Permit issues hound Puregold-Lipa


LIPA CITY—Can a company be allowed to operate its business even without a special use permit (SUP)?

With a year gone by since Puregold opened its first branch in Lipa City on September 28, 2014, questions about the legality of its business operations continue to hound the Lucio Co–owned supermarket.

Local councilors are questioning why the company continues to operate its business despite the alleged absence of a permanent SUP.

In a Sept. 7 privilege speech before the city council, Councilor Donato Linatoc said city government officials were

Puregold's branch in Lipa continues to struggle securing a permanent permit to fully operate in the city (TFC file photo)

Puregold’s branch in Lipa continues to struggle securing a permanent permit to fully operate in the city (TFC file photo)

clueless enough of the local legislative body’s decision to grant Puregold a temporary SUP that is valid for six months.

Linatoc also got appalled when the said officials told him Puregold didn’t even have its own copy of the said temporary SUP.

“I knew we gave Puregold a special used permit (on September 16, 2013) but we already revoked it,” Linatoc said.

“Assuming that they don’t even have a temporary special use permit, then it only means that they are illegally conducting their business in the city of Lipa,”

Linatoc likewise called for an investigation to find out the one responsible for issuing a permanent SUP for Puregold, whether there was an error committed in the wordings of their resolution September 16, 2013 granting a temporary SUP to Puregold.

The said matter was referred to the city council’s committee on internal rules.

Lipa City’s Special Ordinance No. 11–2004 provides that a special use permit is included among the requirements for the issuance of a business permit for commercial establishments.

A check with the records of the Sangguniang Panglunsod revealed, however, the council has only issued one SUP to Puregold and that was on Sept. 16, 2013, which has yet to be revoked.

Resolution 233 authorized Mayor Meynardo Sabili to grant an SUP to Puregold Supermarket within a 4,223 square meter lot owned by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Lipa.

Contrary to claims, there’s also no existing resolution passed by the council that gave Puregold a temporary SUP.

Business Permits and Licensing Office (BPLO) Head Carlos Briones maintained Puregold so far has complied with the requirements needed to legally operate its business in Lipa City, which includes the SUP.

Although the company was issued an SUP in Sept. 16, 2013, it was only able to register its business in Lipa City on Sept. 14, 2014.

Briones said it is the city council that is in the right position to revoke Puregold’s SUP if it was deemed necessary and eventually recommend for the closure of Puregold-Lipa.

“We act based on recommendations. If they really think that there’s a violation on the conditions, then they can revoke the SUP and if instructed then we will implement the closure,” Briones told The Filipino Connection.

Councilor Joel Pua, chairman of the council’s committee on trade and industry, said the committee is planning to conduct a hearing in the coming weekson the Puregold-Lipa case.

They will also have an inquiry on Puregold’s alleged failure to comply with the conditions of the previously issued SUP, which required them to put a pedestrian overpass and road access network to ease the flow of traffic in the area.


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