Sunday, June 22, 2014

How a municipal ordinance becomes law?

Ordinances and resolutions are not one and the same. An ordinance is a legislative action of a general and permanent character. A resolution is temporary in nature. Both ordinances and resolutions have to go through the following process before they become laws:

1.   A proposed ordinance or resolution is made in writing. It contains an assigned control number, a title, an enacting clause and the date of proposed effectivity. It is accompanied by a brief note explaining why it should be approved.

2.   The ordinance/resolution is posted simultaneously in at least four conspicuous places (town halls, plazas, barangay halls, public markets or churches) or published three times in a locally circulated newspaper within 10 days from its filing.

3.   The ordinance/resolution is referred to an appropriate Sanggunian committee. It will be considered on second reading only if it has been reported on by the assigned committee or certified as urgent by the mayor.

4.   The Sanggunian secretary prepares copies of the proposed ordinance/resolution in the form it was passed on second reading and gives a copy to each Sanggunian member.

5.   The Sanggunian holds public hearing 10 days from sending of notices or the last day of publication of the proposed ordinance, whichever is later.

6.   The Sanggunian passes the proposed ordinance and prepares the minutes. A resolution need not go through a third reading for final consideration unless decided otherwise by a majority of the Sanggunian.

7.   A resolution or ordinance is considered valid only if it was approved by a majority of the members present during a regular or special meeting, where there must be a quorum.

8.   The mayor approves or vetoes the proposed ordinance. In case of a veto, the chief executive notifies the Sanggunian within 10 days in case of a city or municipality. Otherwise, the ordinance is considered approved. The Sanggunian can override a veto with a two-thirds vote.

9.   The ordinance is published in a locally circulated newspaper within 10 days of its approval before it takes effect.

10.  The ordinance undergoes review. The Sangguniang Bayan sends it to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan for review. Action is required within 30 days. Appeals may be raised to the Department of Justice within 30 days from the effectivity of the ordinance. An appeal has no effect of suspending the effectivity of the ordinance.

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