DENR assures resort owners no re-zoning in Matabungkay

BATANGAS, Philippines – Some resort owners in Barangay Matabunkay in Lian town here are concerned over the ongoing clearing operations in their area for fear that they woild be affected by the alleged re-zoning in the municipality.

Malaki ang epekto sa amin, kasi ang zoning umaabot ng 20 meters so halos lahat ng resorts by the beach (apektado), konti nalang ang matitira. Dati naman walang ganoong regulation,” a resort owner said.

(It is affecting us because zoning reaches 20 meters. That's almost all the resorts by the beach will be affected. There used to be no regulation like this.)

But Environment Officer Januel Peras said there was no reason to panic because there were no talks of rezoning and they were simply implementing the Water Code of the Philippines.

“Sa ngayon ay nagsasagawa pa lamang kami ng inventory ng mga infrastructure sa lugar upang matiyak na sila ay may clearances for environment compliance or guidelines. We will delineate areas na supposedly covered ng salvage zone versus the actual status,” Peras said.

(What we are doing now is an inventory of infrastructures in the area to determine which have clearances for environment compliance or guidelines.) 

He added that the steps they were taking was to ensure that tourist destinations were properly managed and water quality was advisable for swimming purposes.

Peras admits however that they have seen several structures that were within the salvage zone and that they have contacted concerned resort owners.

Sa government naman, kapag legitimate ang claim sa area may just compensation, pero if illegally installed at tatamaan ay inaadvise namin sila na mag self-demolish, pero wala pa tayo sa ganoong stage,” he added.

( For the government, if it is a legitimate claim of the area, there is just compensation. But if its illegally installed and those affected are adivsed  to self-demolish (we will not compensate). But we are still not in that stage.)

The official said they did not want Matabungkay to be ordered closed like Boracay so it is imperative to take steps early. –