants shall be generated by their respective barangays and shall be distributed to where the registrant resides.

Under the local ordinance, all establishments in the city are mandated to designate personnel to ensure each individual who will enter their premises possesses a StaySafe.PH unique personal QR Code. All customers, visitors, and employees of the public and private establishments shall not be allowed entry unless they present their own QR Code.

Allowing other person to use an individual’s unique QR Code to gain entry into the premises of the covered establishment and intentionally registering more than once for the purpose of possessing more than one unique personal QR Code shall be prohibited. Covered establishments shall be required to transmit a copy of their digital log book to the City Health Office on a daily basis for data integration.

For non-compliant establishments, violators will be charged with P2,000 penalty and suspension of franchise or business permit until violation has been rectified for first offense, P3,000 for second offense, and suspension or revocation of franchise or business permit including a P5,000 penalty for the third offense. In case the offender is a government official or employee, the maximum penalty shall be imposed including the filing of administrative, civil, or criminal action.

Recently, the Department of the Interior and Local Government issued MC No.2020-129 enjoining local government units to use of StaySafe.PH v.2 application system as the official social distancing, health condition reporting, and contact tracing system that will assist in the government’s response to COVID-19.

As of January 28, 2021, Muntinlupa City has 64 active cases, 5,326 confirmed cases with 5,094 recoveries, 168 reported deaths, 71 suspect cases, and 389 probable cases.

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The above information was provided by the City Government of Muntinlupa for the purpose of public information and transparency. Some parts were edited for this website.

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HOT STAR Large Fried Chicken in Alabang

If you are looking for fried chicken to eat here in South Metro Manila, there are plenty of places to find them such as Jollibee, KFC, Popeyes and McDonald’s among the many restaurants. You can even find fried chicken meals served in convenience stores like Ministop, 7-Eleven and FamilyMart. Rest assured the mentioned business joints provide a lot of fried chicken whenever you are in Las Piñas, Parañaque and Muntinlupa.

There is one food joint that stand out among them all – HOT STAR Large Fried Chicken Philippines. With its newest branch located inside Festival Mall in Filinvest City, Alabang, HOT STAR is making a comeback here in South Metro Manila. Previously they had a branch along Presidents Avenue, Barangay BF Homes in Parañaque City and I ate there a number of times while they lasted. That particular branch closed down a few years ago so it was nice to see them open a new one in Alabang (note: their space is shared with Dakasi).

The commercial space of HOT STAR with Dakasi.

For the newcomers reading this, the HOT STAR business started in Taiwan and has overseas branches. They are best known for selling the 12-inch fried chicken which has a nugget-like shape but really large and quite filling.

At their Festival Mall branch, I had two stops there. The first time I was there, I joined the line to order myself a meal composed of their signature 12-inch fried chicken (referred to as the Signature XXL Chicken), rice and a drink. When asked for what type and what flavor the chicken should be, I chose the original type flavored with salt and pepper. Soon enough I got served and went to a vacant table.

The 12-inch signature fried chicken of HOT STAR.

Looking at the 12-inch original, salt-and-pepper fried chicken, it really was exactly as I remembered what was served to customers at the previous branch in BF Homes. It was also a bit challenging to cut into pieces given its formation and texture, so there were moments when I had to take the chicken by hand and pull it apart before trying to cut it into pieces with the plastic utensils.

As before, the 12-inch signature fried chicken is pretty tasty on its own. It was tasty enough, I did not bother to use any condiments. What is also notable about it is that it sure has a lot of content of chicken meat to consume. In fact, it was more than enough to fill the stomach. While this might sound unusual to you, this is pretty normal given my previous dining experience at HOT STAR BF Homes. That being said, I had a tasty and really satisfying meal there at HOT STAR Filinvest.

A few weeks later, I returned to the Festival Mall branch mainly to take home one of their newer foods – the Cheese Bomb. After driving home with the chicken from the mall, I got home and placed it on a plate.

