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Quezon City v.

Ericta

Facts: QC passed an Ordinance regulating the
establishment, maintenance and operation of private
memorial type cemetery or burial ground within the
jurisdiction of QC. Section 9 of the Ordinance provides
that at least 6% of the total area of a memorial park
cemetery shall be set aside for charity burial of
deceased persons who are paupers & have been
residents of QC for at least 5 years prior to their death.
Seven years after the enactment of the Ordinance, the
QC Council passed a resolution requesting the City
Engineer to stop any further selling of memorial parks in
QC where the owners have failed to donate the required
6% cemetery space. The City Engineer notified
Himlayang Pilipino, Inc. that the Ordinance would be
enforced, so Himlayan filed a petition with the CFI
seeking to annul Sec 9 of the Ordinance. CFI declared
Sec 9 null and void. MR: denied

Issue: WON the ordinance is authorized under QC
Charter and a valid exercise of police power. NO.
Restatement of certain basic principles: Occupying the
forefront in the bill of rights is the provision which states
that 'no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or
property without due process of law' (Art. Ill, Section 1
subparagraph 1, Constitution). On the other hand, there
are three inherent powers of government by which the
state interferes with the property rights, namely-. (1)
police power, (2) eminent domain, (3) taxation. These
are said to exist independently of the Constitution as
necessary attributes of sovereignty.
Police power is defined by Freund as 'the power of
promoting the public welfare by restraining and
regulating the use of liberty and property' (Quoted in
Political Law by Tanada and Carreon, V-11, p. 50). It is
usually exerted in order to merely regulate the use and
enjoyment of property of the owner. If he is deprived of
his property outright, it is not taken for public use but
rather to destroy in order to promote the general welfare.
In police power, the owner does not recover from the
government for injury sustained in consequence thereof
(12 C.J. 623). It has been said that police power is the
most essential of government powers, at times the most
insistent, and always one of the least limitable of the
powers of government (Ruby vs. Provincial Board, 39
PhiL 660; Ichong vs. Hernandez, 1,7995, May 31, 1957).
This power embraces the whole system of public
regulation (U.S. vs. Linsuya Fan, 10 PhiL 104). The
Supreme Court has said that police power is so far-
reaching in scope that it has almost become impossible
to limit its sweep. As it derives its existence from the
very existence of the state itself, it does not need to be
expressed or defined in its scope. Being coextensive
with self-preservation and survival itself, it is the most
positive and active of all governmental processes, the
most essential insistent and illimitable Especially it is so
under the modern democratic framework where the
demands of society and nations have multiplied to
almost unimaginable proportions. The field and scope of
police power have become almost boundless, just as the
fields of public interest and public welfare have become
almost all embracing and have transcended human
foresight. Since the Courts cannot foresee the needs
and demands of public interest and welfare, they cannot
delimit beforehand the extent or scope of the police
power by which and through which the state seeks to
attain or achieve public interest and welfare. (Ichong vs.
Hernandez, L-7995, May 31, 1957).
The police power being the most active power of the
government and the due process clause being the
broadest station on governmental power, the conflict
between this power of government and the due process
clause of the Constitution is oftentimes inevitable.
It will be seen from the foregoing authorities that police
power is usually exercised in the form of mere regulation
or restriction in the use of liberty or property for the
promotion of the general welfare. It does not involve the
taking or confiscation of property with the exception of a
few cases where there is a necessity to confiscate
private property in order to destroy it for the purpose of
protecting the peace and order and of promoting the
general welfare as for instance, the confiscation of an
illegally possessed article, such as opium and firearms.
It seems to the court that Section 9 of Ordinance No.
6118, Series of 1964 of Quezon City is not a mere police
regulation but an outright confiscation. It deprives a
person of his private property without due process of
law, nay, even without compensation.
There is no reasonable relation between the setting
aside of at least six (6) percent of the total area of an
private cemeteries for charity burial grounds of
deceased paupers and the promotion of health, morals,
good order, safety, or the general welfare of the people.
The ordinance is actually a taking without compensation
of a certain area from a private cemetery to benefit
paupers who are charges of the municipal corporation.
Instead of building or maintaining a public cemetery for
this purpose, the city passes the burden to private
cemeteries.
The expropriation without compensation of a portion of
private cemeteries is not covered by Section 12(t) of
Republic Act 537, the Revised Charter of Quezon City
which empowers the city council to prohibit the burial of
the dead within the center of population of the city and to
provide for their burial in a proper place subject to the
provisions of general law regulating burial grounds and
cemeteries. When the LGC, Batas Pambansa Blg. 337
provides in Section 177 (q) that a Sangguniang
panlungsod may "provide for the burial of the dead in
such place and in such manner as prescribed by law or
ordinance" it simply authorizes the city to provide its own
city owned land or to buy or expropriate private
properties to construct public cemeteries. This has been
the law and practise in the past. It continues to the
present. Expropriation, however, requires payment of
just compensation. The questioned ordinance is different
from laws and regulations requiring owners of
subdivisions to set aside certain areas for streets, parks,
playgrounds, and other public facilities from the land
they sell to buyers of subdivision lots. The necessities of
public safety, health, and convenience are very clear
from said requirements which are intended to insure the
development of communities with salubrious and
wholesome environments. The beneficiaries of the
regulation, in turn, are made to pay by the subdivision
developer when individual lots are sold to home-owners.
As a matter of fact, the petitioners rely solely on the
general welfare clause or on implied powers of the
municipal corporation, not on any express provision of
law as statutory basis of their exercise of power. The
clause has always received broad and liberal
interpretation but we cannot stretch it to cover this
particular taking. Moreover, the questioned ordinance
was passed after Himlayang Pilipino, Inc. had
incorporated. received necessary licenses and permits
and commenced operating. The sequestration of six
percent of the cemetery cannot even be considered as
having been impliedly acknowledged by the private
respondent when it accepted the permits to commence
operations.

Dela Cruz v. Paras
Facts: Ordinance 84 was passed by the Municipality of
Bocaue. Petitioners are business owners who had been
previously issued licenses by the Municipal Mayor of
Bocaue
Issues:
1. WON a municipality may rely on its police power to
justify the enactment of the assailed ordinance. NO.
Police power granted to municipal corporations:
"General power of council to enact ordinances and make
regulations.- The municipal council shall enact such
ordinances and make such regulations, not repugnant to
law, as may be necessary to carry into effect and
discharge the powers and duties conferred upon it by
law and such as shall seem necessary and proper to
provide for the health and safety, promote the
prosperity, improve the morals, peace, good order,
comfort, and convenience of the municipality and the
inhabitants thereof, and for the protection of property
therein."
US v. Abendan: An ordinance enacted by virtue of police
power is valid unless it contravenes the fundamental
law, an act of the legislature, against public policy, or is
unreasonable, partial, discriminating or in derogation of
a common right.
US v. Salaveria: The general welfare clause has two
branches: 1. attaches itself to the main trunk of
municipal authority, and relates to such ordinances and
regulations as may be necessary to carry into effect and
discharge the powers and duties conferred upon the
municipal council by law.
2.It authorizes such ordinances as shall seem necessary
and proper to provide for the health and safety, promote
the prosperity, improve the morals, peace, good order,
comfort, and convenience of the municipality and the
inhabitants thereof, and for the protection of property
therein. It is a general rule that ordinances passed by
virtue of the implied power found in the general welfare
clause must be reasonable, consonant with the general
powers and purposes of the corporation, and not
inconsistent with the laws or policy of the State.
If night clubs were merely then regulated and not
prohibited, certainly the assailed ordinance would pass
the test of validity. **reasonableness, consonance with
the general powers and purposes of municipal
corporations, consistency with the laws or policy of the
State.
It is clear that in the guise of a police regulation, there
was in this instance a clear invasion of personal or
property rights, personal in the case of those individuals
desirous of patronizing those night clubs and property in
terms of the investments made and salaries to be
earned by those therein employed.
2. WON a municipality has no authority to prohibit a lawful
business, occupation or calling. NO.
RA 938: the municipal or city board or council of each
chartered city shall have the power to regulate by
ordinance the establishment, maintenance and
operation of night clubs, cabarets, dancing schools,
pavilions, cockpits, bars, saloons, bowling alleys, billiard
pools, and other similar places of amusement within its
territorial jurisdiction: . . . Then on May 21, 1954, the first
section was amended to include not merely "the power
to regulate, but likewise "prohibit . . ." The title, however,
remained the same and the exact wording was followed.
The power granted remains that of regulation, not
prohibition. There is thus support for the view advanced
by petitioners that to construe RA 938 as allowing the
prohibition of the operation of night clubs would give rise
to a constitutional question.
There is a wide gap between the exercise of a
regulatory power "to provide for the health and safety,
promote the prosperity, improve the morals," in the
language of the Administrative Code, such competence
extending to all "the great public needs," and to interdict
any calling, occupation, or enterprise.
It is clear that municipal corporations cannot prohibit the
operation of might clubs. They may be regulated, but not
prevented from carrying on their business.


