The Regional Land Use Committee (RLUC) VIII, during its 20 June 2019 First Semester Meeting, approved the search for two (2) land use planning experts from the private sector to sit as members of the Committee for the term 2019-2021. The search is necessitated by the term expiry of Architect Joel M. Jao of the United Architects of the Philippines-EV Chapter and Environmental Planner Nestor B. Tabungar, Jr. of the Philippine Institute of Environmental Planners-Eastern Visayas Chapter. Both served as land use planning experts for the term 2015-2019.

During the said meeting, Arch. Jao and EnP Tabungar have been awarded with Plaques of Recognition for their significant contributions and inputs to the Committee, particularly in the preparation of the successor Eastern Visayas Regional Physical Framework Plan (EV-RPFP) 2015-2045, 2018-2045 Visayas Spatial Development Framework (VSDF), development of the Baywide Coastal Zoning and Land Use Framework (BCZLUF), and review of the provincial and local plans, namely: 2016-2021 Samar Disaster Risk Reduction/Climate Change Adaptation (DRR/CCA)-Enhanced Provincial Development and Physical Framework Plan (PDPFP), 2017-2022 DRR/CCA-Enhanced PDPFPs of Eastern Samar and Leyte, 2017-2025 Tacloban City Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP) and Zoning Ordinance, and 2017-2027 Ormoc City CLUP and Zoning Ordinance.

The selection of land use planning experts is pursuant to Executive Orders (EO) 770 and 770-A amending Letter of Instruction 1350, otherwise known as “Providing the Institutional Framework for National Physical Planning.” Said EOs reconstituted the National Land Use Committee as a committee of the NEDA Board, which is replicated at the regional level through the RLUC.

Per Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of EO Nos. 770 and 770-A, the land use planning experts will have a term of three (3) years and may be appointed through a process of nomination and confirmation upon meeting the minimum qualification criteria, namely: 1) must be a Filipino citizen, of legal age and not otherwise disqualified by law; 2) has substantial knowledge and experience (at least 3 years) in physical planning, including but not limited to physical/ environment planning, urban and regional development planning, transportation planning, etc; 3) shall not hold any government position in any capacity while serving as the private sector representative to the RLUC; and 4) must be willing and able to participate in all NB-NLUC/RLUC activities. The functions of the land use planning experts from the private sector are: 1) to advise the Committee on the technical merits of proposed land use policies; and 2) to inform the Committee of the private sector’s land use-related concerns.

The NEDA VIII Regional Director, who serves as the Chairperson of the Committee, will be responsible for the final selection of the experts, upon the recommendation of the RLUC VIII Secretariat. Confirmation of the new land use planning experts is scheduled in the Second Semester Meeting of the Committee sometime in October 2019.

Article by: Grace A. Arteche, NEDA VIII