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Prof. Joselito Guianan Chan's The Labor Code of the Philippines, Annotated Labor Standards & Social Legislation Volume I of a 3-Volume Series 2019 Edition (3rd Revised Edition)
 

 
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UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

 
PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

   
September-2009 Jurisprudence                 

  • A.C. No. 6672 - Pedro L. Linsangan v. Atty. Nicodemes Tolentino

  • A.C. No. 5955 - John Christen S. Hegna v. Atty. Goering G.C. Paderanga

  • A.C. No. 7297 - Imdelda Bides-Ulaso v. Atty. Edita Noe-Lacsamana

  • A.C. No. 7435 - Rey C. Sarmiento, et al. v. Atty. Edelson G. Oliva

  • A.C. No. 7547 - Gregory U. chan v. NLRC Commissioner Romeo L. Go, et al.

  • A.C. No. 7910 - Wen Ming W. Chen a.k.a. Domingo Tan v. Atty. F.D. Nicolas B. Pichay

  • A.M. No. 01-1-04-SC-PHILJA - Re: Further clarifying and strengthening the organization strcture and administrative set-up of the Philippine Judicial Academy

  • A.M. No. 06-3-07-SC - Request for the approval of the revised qualification standard for the chief of MISO

  • A.M. No. 2009-04-SC - Complaint of Atty. Wilhelmina D. Geronga againts Mr. Ross C. Romero, driver, shuttle bus no. 5 for reckless driving

  • A.M. No. CTA-05-2 - Office of the Court Administrator v. Concepcion G. Espineda, etc.

  • A.M. No. MTJ-06-1623 Formerly OCA IPI No. 04-1635-MTJ, A.M. NO. MTJ-06-1624 Formerly OCA IPI No. 04-1636-MTJ, A.M. NO. MTJ-06-1625 Formerly OCA IPI No. 04-1630-MTJ, A.M. NO. MTJ-06-1627 Formerly OCA IPI No. 04-1661-MTJ, A.M. NO. P-09-2693 Formerly OCA IPI

  • A.M. No. P-05-2046 Formerly No. 05-6-159-MCTC - Office of the Court Administrator v. Clerk of Court Fe P. Ganzan, MCTC, Jasaan, Misamis Oriental

  • A.M. No. P-06-2264 Formerly OCA I.P.I Nos. 05-2136-P and 05-2137-P - Atty. Lelu P. Contreras v. Teresita O. Monge, Clerk IV, Rigional Trial Court - Office of the Clerk of Court, Iriga City

  • A.M. No. P-07-2332 Formerly OCA I.P.I No. 07-2511-P - Dr. Salome U. Jorge v. Carlos P. Diaz, Deputy Sheriff, RTC, Branch 20, Tacurong, Sultan Kudarat

  • A.M. No. P-08-2433 Formerly OCA IPI No. 07-2667-P - Judge Jenny Lind Aldecia-Delorino v. Marilyn De Castro Remigio-Versosa, Clerk III, Regional Trial Court, Branch 137, Makati City

  • A.M. No. P-08-2570 Formerly A.M. OCA IPI No. 07-2547-P - Leticia Sales v. Arnel Jose A. Rubio, Sheriff IV, RTC, OCC, Naga City

  • A.M. No. P-09-2685 OCA-IPI No. 08-2839-P - P/Supt. Rene Macaling Orbe v. Marcos U. Digandang, Process Server, Regional Trial Court, Branch 14, Cotabato City

  • A.M. No. RTJ-01-1650 Formerly OCA IPI No. 01-1195-RTJ - Margie Corpus Macias v. Mariano v. Mariano Joaquin S. Macias, Presiding Judge, Branh 28, Regional Trial Court, Liloy, Zamboanga del Norte

  • A.M. No. RTJ-07-2089 Formerly OCA I.P.I. No. 07-2659-RTJ and A.M. NO. RTJ-0921-99 Formerly OCA I.P.I. No. 07-2698-RTJ- Land Bank of the Philippines v. Judge Ernesto P. Pagayatan

  • G.R. No. 132826 - Rolando Saa v. Integrated Bar of the Philippines, Commissoion on Bar Discipline, Board of Governors, Pasig City and Atty. Freddie A. Venida

  • G.R. NOS. 140743 & 140745 and G.R. NOS. 141451-52 - City Government of Tagaytay v. Hon. Eleuterio F. Guerrero, etc. et al.

  • G.R. No. 146534 - Spouses Hu Chuan Hai and Leonica Lim Hu v. Spouses Renato Unico and Maria Aurora J. Unico

  • G.R. NOS. 147026-27 - Carolina R. Javier v. Sandiganbayan, et al.

  • G.R. No. 148444 - Associated Bank (now United Overseas Bank [Phils.]) v. Spouses Rafael and Monaliza Pronstroller/Spouses Eduardo and Ma. Pilar Vaca (Intervenors)

  • G.R. No. 149588 - Francisco R. Llamas, et al. v. The Honorable Court of Appeals, et al.

