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taxati on law

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ANGELES UNIVERSITY FOUNDATION
v. CITY OF ANGELES, et al.
G.R. No. 189999, 27 June 2012, FIRST DIVISION (Villarama, Jr., J.)
Building permit fees are not impositions on property but on the activity subject of
government regulation.
Angeles University Foundation (AUF) fled with the Offce of the City
Building Offcial an application for a building permit for the construction of
the Angeles University Foundation Medical Center in its main campus located in
Pampanga. The offce issued a Building Permit Fee Assessment. AUF claimed that
it was exempt from the payment of the building permit and locational clearance
fees as building permits granting the exemption were previously issued. After
obtaining a favorable opinion from Secretary Raul Gonzales, AUF appealed to the
mayor but did not receive any response. Consequently, AUF paid under protest
the total sum of Php 826,662.99. AUF was issued the corresponding Building
Permit, Wiring Permit, Electrical Permit and Sanitary Building Permit. The City
Treasurer denied AUFs formal request for a refund of it payment made under
protest.
ISSUE:
Whether or not Angeles University Foundation is exempt from the
payment of building permit and related fees imposed under the National Building
Code
HELD:
Exempted from the payment of building permit fees are: (1) public
buildings and (2) traditional indigenous family dwellings. Not being expressly
included in the enumeration of structures to which the building permit fees do
not apply, AUFs claim for exemption rests solely on its interpretation of the
term other charges imposed by the National Government in the tax exemption
clause of R.A. No. 6055.
That charges in its ordinary meaning appears to be a general term
which could cover a specifc fee does not support petitioners position that
building permit fees are among those other charges from which it was expressly
exempted. Note that the other charges mentioned in Sec. 8 of R.A. No. 6055
is qualifed by the words imposed by the Government on all property used
exclusively for the educational activities of the foundation. Building permit fees are
recent j uri sprudence
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ust law law re vi e w, vol lvi i , no. 1, november 2012
not impositions on property but on the activity subject of government regulation.
While it may be argued that the fees relate to particular properties, i.e., buildings
and structures, they are actually imposed on certain activities the owner may
conduct either to build such structures or to repair, alter, renovate or demolish
the same.