The City Council, during last Monday’s regular session, approved on first reading a proposed ordinance mandating all public utility vehicles (PUVs) plying their routes in the city to prioritize students between 6:10 to 6:55 o’clock in the morning to be ferried from their barangays to the central business district where their schools are situated.
Under the proposed ordinance, it shall be the policy of the city government to uphold and promote the general welfare and ensure the delivery of basic services and to maximize the exercise of the functions of the city for general welfare under the pertinent provisions of Republic Act (RA) 7160 or the Local Government Code of the Philippines.
The ordinance stated that all PUVs plying their routes within the city shall give priority to all students from the pre-school to senior high during school days between 6:10 to 6:55 in the morning.
Further, students who need accompaniment shall only be allowed one parent or guardian; it shall be the duty and obligation of all parents and guardians to instill to their children or ward the 45-minute student lane, otherwise, normal queuing shall ensue and it shall also be the duty and obligation of the drivers, conductors, operators or officers of all PUVs to strictly follow and implement the said student lane.
The ordinance claimed that the Land Transportation Office (LTO) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) shall be the lead implementing offices and will be tasked to conduct inspections to ensure the compliance of the PUVs to the student lane.
Moreover, the LTO and LTFRB shall deputize barangay officials as their partners in the implementation of the student lane ordinance.
On the other hand, the local legislative body through the Committee on Public Utilities, Transportation and Traffic Legislation shall serve as the justification receiving office in the implementation of the proposed measure aside from its local legislative function while for PUVs plying their route in the city, the same shall inform the public by posting the 45-minute student lane in conspicuous places in their terminals.
The ordinance stipulated that PUVs that do not comply with aforesaid provisions shall be penalized by a fine of PhP3,000, reprimand and shall be given first notice of violation for the first offense; a fine of PhP4,000, suspension of franchise and final notice of violation for the second offense and a fine of PhP5,000, suspension or revocation of franchise for the third offense.
The ordinance pointed out that transportation can affect students’ academic performance by causing delays or non-attendance which can contribute to a decline in their overall performance in school.
It added that transportation, specifically the duration of commuting, has a negative causal effect on students’ academic achievements based on a study that was conducted for the said purpose.
Ordinance No. 25, series of 1990 has made it mandatory to follow the first come, first serve policy in all instances when it is necessary and provided penalties for its violation. By Dexter A. See