This is what the Cheese Bomb looks like on the outside.

On the surface, the Cheese Bomb fried chicken has a different shape compared to the signature fried chicken. It looked ordinary on the outside but it is the cheese content inside the makes the big different not only in terms of content but also on flavor. As I ate the Cheese Bomb, I really felt that fine combined taste of fried chicken and cheese in my mouth and it only made me want to keep consuming until it all ran out. I got my money’s worth.

The cheese of Cheese Bomb exposed.
A closer look at the Cheese Bomb. The cheese itself is tasty.

To put it in short, I can say that the 12-inch signature fried chicken and the Cheese Bomb were both well cooked by HOT STAR Festival Mall and were properly prepared. It is notable that the two fried chicken variants were pretty flavorful respectively which shows that the cooks made them with the utmost care for me. As such, I highly recommend the 12-inch signature fried chicken and the Cheese Bomb to anyone who loves fried chicken. I got my money’s worth and so should you.

So if you happen to be in the Alabang area and you crave for fried chicken, you should visit HOT STAR at Festival Mall. They are on the ground floor level of the mall. Keep in mind that HOT STAR has several other types of food to offer such as spaghetti, rice bowl meals, burgers and fries, and chicken wings to name some. HOT STAR is a standout among the sellers of friend chicken here in South Metro Manila.

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Comic Quest announces closure!

Comic Quest, a notable retailer of comic books and geek stuff (including premium products like action figures) here in the Philippines, announced yesterday that it will be closing its 35-year-old business due to the tremendous economic difficulties related to, unsurprisingly, the ongoing pandemic and also the disrupted state of the international distribution of comic books. Before the end comes, however, a Farewell Sale at their SM Megamall branch in Mandaluyong City has launched and will last until sometime in October. The said sale will have all items discounted at least 50%.

In my experience of the past decade, as a resident of Alabang, Muntinlupa, I often bought new comic books (especially Wonder Woman) at the Festival Mall Alabang branch of Comic Quest. It was also at the same store located a short walk away from the cinemas where I also ordered and received hardback editions of EC Comics Archives. Comic Quest Alabang was a favorite weekend destination of mine for many years. Even before I became a collector of comic books (specifically superhero comics), I first heard about Comic Quest way back in 1990 in the classroom where I had a few classmates who bought comic books from them. Back in the 1990s, Comic Quest had a branch in Makati and it was there where I bought Web of Spider-Man #100 in 1993.

As time passed by, my personal interest in comic books waned and I actually stopped buying comic books (both new and old) shortly before the lockdown here in the Philippines was implemented. The pandemic and related lockdown brought entire economies down worldwide and the Philippines was not spared. It is also depressing to learn that many people lost their jobs as well as their income. No disposable income, no more demand for entertainment products like comic books, theatrical showing of movies, shows and the like. The priority now of people living during the pandemic goes to the essentials.

Yesterday, hours after Comic Quest’s closure announcement, I took the opportunity to visit and see their Festival Mall branch in Alabang. It is gone!

The commercial space in the middle used to be occupied by Comic Quest inside Festival Mall. This picture was taken hours after the closure announcement.

Comic Quest’s decision to close down is understandable and acceptable. They did the best they could to survive and prevent their employees from becoming unemployed until the pandemic-related depression overwhelmed them (as well as the many other businesses of different types and sizes).

Just a few years ago, another comic book specialty retailer had to close down their Alabang Town Center branch. It’s clear that comic books as a business continues to fail especially now that people are often online and find their kind of stuff through digital services/retailers.

In closing this, posted below for your reference is the complete closure announcement of Comic Quest. The retailer will be missed!

This is a special announcement for all our valued customers. We hope you ‘re doing well and staying safe during this difficult time.

We just want to let you know that because of the combined pressure of the pandemic, as well as the disruption of the global distribution of comic books, we’ve had to make the difficult decision to begin the process of closing down Comic Quest. It is and has been an extremely challenging time for us, and we feel that this is our best option moving forward.

