BAGUIO CITY – The city council on Monday approved on final reading an ordinance amending Ordinance No. 1 series of 1990 or the Liquor Code of the city by prescribing the hours of operations of liquor-dispensing establishments similar to the scheme adopted at the time of former mayor Braulio Yaranon in 2005.
The measure which was authored by Councilors Galo Weygan, Rocky Thomas Balisong, Perlita Rondez, Richard Cariño, Fred Bagbagen, Isabelo Cosalan Jr., Elaine Sembrano and Antonio Tabora Jr. was an offshoot of the positive effect of the implementation of Administrative Order No. 114 series of 2005 implemented by former mayor Yaranon which limited the time of operation of said establishments to certain hours as a means of curbing crime incidents in the city.
“There is a good salutary effect and accepted by the general public on the implementation of Administrative Order Nr. 114, Series of 2005. Residents have realized that there is a need for peace and serenity during the night when people are supposed to be resting for the next day’s work,” the proponents noted.
As approved, additional sections under Article 4 of Chapter II of the Liquor Code were inserted to the original ordinance to provide the hours of operations of said establishments.
The time of operation for nightclubs, cocktail lounges, beer gardens, bars with dancing, duly accredited tourism-oriented firms, bar, discopads and cabarets would be from 5:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.
Ordinary beer garden without dancing, cocktail lounge or bar without dancing, cocktail lounge, folkhouses or folden serving beer only, restaurants with liquor, bar or coffee shops serving beer or liquor and internet cafes will be allowed to operated from 3:00 p.m. to 12 noon.
The prescribed time for liquor dealers or retailers which serve liquor not to be consumed within the premises and for liquor stores which sell by the bottle and consumed within the premises would be from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
The approved penalties for owner, operator, proprietor, manager or person in charge of any establishment violating said provision would be: first offense – a fine of P2,000 with written warning; second offense – a fine of P4,000 with closure of the establishment and revocation of the business permit; and third and subsequent offenses – a fine of P6,000 with permanent closure of the establishment and imprisonment of 15 days upon discretion of the court or 15 days community service.
In the ordinance, it was noted that there were questions raised by some affected businessmen on the legality of said order but before its issuance, the city legal office issued an opinion that it is “in accordance with applicable laws and ordinances.”
“A review of Ordinance Nr. 25, s. 1987, shows that it has provisions on hours of operation of the so-called sin business or amusement centers; while Ordinance Nr. 01, s. 1990, known as the Liquor Code, is entirely silent on the hours of operation which may have been inadvertently omitted. This provision should be restored for it is the essence of any ordinance that it should be regulatory and should imposed the hours of operation as practiced in many other cities, municipalities, and barangays, as it will enhance the promotion of peace and tranquility in the community,” the proponents said. – aileen p. refuerzo