Balacuit v CFI G.R. No. L-38429 June 30, 1988
J. Gancayo

Facts:
Petitioners, theater owners, assailed the constitutionality
of Ordinance No. 640 passed by theMunicipal Board of
the City of Butuan on April 21, 1969. This called for a
reduction to of theticket price given to minors from 7-
12 years old. There was a fine from 200-600 pesos or a
2-6 month imprisonment
The complaint was issued in the trial court. A TRO was
then issued to prevent the law from being enforced.
The respondent court entered its decision declaring the
law valid.
Petitioners attack the validity and constitutionality of
Ordinance No. 640 on the grounds that it is ultra vires
and an invalid exercise of police power. Petitioners
contend that Ordinance No. 640 is not within the power
of' the Municipal Board to enact as provided for in
Section 15(n) of Republic Act No. 523 where it states
that the Muncipal board can only fix license fees for
theaters and notadmission rates.
The respondent attempts to justify the enactment of the
ordinance by invoking the general welfare clause
embodied in Section 15 (nn) of the cited law.

Issue:
Does this power to regulate include the authority to
interfere in the fixing of prices of admission to these
places of exhibition and amusement whether under its
general grant of power or under the general welfare
clause as invoked by the City?

Held: The ordinance is under neither and thus
unconstitutional. Petition granted.

Ratio:
1. Kwong Sing v. City of Manila- the word "regulate" was
interpreted to include the power to control, to govern and
to restrain, it would seem that under its power to
regulate places of exhibitions and amusement,
the Municipal Board of the City of Butuan could make
proper policeregulations as to the mode in which the
business shall be exercised.
In this jurisdiction, it is already settled that the operation
of theaters, cinematographs and other places of public
exhibition are subject to regulation by
the municipal council in the exercise of
delegated police power by the local government.
People v. Chan- an ordinance of the City of Manila
prohibiting first run cinematographs from selling tickets
beyond their seating capacity was upheld as
constitutional for being a valid exercise of police power.
The City of Butuan, apparently realizing that it has no
authority to enact the ordinance in question under its
power to regulate embodied in Section 15(n), now
invokes the police power as delegated to it under the
general welfare clause to justify the enactment of said
ordinance
To invoke the exercise of police power, not only must it
appear that the interest of the public generally requires
an interference with private rights, but the means
adopted must be reasonably necessary for the
accomplishment of the purpose and not unduly
oppressive upon individuals.
The legislature may not, under the guise of protecting
the public interest, arbitrarily interfere with private
business, or impose unusual and unnecessary
restrictions upon lawful occupations. In other words, the
determination as to what is a proper exercise of its
police power is not final or conclusive, but is subject to
the supervision of the courts.
Petitioners maintain that Ordinance No. 640 violates
the due process clause of the Constitution for being
oppressive, unfair, unjust, confiscatory, and an undue
restraint of trade, and violative of the right of persons to
enter into contracts, considering that the theater owners
are bound under a contract with the film owners for
just admission prices for general admission, balcony and
lodge.
Homeowners Association- the exercise of police power
is necessarily subject to a qualification, limitation or
restriction demanded by the regard, the respect and the
obedience due to the prescriptions of the fundamental
law
The court agreed with petitioners that the ordinance is
not justified by any necessity for the public interest.
The police power legislation must be firmly grounded on
public interest and welfare, and a reasonable relation
must exist between purposes and means.
The evident purpose of the ordinance is to help ease the
burden of cost on the part of parents who have to shell
out the same amount of money for the admission of their
children, as they would for themselves. A reduction in
the price of admission would mean corresponding
savings for the parents; however, the petitioners are the
ones made to bear the cost of these savings. The
ordinance does not only make the petitioners suffer the
loss of earnings but it likewise penalizes them for failure
to comply with it. Furthermore, as petitioners point out,
there will be difficulty in its implementation because as
already experienced by petitioners since the effectivity of
the ordinance, children over 12 years of age tried to
pass off their age as below 12 years in order to avail of
the benefit of the ordinance. The ordinance does not
provide a safeguard against this undesirable practice
and as such, the respondent City of Butuan now
suggests that birth certificates be exhibited by movie
house patrons to prove the age of children. This is,
however, not at all practicable. We can see that the
ordinance is clearly unreasonable if not unduly
oppressive upon the business of petitioners. Moreover,
there is no discernible relation between the ordinance
and the promotion of public health, safety, morals and
the general welfare.
Respondent further alleges that by charging the full
price, the children are being exploited by movie house
operators. We fail to see how the children are exploited
if they pay the full price ofadmission. They are treated
with the same quality of entertainment as the adults.
Moreover, as a logical consequence of the ordinance,
movie house and theater operators will be discouraged
from exhibiting wholesome movies for general
patronage, much less children's pictures if only to avoid
compliance with the ordinance and still earn profits for
themselves.
A theater ticket has been described to be either a mere
license, revocable at the will of the proprietor of the
theater or it may be evidence of a contract whereby, for
a valuable consideration, the purchaser has acquired
the right to enter the theater and observe the
performance on condition that he behaves properly.
Such ticket, therefore, represents a right, Positive or
conditional, as the case may be, according to the terms
of the original contract of sale. This right is clearly a right
of property. The ticket which represents that right is also,
necessarily, a species of property. As such, the owner
thereof, in the absence of any condition to the contrary
in the contract by which he obtained it, has the clear
right to dispose of it, to sell it to whom he pleases
and at such price as he can obtain.
In no sense could theaters be considered public utilities.
The State has not found it appropriate as a national
policy to interfere with the admission prices to these
performances. This does not mean however, that
theaters and exhibitions are not affected with public
interest even to a certain degree. Motion pictures have
been considered important both as a medium for the
communication of Ideas and expression of the artistic
impulse. Their effects on the perceptions by our people
of issues and public officials or public figures as well as
the prevailing cultural traits are considerable.
While it is true that a business may be regulated, it is
equally true that such regulation must be within the
bounds of reason, that is, the regulatory ordinance must
be reasonable, and its provisions cannot be oppressive
amounting to an arbitrary interference with the business
or calling subject of regulation. A lawful business or
calling may not, under the guise of regulation, be
unreasonably interfered with even by the exercise
of police power.
A police measure for the regulation of the conduct,
control and operation of a business should not encroach
upon the legitimate and lawful exercise by the citizens of
their property rights. 34 The right of the owner to fix a
price at which his property shall be sold or used is an
inherent attribute of the property itself and, as such,
within the protection of the due process clause.
Although the presumption is always in favor of the
validity or reasonableness of the ordinance, such
presumption must nevertheless be set aside when the
invalidity or unreasonableness appears on the face of
the ordinance itself or is established by proper evidence

Binay v. Domingo

Facts: Resolution 60 confirming the ongoing burial
assistance program initiated by the mayors office.
Under this program, bereaved families whose gross
family income does not exceed 2k/month will receive a
500php cash relief to be taken out of unappropriated
available funds existing in the municipal treasury. The
Metro Manila Commission approved Resolution 60.
Thereafter, the municipal secretary certified a
disbursement of P400,000 for the implementation of the
Burial Assistance Program. R 60 was referred to the
Commission on Audit for its expected allowance in audit.
Based on its preliminary findings, COA disapproved R
60 and disallowed in audit the disbursement of funds for
the implementation thereof. The program was stayed by
COA Decision No. 1159.

Issues:
1. WON R 60 is a valid exercise of police power under the
general welfare clause. YES.
Police power is inherent in the state but not in municipal
corporations. Before a municipal corporation may
exercise such power, there must be a valid delegation of
such power by the legislature which is the repository of
the inherent powers of the State. A valid delegation of
police power may arise from express delegation, or be
inferred from the mere fact of the creation of the
municipal corporation; and as a general rule, municipal
corporations may exercise police powers within the fair
intent and purpose of their creation which are
reasonably proper to give effect to the powers expressly
granted, and statutes conferring powers on public
corporations have been construed as empowering them
to do the things essential to the enjoyment of life and
desirable for the safety of the people.
Municipal governments exercise this power under the
general welfare clause: authority to "enact such
ordinances and issue such regulations as may be
necessary to carry out and discharge the responsibilities
conferred upon it by law, and such as shall be
necessary and proper to provide for the health, safety,
comfort and convenience, maintain peace and order,
improve public morals, promote the prosperity and
general welfare of the municipality and the inhabitants
thereof, and insure the protection of property therein."
Sec 7 of BP 337: every LGU shall exercise the powers
expressly granted, those necessarily implied therefrom,
as well as powers necessary and proper for governance
such as to promote health and safety, enhance
prosperity, improve morals, and maintain peace and
order in the LGU, and preserve the comfort and
convenience of the inhabitants therein."
Police power: power to prescribe regulations to promote
the health, morals, peace, education, good order or
safety and general welfare of the people. It is the most
essential, insistent, and illimitable of powers; greatest
and most powerful attribute of the government; elastic
and must be responsive to various social conditions.
COA: there is no perceptible connection or relation
between the objective sought to be attained under R 60
and the alleged public safety, general welfare. etc. of the
inhabitants of Makati
Apparently, COA tries to re-define the scope of police
power by circumscribing its exercise to "public safety,
general welfare, etc. of the inhabitants of Makati ."
Police power of a municipal corporation: broad, and has
been said to be commensurate with, but not to exceed,
the duty to provide for the real needs of the people in
their health, safety, comfort, and convenience as
consistently as may be with private rights. It extends to
all the great public needs, and, in a broad sense
includes all legislation and almost every function of the
municipal government. It covers a wide scope of
subjects, and, while it is especially occupied with
whatever affects the peace, security, health, morals, and
general welfare of the community, it is not limited
thereto, but is broadened to deal with conditions which
exists so as to bring out of them the greatest welfare of
the people by promoting public convenience or general
prosperity, and to everything worthwhile for the
preservation of comfort of the inhabitants of the
corporation. Thus, it is deemed inadvisable to attempt to
frame any definition which shall absolutely indicate the
limits of police power.
COA is not attuned to the changing of the times. Public
purpose is not unconstitutional merely because it
incidentally benefits a limited number of persons. OSG:
"the drift is towards social welfare legislation geared
towards state policies to provide adequate social
services (Section 9, Art. II, Constitution), the promotion
of the general welfare (Section 5, Ibid) social justice
(Section 10, Ibid) as well as human dignity and respect
for human rights. (Section 11, Ibid."
The care for the poor is generally recognized as a public
duty. The support for the poor has long been an
accepted exercise of police power in the promotion of
the common good.
There is no violation of the equal protection clause in
classifying paupers as subject of legislation. Paupers
may be reasonably classified. Different groups may
receive varying treatment. Precious to the hearts of our
legislators, down to our local councilors, is the welfare of
the paupers. Thus, statutes have been passed giving
rights and benefits to the disabled, emancipating the
tenant-farmer from the bondage of the soil, housing the
urban poor, etc.
The resolution is a paragon of the continuing program of
our government towards social justice. The Burial
Assistance Program is a relief of pauperism, though not
complete. The loss of a member of a family is a painful
experience, and it is more painful for the poor to be
financially burdened by such death. Resolution No. 60
vivifies the very words of the late President Ramon
Magsaysay 'those who have less in life, should have
more in law."