It has been a long and amazing road, from our earliest days in our first branch at BF Homes in Alabang, to Greenhills to Makati to multiple branches as far away as SM Cebu. But now the time has come to say goodbye, and let all of you know how much we appreciate being given the chance to be part of the comic book industry.

We want to thank each and every one of you for being one of our valuable loyal customers and a very important member of the Comic Quest family. We wouldn’t have reached 35 wonderful years in business without loyal customers like you. Our sincerest and most heartfelt thanks for being with us through all these years.

In line with our decision, we’re holding a special FAREWELL SALE from September 16th and into October, at our SM Megamall branch. During this time we will be selling ALL items from at least 50% off and up.

Please help us spread the word and share this message with other friends and collectors whom you think might be interested.

While our time in this wonderful industry comes to an end, we’re wishing you many more years of happy collecting! And in the words of the great Stan Lee- Excelsior!

Best wishes,

Comic Quest

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

Mayor Fresnedi envisions Muntinlupa to be a “smart city,” leads its 25th anniversary

Mayor Fresnedi envisions Muntinlupa to be a “smart city,” leads its 25th anniversary

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Muntinlupa Mayor Jaime Fresnedi with local officials in the celebration of the town’s silver anniversary last March 2. In his message, Fresnedi accounted Muntinlupa’s progress to its residents which he claimed as the city’s greatest resource. The local exec also highlighted the City Government’s sustainability initiatives in developing Muntinlupa as a “smart city” with focus on programs for education. (source – Muntinlupa PIO)

This past Sunday (March 1, 2020) was the 25th anniversary of Muntinlupa as a City highlighting the historical date of March 1, 1995 which was the day when then Philippine President Fidel V. Ramos signed into law the key legislation (Republic Act Number 7926) that converted Muntinlupa from a municipality into a city.

On the morning of March 2 at the City Hall grounds, the City Government commemorated the silver anniversary. While considered as one of the youngest cities in the Philippines, Muntinlupa has become a front runner in its class in terms of competitiveness and quality of life for its residents.

The City Government organized a simple program for the city’s 25th founding anniversary and the celebration kicked off with a Thanksgiving Mass followed by a flag raising ceremony. Those who attended the program were Congressman Ruffy Biazon, Mayor Jaime Fresnedi, Vice-mayor Temy Simundac, City Councilors, City Administrator Engr. Allan Cachuela, barangay officials, and partners from the private sector and national government agencies.

In his message, Mayor Fresnedi accounted Muntinlupa’s progress to its residents which he claimed as the city’s greatest resource. He also highlighted sustainability efforts of the City Government in developing Muntinlupa as a “smart city” with focus on programs for education.

“As we look forward to the coming years, we are certain that the direction of Muntinlupa is only geared towards development and becoming a smart city of the future. For this reason that I commit to prepare every Muntinlupeño, focusing on their education, and to construct necessary infrastructure to enable residents face new challenges and adapt to emerging trends,” Fresnedi said.

The mayor highlighted the City Government’s initiative on expanding scholarship program from elementary to graduate school. He noted the recent allowance hike, including the increase of cash gifts awarded to board topnotchers and latin honor graduates. Muntinlupa City holds the highest number of scholarship program beneficiaries in the country with over 71,000 scholars.

Further, Fresnedi highlighted the construction of four school building, Aquatic Center, Track and Field Oval, groundbreaking of engineering college Colegio de Muntinlupa’s Building 2, and among others.

It is remembered that on March 1, 1995, Muntinlupa was converted from a municipality to a highly urbanized city and became the 65th city of the Philippines by virtue of Republic Act 7926. Today, it has transformed as one of the leading investment hubs in the country with nine equally progressive barangays and a population of 504,509.

The city has been recognized as a model city in the country bench-marked by LGUs in the country and garnered several awards from various governing bodies.

