City officials earnestly requested the management of all public utility service providers in the city to adjust their respective payment due dates of their clients that coincide or fall on holidays or Sundays to allow people to settle their accounts the next working day without being penalized or slapped with surcharges that gives extra expense to clients, especially during these difficult times caused by the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
Under Resolution No. 080, series of 2022, local legislators disclosed that in frequent instances, regular or special non-working holidays, both local and national in coverage, coincide or fall on the due dates of payment of various city services which usually cause additional expenses on the part of the clients of the public utility companies apart from possible penalties or surcharges that they may incur.
Further, the body stated that this is exacerbated by the present health crisis where the capacity of people to pay their city services the soonest has been greatly affected by lost jobs and economic activities that serve as people’s major source of income.
According to the council, it is the primary role of the government to come up with proactive policies that provide adequate social services to elevate the standard of living of its people amidst the threat of emerging infectious diseases such as the COVID-19 that had existed in the country for over 2 years now.
The council claimed that the mission and vision of the local government focus on the protection and promotion of the welfare of people and that the institutionalized mission underscores creating a sustainable and enabling environment that will promote economic stability to ensure the general welfare and wellbeing of the citizenry.
As one of the highly urbanized cities in the country, Baguio City has been a hub for public utility services providers like water, internet, cable, electricity and other major service providers with established rules on the payment of bills to avoid the imposition of penalties and surcharges.
The council asserted that public utility service providers as practitioners of efficient and effective customer service are expected to meet or even surpass customer expectations and to provide convenience to their loyal clients as a show of gratitude for being their active business partners for years, thus, the need for the said companies to consider the plight of their clients for them to adjust the deadline for the payment of bills without being slapped surcharges and penalties to help people cope up with the serious negative impact of the ongoing pandemic to their established sources of income.
The council stipulated that people are still suffering from the heavy impact inflicted by the pandemic to their sources of income that is why the public utility service providers should also understand the delays for them to settle their bills without being imposed surcharges and penalties so that they will not be compelled to shell out additional money just to prevent their services from being disconnected by the providers.