Municipality of San Fernando, La Union v. Firme

Facts: At about 7 o'clock in the morning of December
16, 1965, a collision occurred involving a passenger
jeepney driven by Bernardo Balagot and owned by the
Estate of Macario Nieveras, a gravel and sand truck
driven by Jose Manandeg and owned by Tanquilino
Velasquez and a dump truck of the Municipality of San
Fernando, La Union and driven by Alfredo Bislig. Due to
the impact, several passengers of the jeepney including
Laureano Bania Sr. died as a result of the injuries they
sustained and four (4) others suffered varying degrees
of physical injuries. On December 11, 1966, the private
respondents instituted a complaint for damages against
the Estate of Macario Nieveras and Bernardo Balagot,
owner and driver, respectively, of the passenger
jeepney, which was docketed Civil Case No. 2183 in the
Court of First Instance of La Union, Branch I, San
Fernando, La Union. However, the aforesaid defendants
filed a Third Party Complaint against the petitioner and
the driver of a dump truck of petitioner. Thereafter, the
case was subsequently transferred to Branch IV,
presided over by respondent judge and was
subsequently docketed as Civil Case No. 107-Bg. By
virtue of a court order dated May 7, 1975, the private
respondents amended the complaint wherein the
petitioner and its regular employee, Alfredo Bislig were
impleaded for the first time as defendants. Petitioner
filed its answer and raised affirmative defenses such as
lack of cause of action, non-suability of the State,
prescription of cause of action and the negligence of the
owner and driver of the passenger jeepney as the
proximate cause of the collision.
In the course of the proceedings, the respondent judge
issued the following questioned orders: (1) Order dated
November 4, 1975 dismissing the cross-claim against
Bernardo Balagot; (2) Order dated July 13, 1976
admitting the Amended Answer of the Municipality of
San Fernando, La Union and Bislig and setting the
hearing on the affirmative defenses only with respect to
the supposed lack of jurisdiction; (3) Order dated
August 23, 1976 deferring the resolution of the grounds
for the Motion to Dismiss until the trial; (4) Order dated
February 23, 1977 denying the motion for
reconsideration of the order of July 13, 1976 filed by the
Municipality and Bislig for having been filed out of time;
(5) Order dated March 16, 1977 reiterating the denial of
the motion for reconsideration of the order of July 13,
1976; (6) Order dated July 26, 1979 declaring the case
deemed submitted for decision it appearing that parties
have not yet submitted their respective memoranda
despite the court's direction; and (7) Order dated
September 7, 1979 denying the petitioner's motion for
reconsideration and or order to recall prosecution
witnesses for cross examination. TC: defendants
Municipality of San Fernando, La Union and Alfredo
Bislig are ordered to pay jointly and severally, plaintiffs
Juana Rimando-Bania, Mrs. Priscilla B. Surell,
Laureano Bania, Jr., Sor Marietta Bania, Mrs. Fe B.
Soriano, Montano Bania, Orja Bania and Lydia B.
Bania the sums of P1,500.00 as funeral expenses and
P24,744.24 as the lost expected earnings of the late
Laureano Bania Sr., P30,000.00 as moral damages,
and P2,500.00 as attorney's fees. Costs against said
defendants.The Complaint is dismissed as to
defendants Estate of Macario Nieveras and Bernardo
Balagot. MR, MNT. MR denied. Finally, the respondent
judge issued an order dated December 3, 1979
providing that if defendants municipality and Bislig
further wish to pursue the matter disposed of in the
order of July 26, 1979, such should be elevated to a
higher court in accordance with the Rules of Court.
Hence, this petition.
Issue: 1. WON the respondent court committed grave
abuse of discretion when it deferred and failed to resolve
the defense of non-suability of the State amounting to
lack of jurisdiction in a motion to dismiss.
In the case at bar, the respondent judge deferred the
resolution of the defense of non-suability of the State
amounting to lack of jurisdiction until trial. However, said
respondent judge failed to resolve such defense,
proceeded with the trial and thereafter rendered a
decision against the municipality and its driver. The
respondent judge did not commit grave abuse of
discretion when in the exercise of its judgment it
arbitrarily failed to resolve the vital issue of non-suability
of the State in the guise of the municipality. However,
said judge acted in excess of his jurisdiction when in his
decision dated October 10, 1979 he held the
municipality liable for the quasi-delict committed by its
regular employee.
The doctrine of non-suability of the State is expressly
provided for in Article XVI, Section 3 of the Constitution,
to wit: "the State may not be sued without its consent."
Stated in simple parlance, the general rule is that the
State may not be sued except when it gives consent to
be sued. Consent takes the form of express or implied
consent. Express consent may be embodied in a
general law or a special law. The standing consent of
the State to be sued in case of money claims involving
liability arising from contracts is found in Act No. 3083. A
special law may be passed to enable a person to sue
the government for an alleged quasi-delict, as in Merritt
v. Government of the Philippine Islands. Consent is
implied when the government enters into business
contracts, thereby descending to the level of the other
contracting party, and also when the State files a
complaint, thus opening itself to a counterclaim.
Municipal corporations, for example, like provinces and
cities, are agencies of the State when they are engaged
in governmental functions and therefore should enjoy
the sovereign immunity from suit. Nevertheless, they are
subject to suit even in the performance of such functions
because their charter provided that they can sue and be
sued.
A distinction should first be made between suability and
liability. "Suability depends on the consent of the state to
be sued, liability on the applicable law and the
established facts. The circumstance that a state is
suable does not necessarily mean that it is liable; on the
other hand, it can never be held liable if it does not first
consent to be sued. Liability is not conceded by the
mere fact that the state has allowed itself to be sued.
When the state does waive its sovereign immunity, it is
only giving the plaintiff the chance to prove, if it can, that
the defendant is liable."
2. WON the municipality is liable for the torts committed by
its employee, the test of liability of the municipality
depends on whether or not the driver, acting in behalf of
the municipality, is performing governmental or
proprietary functions.
Torio v. Fontanilla: the distinction of powers becomes
important for purposes of determining the liability of the
municipality for the acts of its agents which result in an
injury to third persons.
City of Kokomo v. Loy: "Municipal corporations exist in a
dual capacity, and their functions are twofold. In one
they exercise the right springing from sovereignty, and
while in the performance of the duties pertaining thereto,
their acts are political and governmental. Their officers
and agents in such capacity, though elected or
appointed by them, are nevertheless public functionaries
performing a public service, and as such they are
officers, agents, and servants of the state. In the other
capacity the municipalities exercise a private, proprietary
or corporate right, arising from their existence as legal
persons and not as public agencies. Their officers and
agents in the performance of such functions act in behalf
of the municipalities in their corporate or individual
capacity, and not for the state or sovereign power.
It has already been remarked that municipal
corporations are suable because their charters grant
them the competence to sue and be sued. Nevertheless,
they are generally not liable for torts committed by them
in the discharge of governmental functions and can be
held answerable only if it can be shown that they were
acting in a proprietary capacity. In permitting such
entities to be sued, the State merely gives the claimant
the right to show that the defendant was not acting in its
governmental capacity when the injury was committed
or that the case comes under the exceptions recognized
by law. Failing this, the claimant cannot recover.
In the case at bar, the driver of the dump truck of the
municipality insists that "he was on his way to the
Naguilian river to get a load of sand and gravel for the
repair of San Fernando's municipal streets." In the
absence of any evidence to the contrary, the regularity
of the performance of official duty is presumed pursuant
to Section 3(m) of Rule 131 of the Revised Rules of
Court. Hence, We rule that the driver of the dump truck
was performing duties or tasks pertaining to his office.
Palafox, et. al. v. Province of Ilocos Norte, the District
Engineer, and the Provincial Treasurer: that "the
construction or maintenance of roads in which the truck
and the driver worked at the time of the accident are
admittedly governmental activities." After a careful
examination of existing laws and jurisprudence, We
arrive at the conclusion that the municipality cannot be
held liable for the torts committed by its regular
employee, who was then engaged in the discharge of
governmental functions. Hence, the death of the
passenger tragic and deplorable though it may be
imposed on the municipality no duty to pay monetary
compensation.