Some of the citations include the Seal of Good Governance from DILG, Seal of Child-Friendly Local Governance from Regional Committee for Welfare of Children, Red Orchid Award, Jose Rizal Award for the fourth consecutive year, Gawad Bayanihan Award, Rank 1 (NCR) for Local Revenue Collection from Economic Enterprises, Rank 3 (NCR) for Manila Bay Clean-up Rehabilitation and Preservation Program, citation from National Anti-Drug Abuse Council (ADAC), Gawad Pilak from the Landbank of the Philippines, Most Business-Friendly City Award in 2018, Green Banner Award and Outstanding LGU in Nutrition Program Management in 2018, MERALCO Luminaries Award in 2018, Government Efficiency and Resilience Award (3rd Place) from National Competitiveness Council in 2017 and 2018, respectively; and Union Internationale des Transports Publics Awards in 2017, among others.


This is an official Press Release issued by the City Government of Muntinlupa.

 

 

Kong VR Now Open at Festival Mall in Alabang

Among the shopping malls of South Metro Manila (specifically Muntinlupa, Parañaque and Las Piñas), Festival Mall in Filinvest City, Alabang, has been a hot spot for people who wish to immerse themselves with virtual reality by availing the services and facilities of VR entertainment joints in the said mall.

Recently a brand new virtual reality entertainment joint opened at the 2nd level of Festival Mall and it is called Kong VR. It is located just steps away from Decathlon.

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Kong VR occupies this spacious spot of Festival Mall. Lots of high-tech, amusement equipment inside.

Kong VR describes itself as Korea’s top virtual reality theme park. Their Festival Mall branch has a lot of staffers waiting for customers to come in, pay fees and enjoy the many VR amusement experiences (including a King Kong-related game that’s supposed to test players’ balance and perception) they are offering. They also have lots of high-tech equipment inside as well as some machines that remind me of the video arcade experience.

Their featured VR experiences include Top Adventure VR, Beat Saber, Top Vulcan, Z-Town, and Arabian Nights to name some.

While I’m not much of a fan of virtual reality, I find their joint and offers interesting. Perhaps someday I’ll try one or two of their amusement experiences.

Has anyone among you, my readers, experienced any of the VR experiences there at Kong VR at Festival Mall? Please post a comment below.

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Someone playing Beat Saber.

All others reading this….if you are interested in Kong VR, visit them at Festival Mall.


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Also my fantasy book The World of Havenor is still available in paperback and e-book format. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments.

 

Muntinlupa City Government Provides Big-time Assistance to Taal Volcano Eruption Victims

The City Government of Muntinlupa proved it has the heart to assist others who badly need help in times of disaster as the local authorities approved big-time relief for the many victims of the recent Taal Volcano eruption.

Firstly, the City Council of Muntinlupa approved on January 14 the Mayor Jaime Fresnedi’s proposal of a P3,000,000 donation for the municipalities of Talisay, Laurel & Agoncillo, Batangas as aide for the victims of Taal Volcano eruption for their recovery and rehabilitation.

Fresnedi called for the public to continue to stand in prayer for the safety of affected families in Batangas and encouraged city residents to participate in donation drives.

Secondly, the City Government sent 3,417 grocery packs and 381 six-liter bottles of water to evacuation centers in coordination with Batangas Incident Command Post in Fernando Air Base, Lipa City on January 15. Muntinlupa Social Services Department head Analyn Mercado confirmed that the said relief packs went to the cities and municipalities of Calaca, Alfonso, Nasugbu, Batangas, Bauan, San Pascual, Balayan, and Sto. Tomas

Relief packs given to evacuees include canned goods, water, rice, sleeping mats, utensils, clothes, and other non-food items. Mercado added that an additional 300 sacks of rice and another 2,828 six-liter bottles of water will be distributed to the evacuees in the following days.

