Quarry permit holders’ forum set next month

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD City – The Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO) will conduct a Governor’s Permit Holders Forum/Dialogue for quarry applicants in the first week of February 2020 here.

The forum aims to give permit holders the opportunity to raise their concerns and pursue possible resolutions.

A press statement from PEMO said the forum will also become a venue for the national government agencies such as the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Environmental Management Bureau (EMB), Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB), to inform permit holders on the new policy directions for 2020 in line with Negros Occ. Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson’s development agenda.

PEMO head Atty. Danilo Amisola said the province is “taking a bold step in promulgating significant changes to promote a more responsive and organized system in sand and gravel (SAG) operations for the benefit of all stakeholders.”

Gov. Eugenio Lacson signed Executive Order No. 20-01 last January 8, 2020, providing Sand and Gravel (SAG) permit applicants additional time extension not exceeding 90 days to process their permits on top of the 270-day processing period.

This is in response to numerous requests for additional days in the processing of requirements related to SAG operations applications.

Recently, the PEMO institutionalized a more efficient database management which involves the pre-evaluation of applied areas for SAG and quarry operations.

This new system requires that the applied area be inputted into the system to determine whether there is overlapping over applied areas, thus, preventing potential conflicts among SAG applicants.

The innovation resulted in the decline of complaints on overlapping in conflicted areas.