Solicitor General v. Metro Manila Authority

Facts: Malapira complained to the Court that when he
was stopped for an alleged traffic violation, his driver's
license was confiscated in Quezon City. The Caloocan-
Manila Drivers and Operators Association then sent a
letter to the Court asking who should enforce the
decision in the above-mentioned case, whether they
could seek damages for confiscation of their driver's
licenses, and where they should file their complaints.
Other letters were received by the Court complaining
against the confiscation of driver's licenses. Still another
complaint was received by the Court for removal of a
front license plate and drivers license. The traffic
enforcers invoked Ordinance No. 7, Series of 1988, of
Mandaluyong, authorizing the confiscation of driver's
licenses and the removal of license plates of motor
vehicles for traffic violations, and a memorandum dated
February 27, 1991, from the District Commander of the
Western Traffic District of the Philippine National Police,
authorizing such sanction under certain conditions.
Director General Nazareno of the Philippine National
Police assured the Court in his own Comment that his
office had never authorized the removal of the license
plates of illegally parked vehicles and that he had in fact
directed full compliance with the above-mentioned
decision in a memorandum, copy of which he attached,
entitled Removal of Motor Vehicle License Plates and
dated February 28, 1991. Tano-an, on the other hand,
argued that the Gonong decision prohibited only the
removal of license plates and not the confiscation of
driver's licenses. On May 24, 1990, the Metropolitan
Manila Authority issued Ordinance No. 11, Series of
1991, authorizing itself "to detach the license plate/tow
and impound attended/ unattended/ abandoned motor
vehicles illegally parked or obstructing the flow of traffic
in Metro Manila."
On July 2, 1991, the Court issued a resolution on Ord
11: sec 2 which allows the
Metropolitan Manila Authority, thru the Traffic Operation
Center, is authorized to detach the license plate/tow and
impound attended/unattended/abandoned motor
vehicles illegally parked or obstructing the flow of traffic
in Metro Manila appears to be in conflict with the
decision of the Court in the case at bar, where it was
held that the license plates of motor vehicles may not be
detached except only under the conditions prescribed in
LOI 43. Additionally, the Court has received several
complaints against the confiscation by police authorities
of driver's licenses for alleged traffic violations, which
sanction is, according to the said decision, not among
those that may be imposed under PD 1605. Comments
required.
MMA: defended the said ordinance on the ground that it
was adopted pursuant to the powers conferred upon it
by EO 392. It particularly cited Section 2 thereof vesting
in the Council (its governing body) the responsibility
among others of:
1. Formulation of policies on the delivery of basic
services requiring coordination or consolidation for the
Authority; and 2. Promulgation of resolutions and other
issuances of metropolitan wide application, approval of a
code of basic services requiring coordination, and
exercise of its rule-making powers. The Authority argued
that there was no conflict between the decision and the
ordinance because the latter was meant to supplement
and not supplant the latter. It stressed that the decision
itself said that the confiscation of license plates was
invalid in the absence of a valid law or ordinance, which
was why Ordinance No. 11 was enacted. The Authority
also pointed out that the ordinance could not be
attacked collaterally but only in a direct action
challenging its validity.
SolGen: the ordinance was null and void because it
represented an invalid exercise of a delegated
legislative power. The flaw in the measure was that it
violated existing law, specifically PD 1605, which does
not permit, and so impliedly prohibits, the removal of
license plates and the confiscation of driver's licenses
for traffic violations in Metropolitan Manila. He made no
mention, however, of the alleged impropriety of
examining the said ordinance in the absence of a formal
challenge to its validity.
On October 24, 1991, the Office of the Solicitor General
submitted a motion for the early resolution of the
questioned sanctions, to remove once and for all the
uncertainty of their validity. A similar motion was filed by
the Metropolitan Manila Authority, which reiterated its
contention that the incidents in question should be
dismissed because there was no actual case or
controversy before the Court.
The Metropolitan Manila Authority is correct in invoking
the doctrine that the validity of a law or act can be
challenged only in a direct action and not collaterally.
That is indeed the settled principle. However, that rule is
not inflexible and may be relaxed by the Court under
exceptional circumstances, such as those in the present
controversy. The Solicitor General notes that the
practices complained of have created a great deal of
confusion among motorists about the state of the law on
the questioned sanctions. More importantly, he
maintains that these sanctions are illegal, being violative
of law and the Gonong decision, and should therefore
be stopped. We also note the disturbing report that one
policeman who confiscated a driver's license dismissed
the Gonong decision as "wrong" and said the police
would not stop their "habit" unless they received orders
"from the top." Regrettably, not one of the complainants
has filed a formal challenge to the ordinances, including
Monsanto and Trieste, who are lawyers and could have
been more assertive of their
rights.

Issue: WON MMA Ord 11 and Mandaluyong Ord 7 are
valid. NO.
MMA sustains Ordinance No. 11, Series of 1991, under
the specific authority conferred upon it by EO 392, while
Ordinance No. 7, Series of 1988, is justified on the basis
of the General Welfare Clause embodied in the LGC. It
is not disputed that both measures were enacted to
promote the comfort and convenience of the public and
to alleviate the worsening traffic problems in
Metropolitan Manila due in large part to violations of
traffic rules.
valid delegation of legislative power: 1) the
completeness of the statute making the delegation; and
2) the presence of a sufficient standard.
Under the first requirement, the statute must leave the
legislature complete in all its terms and provisions such
that all the delegate will have to do when the statute
reaches it is to implement it. What only can be delegated
is not the discretion to determine what the law shall be
but the discretion to determine how the law shall be
enforced. This has been done in the case at bar.
As a second requirement, the enforcement may be
effected only in accordance with a sufficient standard,
the function of which is to map out the boundaries of the
delegate's authority and thus "prevent the delegation
from running riot." This requirement has also been met.
It is settled that the "convenience and welfare" of the
public, particularly the motorists and passengers in the
case at bar, is an acceptable sufficient standard to
delimit the delegate's authority.
But the problem before us is not the validity of the
delegation of legislative power. The question we must
resolve is the validity of the exercise of such delegated
power. The measures in question are enactments of
local governments acting only as agents of the national
legislature. Necessarily, the acts of these agents must
reflect and conform to the will of their principal. To test
the validity of such acts in the specific case now before
us, we apply the particular requisites of a valid
ordinance as laid down by the accepted principles
governing municipal corporations.
Elliot: a municipal ordinance, to be valid: 1) must not
contravene the Constitution or any statute; 2) must not
be unfair or oppressive; 3) must not be partial or
discriminatory; 4) must not prohibit but may regulate
trade; 5) must not be unreasonable; and 6) must be
general and consistent with public policy.
Gonong decision: measures under consideration do not
pass the first criterion because they do not conform to
existing law. The pertinent law is PD 1605 which does
not allow either the removal of license plates or the
confiscation of driver's licenses for traffic violations
committed in Metropolitan Manila. There is nothing in
the following provisions of the decree authorizing the
Metropolitan Manila Commission (and now the
Metropolitan Manila Authority) to impose such sanctions.
In fact, the provisions prohibit the imposition of such
sanctions in Metropolitan Manila. The Commission was
allowed to "impose fines and otherwise discipline" traffic
violators only "in such amounts and under such
penalties as are herein prescribed," that is, by the
decree itself. Nowhere is the removal of license plates
directly imposed by the decree or at least allowed by it
to be imposed by the Commission. Notably, Section 5
thereof expressly provides that "in case of traffic
violations, the driver's license shall not be confiscated."
These restrictions are applicable to the Metropolitan
Manila Authority and all other local political subdivisions
comprising Metropolitan Manila, including the
Municipality of Mandaluyong.
The requirement that the municipal enactment must not
violate existing law explains itself. Local political
subdivisions are able to legislate only by virtue of a valid
delegation of legislative power from the national
legislature (except only that the power to create their
own sources of revenue and to levy taxes is conferred
by the Constitution itself). They are mere agents vested
with what is called the power of subordinate legislation.
As delegates of the Congress, the local government unit
cannot contravene but must obey at all times the will of
their principal. In the case before us, the enactments in
question, which are merely local in origin, cannot prevail
against the decree, which has the force and effect of a
statute. The self-serving language of Section 2 of the
challenged ordinance is worth noting. Curiously, it is the
measure itself, which was enacted by the Metropolitan
Manila Authority, that authorizes the Metropolitan Manila
Authority to impose the questioned sanction.
Villacorta vs, Bernardo: the Court nullified an ordinance
enacted by the Municipal Board of Dagupan City for
being violative of the Land Registration Act. The powers
of the board in enacting such a laudable ordinance
cannot be held valid when it shall impede the exercise of
rights granted in a general law and/or make a general
law subordinated to a local ordinance.
To sustain the ordinance would be to open the
floodgates to other ordinances amending and so
violating national laws in the guise of implementing
them. Thus, ordinances could be passed imposing
additional requirements for the issuance of marriage
licenses, to prevent bigamy; the registration of vehicles,
to minimize carnapping; the execution of contracts, to
forestall fraud; the validation of parts, to deter imposture;
the exercise of freedom of speech, to reduce disorder;
and so on. The list is endless, but the means, even if the
end be valid, would be ultra vires.
The measures in question do not merely add to the
requirement of PD 1605 but, worse, impose sanctions
the decree does not allow and in fact actually prohibits.
In so doing, the ordinances disregard and violate and in
effect partially repeal the law.
We here emphasize the ruling in the Gonong case that
PD 1605 applies only to the Metropolitan Manila area. It
is an exception to the general authority conferred by
R.A. No. 413 on the Commissioner of Land
Transportation to punish violations of traffic rules
elsewhere in the country with the sanction therein
prescribed, including those here questioned.
Magtajas v. Pryce Properties Corp & PAGCOR