The City Government of Muntinlupa is still accepting any kind of donations at Muntinlupa Resiliency Building (Hall of Justice Compound) in Brgy. Tunasan or Annex Building, Muntinlupa City Hall.

To donate, the public may coordinate with SSD at (02) 8861 6223 and may look for Ms. Analyn Mercado.

Since Taal Volcano erupted, thousands of people living in close proximity had no choice but to leave their homes and possessions behind, occupy evacuation centers and hang on as more forms of assistance are coming. The City Government of Muntinlupa and several others are organization donation drives and public assistance campaigns for the victims. If you want to help, now is the time.

My Observations: Ash Monday

Here in the Philippines, Taal Volcano erupted on January 12 pushing a massive amount of volcanic ash high up into the air. A short time later, the ash spread around and reached parts of Metro Manila.

The next morning, I went out for my usual hike here in Muntinlupa City going to Filinvest City. Along the way while inside our village, the volcanic ash were around me – on the side of the roads, the sidewalks, on top the leaves of some trees and over the surfaces of vehicles parked nearby. There was also collected ash that got wet as it rained the previous night.

Then I visited the local village park and saw the following…

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At the park.

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Volcanic ash still somewhat wet on this slide.

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Look at all that wet ash.

I hiked on to Filinvest City. As light from the sun was bright enough, the ash on the road and the sidewalk became clearer. There were also prints of shoes, slippers and tire tracks spotted. I took the opportunity to photograph them.

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Lots of ash on the surface of the road in Filinvest City, Alabang.

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The view outside Commercenter.

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This guy was the first Filinvest City cleaner (he wore a Filinvest City uniform) I saw along Commerce Avenue.

I went further to Festival Mall. Unsurprisingly their roads and parking lots had lots of ash around. As I walked on, I wondered how many people with equipment they will deploy to clean up their parking spaces.

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At one of the parking lots of Festival Mall.

So I saw a lot about the volcanic ash in Alabang that morning. Certain things I saw during my morning hike reminded me a bit of what I saw back in 1991 regarding the volcanic ash Mount Pinatubo released. Metro Manila was not spared back then.

 Still nothing prepared me for the volcanic ash that I saw as I drove from Alabang to our office in Laguna via the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX). As many vehicles moved both ways along the highway, there as a lot of Taal Volcano’s ash the view became less visible on certain stretches.

Then I took a short stopover at one of the gas stations along the SLEX. Here is what I saw.

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So much volcanic ash on the open space.

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A maintenance worker struggles to collect the volcanic ash.

The gas station was dirty with the volcanic ash. Many cars that were there were also dirty and people, including the maintenance workers, were seen wearing face masks. I witnessed one maintenance worker near me doing clean-up work by moving the volcanic ash into a pile and then collecting them and storing them into a black garbage bag.

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More of the ash collected at the place.

Seeing him work like that made me pray that he and all other personnel assigned to do cleaning will get compensated well by their respective employers. There is so much Taal Volcano ash around, it will take quite some time and effort before achieving cleanliness.

I also pray that the victims – those who live in close proximity to Taal Volcano – will receive sufficient assistance from the local authorities as well as private donors or groups doing charity work. This is because those victims’ lives got disrupted and many of them had to leave their homes temporarily.

One credible organization to donate to is Operation Blessing Foundation Philippines which announced already its campaign to help Taal Volcano victims. Visit their website right here. Another worthy organization accepting donations is New Life Community Care.

The victims of the natural disaster need our help and prayers. Remember that.

So that’s it. January 13, 2020 will be remembered as one of the most unusual Mondays I had in many years. Given the tremendous amount of volcanic ash spotted EVERYWHERE I went that day, it is fitting for me to call the day as Ash Monday.


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Also my fantasy book The World of Havenor is still available in paperback and e-book format. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

 

 

Muntinlupa Real Property Taxpayers to Receive 10% Discount Upon Timely Payment

The City Government of Muntinlupa announced yesterday the schedule of payment of real property tax in their city for 2020 and also launched its incentives program for RPT payers who will pay on or before quarterly deadline.

