NOTE: THIS STORY WAS FIRST PUBLISHED IN THE BOHOL CHRONICLE’S SUNDAY PRINT EDITION.
A public hearing on the proposed 135-hectare reclamation project off Tagbilaran Bay is set for the whole day on Monday.
This will be the first formal public consultation to be conducted in a bid to generate the pros and cons of the proposed gigantic P12 billion reclamation project.
City Kagawad Butchie Zamora, chair of the committee on city planning and public lands of the Sangguniang Panlungsod, said the public hearing will be convened in order for the public to know the details of the unsolicited proposal of the Waterfront Development Corp. and thereby they could anchor their views and arguments on whether the project will jive with the development thrust of the city government without causing damages to the environment.
He said two batches of attendees would be accommodated in the morning and another in the afternoon, at JJs Seafood Village.
The representatives of the cross-section of the community were invited to attend the public hearing which will also be an opportune time for the public to know the details of the proposed reclamation.
The city lawmaker told the Chronicle the proposed reclamation will still go a long way in discussion including a series of public hearings.
He said the proposals on reclamation will even have to reach the Regional Development Council (RDC) for approval.
The proposal has to start at the barangay level which will also require the conduct of a public hearing on whether the people will endorse or reject the said project.
The proponent must have to comply with the legal, technical and financial capability documents prior to its discussion by the lawmakers, Zamora said.
CITY MAYOR’S STAND
Mayor Jane Yap said the process of evaluating the proposed reclamation project will kick off with the public consultation as she assured a transparent policy.
“I know this is a delicate development direction,” thus, the people have to be informed on the details of the project so that they can properly evaluate the pros and cons of this proposed reclamation area.
“The public should speak,” the mayor encouraged, so for the present administration to know the right balance between development and the need to protect the environment.