Facts: PAGCOR leased a portion of a building belonging
to Pryce Properties, renovated and equipped the same,
and prepared to inaugurate its casino there during the
Christmas season. The Sangguniang Panlungsod of
Cagayan de Oro City enacted Ordinance No. 3353
which prohibits the issuance of business permits and
cancels existing business permits to any establishment
for the using and allowing to be used its premises or
portions thereof for the operation of casinos. Pryce
assailed the ordinances before the Court of Appeals,
where it was joined by PAGCOR as intervenor and
supplemental petitioner. CA declared the ordinances
invalid and issued the writ prayed for to prohibit their
enforcement. MR denied.

Issue: WON Ordinance 3353 is unconstitutional.
Basco v. Philippine Amusements and Gaming
Corporation: sustained the constitutionality of the decree
and even cited the benefits of the entity to the national
economy as the third highest revenue-earner in the
government, next only to the BIR and the Bureau of
Customs.
Cagayan de Oro City, like other local political
subdivisions, is empowered to enact ordinances for the
purposes indicated in the LGC. It is expressly vested
with the police power under what is known as the
General Welfare Clause. In addition, Section 458 of the
said Code specifically declares that the Sangguniang
Panlungsod, as the legislative body of the city, shall
enact ordinances, approve resolutions and appropriate
funds for the general welfare of the city and its
inhabitants. This section also authorizes the LGUs to
regulate properties and businesses within their territorial
limits in the interest of the general welfare.
P: the Sangguniang Panlungsod may prohibit the
operation of casinos because they involve games of
chance, which are detrimental to the people. Gambling
is not allowed by general law and even by the
Constitution itself. The legislative power conferred upon
local government units may be exercised over all kinds
of gambling and not only over "illegal gambling" as the
respondents erroneously argue. Even if the operation of
casinos may have been permitted under P.D. 1869, the
government of Cagayan de Oro City has the authority to
prohibit them within its territory pursuant to the authority
entrusted to it by the LGC. Such interpretation is
consonant with the policy of local autonomy as
mandated in Article II, Section 25, and Article X of the
Constitution, as well as various other provisions therein
seeking to strengthen the character of the nation. In
giving the LGUs the power to prevent or suppress
gambling and other social problems, the LGC has
recognized the competence of such communities to
determine and adopt the measures best expected to
promote the general welfare of their inhabitants in line
with the policies of the State.
Valid Ordinance: 1) It must not contravene the
constitution or any statute. 2) It must not be unfair or
oppressive. 3) It must not be partial or discriminatory. 4)
It must not prohibit but may regulate trade. 5) It must be
general and consistent with public policy. 6) It must not
be unreasonable.
Under Sec. 458 of the LGC, LGUs are authorized to
prevent or suppress, among others, "gambling and other
prohibited games of chance." Obviously, this provision
excludes games of chance which are not prohibited but
are in fact permitted by law. The petitioners are less
than accurate in claiming that the Code could have
excluded such games of chance but did not. In fact it
does. The language of the section is clear and
unmistakable. Under the rule of noscitur a sociis, a word
or phrase should be interpreted in relation to, or given
the same meaning of, words with which it is associated.
Accordingly, we conclude that since the word "gambling"
is associated with "and other prohibited games of
chance," the word should be read as referring to only
illegal gambling which, like the other prohibited games of
chance, must be prevented or suppressed.
The apparent flaw in the ordinances in question is that
they contravene P.D. 1869 and the public policy
embodied therein insofar as they prevent PAGCOR from
exercising the power conferred on it to operate a casino
in Cagayan de Oro City. The petitioners have an
ingenious answer to this misgiving. They deny that it is
the ordinances that have changed P.D. 1869 for an
ordinance admittedly cannot prevail against a statute.
Their theory is that the change has been made by the
LGC itself, which was also enacted by the national
lawmaking authority. In their view, the decree has been,
not really repealed by the Code, but merely "modified
pro tanto" in the sense that PAGCOR cannot now
operate a casino over the objection of the local
government unit concerned. This modification of P.D.
1869 by the LGC is permissible because one law can
change or repeal another law.
It seems to us that the petitioners are playing with
words. While insisting that the decree has only been
"modified pro tanto," they are actually arguing that it is
already dead, repealed and useless for all intents and
purposes because the Code has shorn PAGCOR of all
power to centralize and regulate casinos. Strictly
speaking, its operations may now be not only prohibited
by the local government unit; in fact, the prohibition is
not only discretionary but mandated by Section 458 of
the Code if the word "shall" as used therein is to be
given its accepted meaning. Local government units
have now no choice but to prevent and suppress
gambling, which in the petitioners' view includes both
legal and illegal gambling. Under this construction,
PAGCOR will have no more games of chance to
regulate or centralize as they must all be prohibited by
the local government units pursuant to the mandatory
duty imposed upon them by the Code. In this situation,
PAGCOR cannot continue to exist except only as a
toothless tiger or a white elephant and will no longer be
able to exercise its powers as a prime source of
government revenue through the operation of casinos.
It is noteworthy that the petitioners have cited only Par.
(f) of the repealing clause, conveniently discarding the
rest of the provision which painstakingly mentions the
specific laws or the parts thereof which are repealed (or
modified) by the Code. Significantly, P.D. 1869 is not
one of them. A reading of the entire repealing clause,
which is reproduced below, will disclose the omission:
Sec. 534. Repealing Clause. (a) Batas Pambansa
Blg. 337, otherwise known as the "LGC," Executive
Order No. 112 (1987), and Executive Order No. 319
(1988) are hereby repealed. (b) Presidential Decree
Nos. 684, 1191, 1508 and such other decrees, orders,
instructions, memoranda and issuances related to or
concerning the barangay are hereby repealed. (c) The
provisions of Sections 2, 3, and 4 of Republic Act No.
1939 regarding hospital fund; Section 3, a (3) and b (2)
of Republic Act. No. 5447 regarding the Special
Education Fund; Presidential Decree No. 144 as
amended by Presidential Decree Nos. 559 and 1741;
Presidential Decree No. 231 as amended; Presidential
Decree No. 436 as amended by Presidential Decree No.
558; and Presidential Decree Nos. 381, 436, 464, 477,
526, 632, 752, and 1136 are hereby repealed and
rendered of no force and effect. (d) Presidential Decree
No. 1594 is hereby repealed insofar as it governs
locally-funded projects. (e) The following provisions are
hereby repealed or amended insofar as they are
inconsistent with the provisions of this Code: Sections 2,
16, and 29 of Presidential Decree No. 704; Sections 12
of Presidential Decree No. 87, as amended; Sections
52, 53, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, and 74 of
Presidential Decree No. 463, as amended; and Section
16 of Presidential Decree No. 972, as amended, and (f)
All general and special laws, acts, city charters, decrees,
executive orders, proclamations and administrative
regulations, or part or parts thereof which are
inconsistent with any of the provisions of this Code are
hereby repealed or modified accordingly.
Furthermore, it is a familiar rule that implied repeals are
not lightly presumed in the absence of a clear and
unmistakable showing of such intention. In Lichauco &
Co. v. Apostol, this Court explained: The cases relating
to the subject of repeal by implication all proceed on the
assumption that if the act of later date clearly reveals an
intention on the part of the lawmaking power to abrogate
the prior law, this intention must be given effect; but
there must always be a sufficient revelation of this
intention, and it has become an unbending rule of
statutory construction that the intention to repeal a
former law will not be imputed to the Legislature when it
appears that the two statutes, or provisions, with
reference to which the question arises bear to each
other the relation of general to special.
There is no sufficient indication of an implied repeal of
P.D. 1869. On the contrary, as the private respondent
points out, PAGCOR is mentioned as the source of
funding in two later enactments of Congress, to wit, R.A.
7309, creating a Board of Claims under the Department
of Justice for the benefit of victims of unjust punishment
or detention or of violent crimes, and R.A. 7648,
providing for measures for the solution of the power
crisis. PAGCOR revenues are tapped by these two
statutes. This would show that the PAGCOR charter has
not been repealed by the LGC but has in fact been
improved as it were to make the entity more responsive
to the fiscal problems of the government.
It is a canon of legal hermeneutics that instead of pitting
one statute against another in an inevitably destructive
confrontation, courts must exert every effort to reconcile
them, remembering that both laws deserve a becoming
respect as the handiwork of a coordinate branch of the
government. On the assumption of a conflict between
P.D. 1869 and the Code, the proper action is not to
uphold one and annul the other but to give effect to both
by harmonizing them if possible. This is possible in the
case before us. The proper resolution of the problem at
hand is to hold that under the LGC, local government
units may (and indeed must) prevent and suppress all
kinds of gambling within their territories except only
those allowed by statutes like P.D. 1869. The exception
reserved in such laws must be read into the Code, to
make both the Code and such laws equally effective and
mutually complementary.
This approach would also affirm that there are indeed
two kinds of gambling, to wit, the illegal and those
authorized by law. Legalized gambling is not a modern
concept; it is probably as old as illegal gambling, if not
indeed more so. The petitioners' suggestion that the
Code authorizes them to prohibit all kinds of gambling
would erase the distinction between these two forms of
gambling without a clear indication that this is the will of
the legislature. Plausibly, following this theory, the City
of Manila could, by mere ordinance, prohibit the
Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office from conducting
a lottery as authorized by R.A. 1169 and B.P. 42 or stop
the races at the San Lazaro Hippodrome as authorized
by R.A. 309 and R.A. 983.
In light of all the above considerations, we see no way of
arriving at the conclusion urged on us by the petitioners
that the ordinances in question are valid. On the
contrary, we find that the ordinances violate P.D. 1869,
which has the character and force of a statute, as well
as the public policy expressed in the decree allowing the
playing of certain games of chance despite the
prohibition of gambling in general.
The rationale of the requirement that the ordinances
should not contravene a statute is obvious. Municipal
governments are only agents of the national
government. Local councils exercise only delegated
legislative powers conferred on them by Congress as
the national lawmaking body. The delegate cannot be
superior to the principal or exercise powers higher than
those of the latter. It is a heresy to suggest that the local
government units can undo the acts of Congress, from
which they have derived their power in the first place,
and negate by mere ordinance the mandate of the
statute.
Municipal corporations owe their origin to, and derive
their powers and rights wholly from the legislature. It
breathes into them the breath of life, without which they
cannot exist. As it creates, so it may destroy. As it may
destroy, it may abridge and control. Unless there is
some constitutional limitation on the right, the legislature
might, by a single act, and if we can suppose it capable
of so great a folly and so great a wrong, sweep from
existence all of the municipal corporations in the State,
and the corporation could not prevent it. We know of no
limitation on the right so far as to the corporation
themselves are concerned. They are, so to phrase it, the
mere tenants at will of the legislature.
This basic relationship between the national legislature
and the local government units has not been enfeebled
by the new provisions in the Constitution strengthening
the policy of local autonomy. Without meaning to detract
from that policy, we here confirm that Congress retains
control of the local government units although in
significantly reduced degree now than under our
previous Constitutions. The power to create still includes
the power to destroy. The power to grant still includes
the power to withhold or recall. True, there are certain
notable innovations in the Constitution, like the direct
conferment on the local government units of the power
to tax, 12 which cannot now be withdrawn by mere
statute. By and large, however, the national legislature is
still the principal of the local government units, which
cannot defy its will or modify or violate it.
Court holds that the power of PAGCOR to centralize and
regulate all games of chance, including casinos on land
and sea within the territorial jurisdiction of the
Philippines, remains unimpaired. P.D. 1869 has not
been modified by the LGC, which empowers the local
government units to prevent or suppress only those
forms of gambling prohibited by law. Casino gambling is
authorized by P.D. 1869. This decree has the status of a
statute that cannot be amended or nullified by a mere
ordinance. Hence, it was not competent for the
Sangguniang Panlungsod of Cagayan de Oro City to
enact Ordinance No. 3353 prohibiting the use of
buildings for the operation of a casino and Ordinance
No. 3375-93 prohibiting the operation of casinos.