Muntinlupa City Treasurer’s Office released the deadline of payment of real property tax on the following dates: March 1, 2020 (1st Installment, Q1), June 30, 2020 (2nd Installment, Q2), September 30, 2020 (3rd Installment, Q3), and December 31, 2020 (4th Installment, Q4).

Taxpayers with no delinquency who shall pay their real property taxes on or before deadlines of payment are entitled to a ten percent (10%) discount.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi lauded this incentive system as it will boost tax revenues for the city to be utilized in various programs and services for the city residents. The mayor said the City Government shifts in being more customer-driven which accelerates public services, bringing ease transactions for the public.

RPT payers in Muntinlupa can also pay their taxes at Muntinlupa Online Real-Property Payment System (MORPS) through the electronic banking system of the Land Bank of the Philippines.

The RPT e-Payment system, first of its kind in Metro Manila, aims to course transaction of its major taxpayers through electronic channels to provide them with efficient and less-time consuming delivery of services.

An interface with MORPS will handle real-time property tax payment and can process transactions in less than 15 minutes. An easy and taxpayer-friendly application for every Muntinlupenos, it targets to speed up the transaction for the convenience of taxpayers and the reduction of red-tape and under-the-table propositions.

Fresnedi encouraged Muntinlupeños to pay their respective bills ahead of time to avoid penalties.

While MCTO introduced the incentive program, it also noted that upon expiration of the periods given, an interest of two percent (2%) per month not exceeding 36 months or 72% shall be imposed upon delinquent properties for failure to pay the basic real property tax or any other tax levied under the Revenue Code.

For more information, RPT payers can log-in to http://www.muntinlupacity.gov.ph/RPT/ or visit the City Treasurer’s Office located at Ground Floor, Main Building, Muntinlupa City Hall with tel nos. 8862-2525 loc. 120 or 8862-1491.

Muntinlupa City Government Organizes Business Permit Renewal until January 20, awards early taxpayers

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Top Ten “Early Bird” Taxpayers in the 2020 Muntinlupa Business Permit Renewal receive cerficates of recognition and grocery packages from the City Government. Mayor Jaime Fresnedi meets early taxpayers and extended his gratitude to the business owners for renewing their businesses in the city on January 2. The business renewal event will run from January 2- 20 at Muntinlupa Sports Complex, Tunasan. (source – Muntinlupa PIO)

The City Government of Muntinlupa awarded early taxpayers with incentives and grocery packages for being the first of many who applied and settled their dues in the 2020 Muntinlupa Business Permit Renewal which will run until January 20.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi awarded certificates of recognition and grocery packages to the Top Ten Early Taxpayers in this year’s Business Permit Renewal on January 2. The Top Ten Early Taxpayers were the following: Abraham Tiro (Mama Nene Store), Lani Santos (Lito and Lani Food House), Josielyn Delez (E.J.D. Mini Store), Josephine Dejan (FDA Dejan Construction Services), Cesar Bronola Lastrilla (Mercy Salon), Milagros Salvador (Mila and Noli Scrap Woods), Elizabeth Sabalboro (Beth Sari-Sari Store), Ma. Pinky Lynsey (MPLG Begona Trading), Cynthia Olaes (Cynthia’s Sari-Sari Store), and Cherrie Flores (Mini-Mini Store).

The mayor thanked the business owners for their punctuality in paying their dues and renewing their businesses in the city. Fresnedi also urged other locators to avoid penalties and skip “rush days” of registration nearing the deadline.

The 2020 Business Permit Renewal officially started on the morning of January 2 and will conclude on January 20. Currently, there are 15,708 registered business in the city. The Muntinlupa Business Permits and Licensing Office recorded a significant increase of over 187% in business tax collection over the past seven years.

