City officials allowed the resumption of the implementation or enforcement of road clearing operations in the new normal in the city pursuant to Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Memorandum Circular (Mc) 2022-085.
Under Resolution No. 002, series of 2023, the Committee on Public works, in its 3rd indorsement dated 12 December 2022, recommended that the provisions of the aforesaid circular shall be considered and adopted in the final draft of a pending ordinance that seeks to regulate the use and maintenance of sidewalks and easements and for other purposes to comply with the implementation or enforcement of the same pending the approval of the pending measure.
Earlier, the DILG issued MC No. 2022-085 which seeks to implement the road clearing operations in the new normal.
The circular was issued to all local government units, the Philippine National Police (PNP), and the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) to advise them of the resumption of the implementation of road clearing operations in the new normal and to harmonize existing guidelines on the same.
Based on the said circular, all provincial governors shall spearhead road clearing operations in all provincial roads, which may be conducted through or in coordination with concerned city and municipal governments and supervise component city and municipal governments to ensure the compliance with the directives outlined in the circular. All city and municipal governments were directed to enact or review existing road clearing ordinances, in line with the said issuance, conduct regular road clearing operations in all city and municipal roads in the enforcement or implementation of the said ordinances, maintain provincial roads cleared and turned over by the provincial governments and supervise component barangays to ensure their compliance with the prescribed rules.
Further, all barangays shall conduct regular road clearing operations in all barangay roads and implement policies for the efficient use of the same, such as the enforcement of no parking, on side parking, other similar strategies, pursuant to the ordinances duly enacted for the said purpose and maintain city or municipal roads cleared and turned over by the city or municipal governments.
The circular directed all local government units to conduct regular road clearing operations in all local roads under their jurisdiction. LGUs may also conduct road clearing operations in national roads, which shall be undertaken in coordination with the national government agency concerned with the management of the said roads such as the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), the Department of Transportation (DOTr), and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).
According to the circular, road clearing operations shall be conducted in the existing road-right-of-way, which shall include the sidewalks, road shoulders and the travel way.
However, the DILG clarified that the circular shall not be construed as an authority to conduct road-widening projects.
No encroachments or obstructions which are part of any building or permanent structure may be removed without due notice to the owner.
On the other hand, the circular shall not be used as basis for the eviction of persons or demolition of dwellings not otherwise encroaching sidewalks or roads, which shall be governed by the provisions of Republic Act (RA) 7279 or the Urban Development and Housing Act of 1992.