MMDA v. Bel-Air
Facts: BAVA is the registered owner of Neptune Street,
a road inside Bel-Air Village. Neptune runs parallel to
Kalayaan Avenue, a national road open to the general
public. Dividing the two (2) streets is a concrete
perimeter wall approximately fifteen (15) feet high. The
western end of Neptune Street intersects Nicanor
Garcia, formerly Reposo Street, a subdivision road open
to public vehicular traffic, while its eastern end intersects
Makati Avenue, a national road. Both ends of Neptune
Street are guarded by iron gates.
On December 30, 1995, respondent received from
petitioner, through its Chairman, a notice dated
December 22, 1995 requesting respondent to open
Neptune Street to public vehicular traffic starting
January 2, 1996. On the same day, respondent was
apprised that the perimeter wall separating the
subdivision from the adjacent Kalayaan Avenue would
be demolished.
On January 2, 1996, respondent instituted against
petitioner before the Regional Trial Court, Branch 136,
Makati City, Civil Case No. 96-001 for injunction.
Respondent prayed for the issuance of a temporary
restraining order and preliminary injunction enjoining the
opening of Neptune Street and prohibiting the demolition
of the perimeter wall.
RTC: issued TRO, after due hearing, the trial court
denied issuance of a preliminary injunction.
CA: MMDA has no authority to order the opening of
Neptune Street, a private subdivision road and cause
the demolition of its perimeter walls. It held that the
authority is lodged in the City Council of Makati by
ordinance.