For the convenience of the taxpayers, a One-Stop Shop arrangement in the Business Permit Renewal Hub has been installed at the Muntinlupa Sports Complex in Barangay Tunasan. Requirements from Barangay Halls and Regulatory Offices can be acquired in the location of the Renewal as representatives of said agencies will be rendering service simultaneously.

Taxpayers can pay using Debit Cards in the renewal event. Mobile ATMs as well as a Closed-Circuit Television System were also installed across the venue. Business owners registering in the renewal may also access the internet through a free wi-fi connection.

Making matters even more convenient is the shuttle service provided for clients going to the venue. The pick-up points are located at Muntinlupa City Hall Quadrangle in Putatan and Muntinlupa City Public Market in Alabang.

The list of requirements is posted in Muntinlupa BPLO Facebook page at fb.com/bplo.muntinlupa. For inquiries, you may call the department’s hotline at 8317-9964 or email at bplo.muntinlupa@yahoo.com.

New Skyway Ramp to Open on December 1

Hi everyone! Have you been struggling with the constant heavy traffic along the northbound lane of the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) since September due to the construction of a Skyway extension project (planned to reach Susana Heights) within the Alabang viaduct area?

Well here are the good news: effective December 1, 2019, the third lane of the at-grade level of the Skyway will be re-opened and the brand new, two-lane ramp connecting the Alabang viaduct to the elevated Skyway will be opened to the public!

The anticipated developments should result an improvement of the flow of traffic going north.

“These enhancements will ensure that there will be five lanes available to northbound SLEX vehicles during rush hours, even as we go full blast with the construction of the Skyway Extension project. Motorists will be able to use the original three lanes at the at-grade section, plus 2 more lanes at the elevated section,” San Miguel Corporation (SMC) president and chief operating officer Ramon S. Ang said according to the press release.

Due to the construction of the new ramp started this past September, traffic worsened as road space was reduced. What used to be five lanes on the northbound direction of the SLEX at the Alabang viaduct was narrowed down to three lanes. The City Government of Muntinlupa itself implemented a one-way traffic scheme along the east service road in connection to the construction.

Skyway managers made the hard adjustments by reconfiguring and maximizing the first section of the elevated Skyway coming from the Alabang-Zapote road to three lanes, from the original two.

The operators stated that with the new ramp connecting to the elevated section, northbound traffic from SLEX can be accommodated without significantly impacting traffic coming from the Alabang-Zapote road.

It was pointed out that the original design for the Alabang-Zapote road Skyway ramp, built by the previous concessionaire, is one lane northbound and one lane southbound. At certain times in the morning, when traffic is heaviest, both lanes are used for northbound traffic.

As such, they emphasized that the advantage of the new three-lane configuration at the start of the elevated portion is that lane assignments can be easily adjusted depending on traffic volume. Even with the new ramp in effect, motorists coming from the Alabang-Zapote road will retain the use of one to two lanes, depending on traffic volume.

With regards to night-time southbound traffic, which normally gets heavy, more or all lanes—including the two lanes on the new ramp–can be assigned for southbound use.

To put things in perspective, the Skyway Extension project is an initiative by SMC worth P10 billion designed to extend the Skyway from Alabang to SLEX near  Susana Heights and the Muntinlupa-Cavite Expressway (MCX). Completion of the whole project is set for December 2020. By then , there should be three additional northbound lanes and two southbound lanes on either side of the existing SLEX. It will allow both northbound and southbound motorists to bypass the Alabang viaduct.

This is welcome news and there should be relief starting Sunday (December 1).

In my personal experience, I work at an office in Calamba, Laguna and since September 25, traveling back to Alabang became more challenging due to the increased traffic congestion. Many times, the tail-end of the traffic jam going north along SLEX reached the Susana Heights area. Some times, the tail-end was at the Southwoods exit.

We will soon find out starting Monday how the promised benefits of the new Skyway ramp will improve the northbound flow of vehicles.


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