Issue: WON the MMDA has the mandate to open
Neptune Street to public traffic pursuant to its regulator
and police powers.
MMDA: it has the authority to open Neptune Street to
public traffic because it is an agent of the state endowed
with police power in the delivery of basic services in
Metro Manila. One of these basic services is traffic
management which involves the regulation of the use of
thoroughfares to insure the safety, convenience and
welfare of the general public. It is alleged that the police
power of MMDA was affirmed by this Court in the
consolidated cases of Sangalang v. Intermediate
Appellate Court. From the premise that it has police
power, it is now urged that there is no need for the City
of Makati to enact an ordinance opening Neptune street
to the public.
Police power is an inherent attribute of sovereignty. It
has been defined as the power vested by the
Constitution in the legislature to make, ordain, and
establish all manner of wholesome and reasonable laws,
statutes and ordinances, either with penalties or without,
not repugnant to the Constitution, as they shall judge to
be for the good and welfare of the commonwealth, and
for the subjects of the same. The power is plenary and
its scope is vast and pervasive, reaching and justifying
measures for public health, public safety, public morals,
and the general welfare.
It bears stressing that police power is lodged primarily in
the National Legislature. It cannot be exercised by any
group or body of individuals not possessing legislative
power. The National Legislature, however, may delegate
this power to the President and administrative boards as
well as the lawmaking bodies of municipal corporations
or LGUs. Once delegated, the agents can exercise only
such legislative powers as are conferred on them by the
national lawmaking body.
A local government is a "political subdivision of a nation
or state which is constituted by law and has substantial
control of local affairs." The LGC of 1991 defines a LGU
as a "body politic and corporate", one endowed with
powers as a political subdivision of the National
Government and as a corporate entity representing the
inhabitants of its territory. LGUs are the provinces, cities,
municipalities and barangays. They are also the
territorial and political subdivisions of the state.
Our Congress delegated police power to the LGUs in
the LGC of 1991. LGUs exercise police power through
their respective legislative bodies. The legislative body
of the provincial government is the sangguniang
panlalawigan, that of the city government is the
sangguniang panlungsod, that of the municipal
government is the sangguniang bayan, and that of the
barangay is the sangguniang barangay. The LGC of
1991 empowers the sangguniang panlalawigan,
sangguniang panlungsod and sangguniang bayan to
"enact ordinances, approve resolutions and appropriate
funds for the general welfare of the [province, city or
municipality, as the case may be], and its inhabitants
pursuant to Section 16 of the Code and in the proper
exercise of the corporate powers of the [province, city
municipality] provided under the Code. The same Code
gives the sangguniang barangay the power to "enact
ordinances as may be necessary to discharge the
responsibilities conferred upon it by law or ordinance
and to promote the general welfare of the inhabitants
thereon."
Metropolitan or Metro Manila is a body composed of
several LGUs - i.e., twelve (12) cities and five (5)
municipalities, namely, the cities of Caloocan, Manila,
Mandaluyong, Makati, Pasay, Pasig, Quezon,
Muntinlupa, Las Pinas, Marikina, Paranaque and
Valenzuela, and the municipalities of Malabon, ,
Navotas, , Pateros, San Juan and Taguig. With the
passage of Republic Act (R. A.) No. 7924 [24] in 1995,
Metropolitan Manila was declared as a "special
development and administrative region" and the
Administration of "metro-wide" basic services affecting
the region placed under "a development authority"
referred to as the MMDA.
"Metro-wide services" are those "services which have
metro-wide impact and transcend local political
boundaries or entail huge expenditures such that it
would not be viable for said services to be provided by
the individual LGUs comprising Metro Manila." There
are seven (7) basic metro-wide services and the scope
of these services cover the following: (1) development
planning; (2) transport and traffic management; (3) solid
waste disposal and management; (4) flood control and
sewerage management; (5) urban renewal, zoning and
land use planning, and shelter services; (6) health and
sanitation, urban protection and pollution control; and (7)
public safety. The basic service of transport and traffic
management includes the following: "(b) Transport and
traffic management which include the formulation,
coordination, and monitoring of policies, standards,
programs and projects to rationalize the existing
transport operations, infrastructure requirements, the
use of thoroughfares, and promotion of safe and
convenient movement of persons and goods; provision
for the mass transport system and the institution of a
system to regulate road users; administration and
implementation of all traffic enforcement operations,
traffic engineering services and traffic education
programs, including the institution of a single ticketing
system in Metropolitan Manila;"
The scope of the MMDAs function is limited to the
delivery of the seven (7) basic services. One of these is
transport and traffic management which includes the
formulation and monitoring of policies, standards and
projects to rationalize the existing transport operations,
infrastructure requirements, the use of thoroughfares
and promotion of the safe movement of persons and
goods. It also covers the mass transport system and the
institution of a system of road regulation, the
administration of all traffic enforcement operations,
traffic engineering services and traffic education
programs, including the institution of a single ticketing
system in Metro Manila for traffic violations. Under this
service, the MMDA is expressly authorized "to set the
policies concerning traffic" and "coordinate and regulate
the implementation of all traffic management programs."
In addition, the MMDA may "install and administer a
single ticketing system," fix, impose and collect fines and
penalties for all traffic violations.
It will be noted that the powers of the MMDA are limited
to the following acts: formulation, coordination,
regulation, implementation, preparation, management,
monitoring, setting of policies, installation of a system
and administration. There is no syllable in R. A. No.
7924 that grants the MMDA police power, let alone
legislative power. Even the Metro Manila Council has
not been delegated any legislative power. Unlike the
legislative bodies of the LGUs, there is no provision in R.
A. No. 7924 that empowers the MMDA or its Council to
"enact ordinances, approve resolutions and appropriate
funds for the general welfare" of the inhabitants of Metro
Manila. The MMDA is, as termed in the charter itself, a
"development authority."It is an agency created for the
purpose of laying down policies and coordinating with
the various national government agencies, peoples
organizations, non-governmental organizations and the
private sector for the efficient and expeditious delivery of
basic services in the vast metropolitan area. All its
functions are administrative in nature.
Contrary to petitioners claim, the two Sangalang cases
do not apply to the case at bar. Firstly, both involved
zoning ordinances passed by the municipal council of
Makati and the MMC. In the instant case, the basis for
the proposed opening of Neptune Street is contained in
the notice of December 22, 1995 sent by petitioner to
respondent BAVA, through its president. The notice
does not cite any ordinance or law, either by the
Sangguniang Panlungsod of Makati City or by the
MMDA, as the legal basis for the proposed opening of
Neptune Street. Petitioner MMDA simply relied on its
authority under its charter "to rationalize the use of roads
and/or thoroughfares for the safe and convenient
movement of persons." Rationalizing the use of roads
and thoroughfares is one of the acts that fall within the
scope of transport and traffic management. By no
stretch of the imagination, however, can this be
interpreted as an express or implied grant of ordinance-
making power, much less police power. Secondly, the
MMDA is not the same entity as the MMC in Sangalang.
Although the MMC is the forerunner of the present
MMDA, an examination of Presidential Decree (P. D.)
No. 824, the charter of the MMC, shows that the latter
possessed greater powers which were not bestowed on
the present MMDA.
The MMC was the "central government" of Metro Manila
for the purpose of establishing and administering
programs providing services common to the area. As a
"central government" it had the power to levy and collect
taxes and special assessments, the power to charge
and collect fees; the power to appropriate money for its
operation, and at the same time, review appropriations
for the city and municipal units within its jurisdiction. It
was bestowed the power to enact or approve
ordinances, resolutions and fix penalties for violation of
such ordinances and resolutions. It also had the power
to review, amend, revise or repeal all ordinances,
resolutions and acts of any of the four (4) cities and
thirteen (13) municipalities comprising Metro Manila.
It was the MMC itself that possessed legislative powers.
All ordinances, resolutions and measures recommended
by the Sangguniang Bayan were subject to the MMCs
approval. Moreover, the power to impose taxes and
other levies, the power to appropriate money, and the
power to pass ordinances or resolutions with penal
sanctions were vested exclusively in the MMC. Thus,
Metropolitan Manila had a "central government," i.e., the
MMC which fully possessed legislative and police
powers. Whatever legislative powers the component
cities and municipalities had were all subject to review
and approval by the MMC.
Under the 1987 Constitution, the LGUs became
primarily responsible for the governance of their
respective political subdivisions. The MMAs jurisdiction
was limited to addressing common problems involving
basic services that transcended local boundaries. It did
not have legislative power. Its power was merely to
provide the LGUs technical assistance in the preparation
of local development plans. Any semblance of legislative
power it had was confined to a "review [of] legislation
proposed by the local legislative assemblies to ensure
consistency among local governments and with the
comprehensive development plan of Metro Manila," and
to "advise the local governments accordingly."
When R.A. No. 7924 took effect, Metropolitan Manila
became a "special development and administrative
region" and the MMDA a "special development
authority" whose functions were "without prejudice to the
autonomy of the affected LGUs." The character of the
MMDA was clearly defined in the legislative debates
enacting its charter.
Clearly, the MMDA is not a political unit of government.
The power delegated to the MMDA is that given to the
Metro Manila Council to promulgate administrative rules
and regulations in the implementation of the MMDAs
functions. There is no grant of authority to enact
ordinances and regulations for the general welfare of the
inhabitants of the metropolis. It is thus beyond doubt that
the MMDA is not a LGU or a public corporation endowed
with legislative power. It is not even a "special
metropolitan political subdivision" as contemplated in
Section 11, Article X of the Constitution. The creation of
a "special metropolitan political subdivision" requires the
approval by a majority of the votes cast in a plebiscite in
the political units directly affected. R. A. No. 7924 was
not submitted to the inhabitants of Metro Manila in a
plebiscite. The Chairman of the MMDA is not an official
elected by the people, but appointed by the President
with the rank and privileges of a cabinet member. In fact,
part of his function is to perform such other duties as
may be assigned to him by the President, whereas in
LGUs, the President merely exercises supervisory
authority. This emphasizes the administrative character
of the MMDA.
Clearly then, the MMC under P. D. No. 824 is not the
same entity as the MMDA under R. A. No. 7924. Unlike
the MMC, the MMDA has no power to enact ordinances
for the welfare of the community. It is the LGUs, acting
through their respective legislative councils, that
possess legislative power and police power. In the case
at bar, the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Makati City did
not pass any ordinance or resolution ordering the
opening of Neptune Street, hence, its proposed opening
by petitioner MMDA is illegal and the respondent CA did
not err in so ruling.

MMDA v. Garin

Facts: Dante O. Garin was issued a traffic violation
receipt (TVR) for parking illegally along Gandara Street,
Binondo, Manila. His driver's license was also
confiscated. Shortly before the expiration of the TVR's
validity, the Garin addressed a letter to then MMDA
Chairman Oreta requesting the return of his driver's
license, and expressing his preference for his case to be
filed in court. Receiving no immediate reply, Garin filed
the original complaint with application for preliminary
injunction contending that, in the absence of any
implementing rules and regulations, Sec. 5(f) of Rep. Act
No. 7924 grants the MMDA unbridled discretion to
deprive erring motorists of their licenses, pre-empting a
judicial determination of the validity of the deprivation,
thereby violating the due process clause of the
Constitution. The respondent further contended that the
provision violates the constitutional prohibition against
undue delegation of legislative authority, allowing as it
does the MMDA to fix and impose unspecified and
therefore unlimited - fines and other penalties on erring
motorists. In support of his application for a writ of
preliminary injunction, Garin alleged that he suffered and
continues to suffer great and irreparable damage
because of the deprivation of his license and that,
absent any implementing rules from the Metro Manila
Council, the TVR and the confiscation of his license
have no legal basis. For its part, the MMDA, represented
by the Office of the Solicitor General, pointed out that
the powers granted to it by Sec. 5(f) of RA 7924 are
limited to the fixing, collection and imposition of fines
and penalties for traffic violations, which powers are
legislative and executive in nature; the judiciary retains
the right to determine the validity of the penalty imposed.
It further argued that the doctrine of separation of
powers does not preclude "admixture" of the three
powers of government in administrative agencies. The
MMDA also refuted Garin's allegation that the Metro
Manila Council, the governing board and policy making
body of the petitioner, has as yet to formulate the
implementing rules for Sec. 5(f) of Rep. Act No. 7924
and directed the court's attention to MMDA
Memorandum Circular No. TT-95-001 dated 15 April
1995. Respondent Garin, however, questioned the
validity of MMDA Memorandum Circular No. TT-95-001,
as he claims that it was passed by the Metro Manila
Council in the absence of a quorum. RTC: issued a
temporary restraining order extending the validity of the
TVR as a temporary driver's license for twenty more
days. A preliminary mandatory injunction was granted,
and the MMDA was directed to return the respondent's
driver's license. RTC decision: a. There was indeed no
quorum in that First Regular Meeting of the MMDA
Council held on March 23, 1995, hence MMDA
Memorandum Circular No. TT-95-001, authorizing
confiscation of driver's licenses upon issuance of a TVR,
is void ab initio. b. The summary confiscation of a
driver's license without first giving the driver an
opportunity to be heard; depriving him of a property right
(driver's license) without DUE PROCESS; not filling (sic)
in Court the complaint of supposed traffic infraction,
cannot be justified by any legislation (and is) hence
unconstitutional.

Issues: 1. WON a license to operate a motor vehicle is a
privilege that the state may withhold in the exercise of its
police power. YES.
The petitioner correctly points out that a license to
operate a motor vehicle is not a property right, but a
privilege granted by the state, which may be suspended
or revoked by the state in the exercise of its police
power, in the interest of the public safety and welfare,
subject to the procedural due process requirements.
State ex. Rel. Sullivan: "the legislative power to regulate
travel over the highways and thoroughfares of the state
for the general welfare is extensive. It may be exercised
in any reasonable manner to conserve the safety of
travelers and pedestrians. Since motor vehicles are
instruments of potential danger, their registration and the
licensing of their operators have been required almost
from their first appearance. The right to operate them in
public places is not a natural and unrestrained right, but
a privilege subject to reasonable regulation, under the
police power, in the interest of the public safety and
welfare. The power to license imports further power to
withhold or to revoke such license upon noncompliance
with prescribed conditions."
Commonwealth v. Funk: "Automobiles are vehicles of
great speed and power. The use of them constitutes an
element of danger to persons and property upon the
highways. Carefully operated, an automobile is still a
dangerous instrumentality, but, when operated by
careless or incompetent persons, it becomes an engine
of destruction. The Legislature, in the exercise of the
police power of the commonwealth, not only may, but
must, prescribe how and by whom motor vehicles shall
be operated on the highways. One of the primary
purposes of a system of general regulation of the
subject matter, as here by the Vehicle Code, is to insure
the competency of the operator of motor vehicles. Such
a general law is manifestly directed to the promotion of
public safety and is well within the police power."
The common thread running through the cited cases is
that it is the legislature, in the exercise of police power,
which has the power and responsibility to regulate how
and by whom motor vehicles may be operated on the
state highways.

2. WON the MMDA is vested with police power. NO.
Metro Manila Development Authority v. Bel-Air Village
Association, Inc., we categorically stated that Rep. Act
No. 7924 does not grant the MMDA with police power,
let alone legislative power, and that all its functions are
administrative in nature. Tracing the legislative history of
RA 7924 creating the MMDA, we concluded that the
MMDA is not a local government unit or a public
corporation endowed with legislative power, and, unlike
its predecessor, the Metro Manila Commission, it has no
power to enact ordinances for the welfare of the
community. Thus, in the absence of an ordinance from
the City of Makati, its own order to open the street was
invalid.
Police power, as an inherent attribute of sovereignty, is
the power vested by the Constitution in the legislature to
make, ordain, and establish all manner of wholesome
and reasonable laws, statutes and ordinances, either
with penalties or without, not repugnant to the
Constitution, as they shall judge to be for the good and
welfare of the commonwealth, and for the subjects of the
same. Having been lodged primarily in the National
Legislature, it cannot be exercised by any group or body
of individuals not possessing legislative power. The
National Legislature, however, may delegate this power
to the president and administrative boards as well as the
lawmaking bodies of municipal corporations or local
government units (LGUs). Once delegated, the agents
can exercise only such legislative powers as are
conferred on them by the national lawmaking body.
Congress delegated police power to the LGUs in LGC. A
local government is a "political subdivision of a nation or
state which is constituted by law and has substantial
control of local affairs." Local government units are the
provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays, which
exercise police power through their respective legislative
bodies. Metropolitan or Metro Manila is a body
composed of several local government units. With the
passage of Rep. Act No. 7924 in 1995, Metropolitan
Manila was declared as a "special development and
administrative region" and the administration of "metro-
wide" basic services affecting the region placed under "a
development authority" referred to as the MMDA. Thus:
the powers of the MMDA are limited to the following
acts: formulation, coordination, regulation,
implementation, preparation, management, monitoring,
setting of policies, installation of a system and
administration. There is no syllable in R. A. No. 7924
that grants the MMDA police power, let alone legislative
power. Even the Metro Manila Council has not been
delegated any legislative power. Unlike the legislative
bodies of the local government units, there is no
provision in R. A. No. 7924 that empowers the MMDA or
its Council to "enact ordinances, approve resolutions
and appropriate funds for the general welfare" of the
inhabitants of Metro Manila. The MMDA is, as termed in
the charter itself, a "development authority." It is an
agency created for the purpose of laying down policies
and coordinating with the various national government
agencies, people's organizations, non-governmental
organizations and the private sector for the efficient and
expeditious delivery of basic services in the vast
metropolitan area.
Clearly, the MMDA is not a political unit of government.
The power delegated to the MMDA is that given to the
Metro Manila Council to promulgate administrative rules
and regulations in the implementation of the MMDA's
functions. There is no grant of authority to enact
ordinances and regulations for the general welfare of the
inhabitants of the metropolis.
3. WON Sec. 5(f) grants the MMDA with the duty to
enforce existing traffic rules and regulations. YES.
Section 5 of RA 7924 enumerates the "Functions and
Powers of the Metro Manila Development Authority."
The contested clause in Sec. 5(f) states that the
petitioner shall "install and administer a single ticketing
system, fix, impose and collect fines and penalties for all
kinds of violations of traffic rules and regulations,
whether moving or nonmoving in nature, and confiscate
and suspend or revoke drivers' licenses in the
enforcement of such traffic laws and regulations, the
provisions of RA 4136 and P.D. No. 1605 to the contrary
notwithstanding," and that "(f)or this purpose, the
Authority shall enforce all traffic laws and regulations in
Metro Manila, through its traffic operation center, and
may deputize members of the PNP, traffic enforcers of
local government units, duly licensed security guards, or
members of non-governmental organizations to whom
may be delegated certain authority, subject to such
conditions and requirements as the Authority may
impose."
Thus, where there is a traffic law or regulation validly
enacted by the legislature or those agencies to whom
legislative powers have been delegated (the City of
Manila in this case), the petitioner is not precluded and
in fact is duty-bound to confiscate and suspend or
revoke drivers' licenses in the exercise of its mandate of
transport and traffic management, as well as the
administration and implementation of all traffic
enforcement operations, traffic engineering services and
traffic education programs.

CASE DIGEST (Transportation Law): Bantangas CATV
vs. C.A.
BATANGAS CATV, INC. vs. THE COURT OF
APPEALS, THE BATANGAS CITY SANGGUNIANG
PANLUNGSOD and BATANGAS CITY MAYOR [G.R.
No. 138810. September 29, 2004]

FACTS:
On July 28, 1986, respondent Sangguniang Panlungsod
enacted Resolution No. 210 granting petitioner a permit
to construct, install, and operate a CATV system in
Batangas City. Section 8 of the Resolution provides that
petitioner is authorized to charge its subscribers the
maximum rates specified therein, provided, however,
that any increase of rates shall be subject to the
approval of the Sangguniang Panlungsod.

Sometime in November 1993, petitioner increased its
subscriber rates from P88.00 to P180.00 per month. As
a result, respondent Mayor wrote petitioner a letter
threatening to cancel its permit unless it secures the
approval of respondent Sangguniang Panlungsod,
pursuant to Resolution No. 210.

Petitioner then filed with the RTC, Branch 7, Batangas
City, a petition for injunction alleging that respondent
Sangguniang Panlungsod has no authority to regulate
the subscriber rates charged by CATV operators
because under Executive Order No. 205, the National
Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has the sole
authority to regulate the CATV operation in the
Philippines.

ISSUE :
may a local government unit (LGU) regulate the
subscriber rates charged by CATV operators within its
territorial jurisdiction?

HELD: No.

x x x

The logical conclusion, therefore, is that in light of the
above laws and E.O. No. 436, the NTC exercises
regulatory power over CATV operators to the exclusion
of other bodies.

x x x

Like any other enterprise, CATV operation maybe
regulated by LGUs under the general welfare clause.
This is primarily because the CATV system commits the
indiscretion of crossing public properties. (It uses public
properties in order to reach subscribers.) The physical
realities of constructing CATV system the use of public
streets, rights of ways, the founding of structures, and
the parceling of large regions allow an LGU a certain
degree of regulation over CATV operators.

x x x

But, while we recognize the LGUs power under the
general welfare clause, we cannot sustain Resolution
No. 210. We are convinced that respondents strayed
from the well recognized limits of its power. The flaws in
Resolution No. 210 are: (1) it violates the mandate of
existing laws and (2) it violates the States deregulation
policy over the CATV industry.

LGUs must recognize that technical matters concerning
CATV operation are within the exclusive regulatory
power of the NTC.