  • G.R. No. 150664 - Vicente Dacanay, in his capacity as administrator of the Testate Estate of Tereso D. Fernandez v. Hon. Raphael Prastora Sr., etc., et al.

  • G.R. No. 151969 - Valle Verde Country Club, Inc., et al. v. Victor Africa

  • G.R. No. 152101 - Emcor, Incorporated v. Ma. Lourdes D. Sienes

  • G.R. No. 152614 - Salvador A. Fernandez v. Cristina D. Amagna

  • G.R. No. 154720 - Juan Balbuena and Teodulfo Retuya v. Leona Aparicio Sabay, et al.

  • G.R. No. 156164 - Sps. Leonardo and Milagros Chua v. Hon. Jacinto G. Ang, et al.

  • G.R. No. 157901 - Orix Metro Leasing and Finance Corporation v. M/V "PILAR-I" and Spouses Ernesto Dy and Lourdes Dy

  • G.R. No. 157952 - Jowett K. Golango v. Jone B. Fung

  • G.R. No. 158630 and G.R. No. 162047 - Joyce Y. Lim, represented by her attorney-in-fact Bernardo M. Nicolas

  • G.R. No. 159116 - Sps. Nestor and Felicidad Dadizon v. Hon. Court of Appeals and Sps. Dominador and Elsa Mocorro

  • G.R. No. 159710 - Carmen A. Blas v. Spouses Eduardo and Salud Galapon

  • G.R. No. 161902 - Edgar Mercado v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 162104 - R Transport Corporation v. Eduardo Pante

  • G.R. No. 163270 - Eduardo M. Tomada, Sr. v. RFM Corporation-Bakery Flour Division, et al.

  • G.R. No. 164104 - Philippine National Bank v. Gregorio B. Maraya, Jr. and Wenefrida Maraya

  • G.R. No. 164205 - Oldarico S. Trave o, et al. v. Bobongon Banana Growers Multi-Purpose Cooperative, et al.

  • G.R. No. 164435 - Victoria S. Jarillo v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 164549 - Philippine National Bank v. Spouses Agustin and Pilar Rocamora

  • G.R. No. 164815 - Sr. Inspector Jerry Valeroso v. Court of Appeals and People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 165141 - Peregina Mistica v. Republic of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 166516 - Emma Ver Reyes and Ramon Reyes v. The Register of Deeds of Cavite, et al.

  • G.R. No. 166857 - D.M. Wenceslao & Associates, inc. v. Freyssinet Philippines, Inc.

  • G.R. No. 167330 - Philippine Health Providers, Inc. v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue

  • G.R. No. 167569, G.R. No. 167570 & G.R. No. 171946 - Carlos T. Go., Sr., v. Luis T. Ramos

  • G.R. No. 167955 Formerly G.R. No. 151275 - People of the Philippines v. Armando Padilla y Nicolas

  • G.R. No. 167995 - Julita V. Imuan, et al. v. Juanito Cereno, et al.

  • G.R. No. 168151 - Regional Container Lines (RCL) of Singapore and Shipping Agency v. The Netherlands Insurance Co. (Philippines) Inc.

  • G.R. No. 168446 Formerly G.R. NOS. 144174-75 - People of the Philippines v. Ernesto Cruz, Jr. y Concepcion, et al.

  • G.R. No. 168927 - Arsenio F. Quevedo, et al. v. Benguet Electric Cooperative Incorporated, et al.

  • G.R. No. 169228 - The Alexandra Condominium Corporation v. Laguna Lake Development Authority

  • G.R. No. 169364 - People of the Philippines v. Evangeline Siton y sacil, et al.

  • G.R. No. 169641 - People of the Philippines v. Richard O. Sarcia

  • G.R. No. 169889 - Spouses Simon Yap and Milagros Guevarra v. First e-Bank, Inc.

  • G.R. No. 169919 - B.D. Long Span Builders, Inc. v. R.S. Ampeloquio Realty Development Inc.

  • G.R. No. 169940 - Univeristy of Santo Tomas v. Samahang Manggagawa ng UST (SM-UST)

  • G.R. No. 170072 - Joaquin P. Obieta v. Edward Cheok

  • G.R. No. 170342 - Allan Dizon v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 170482 - Manila Electric Company v. Aguida Vda. De Santiago

  • G.R. No. 171018 - People of the Philippines v. Elly Naelga

  • G.R. No. 171260 - Amparo Robles Cabreza v. Ceferino S. Cabreza Jr., et al.

  • G.R .No. 171491 - Dr. Castor C. De Jesus v. Rafel D. Guerrero III, Cesario R. Pagdilao and Fortuna B. Aquino

  • G.R. No. 171681 - Kei Marie and Bianca Angelica both surnamed Abrera, minors, represented by their parents Evelyn C. Abrera, et al. v. Hon. Romeo F. Barza, in his capacity as Presiding Judge of Regional Trial Court, Branch 61, Makati City and College Assu

  • G.R. No. 171984 - Bandila Maritime Services, Inc. and/or Tokomaru Kaiun Co., Ltd. v. Rolando Dubduban

  • G.R. No. 172217 - Spouses Lydia Flores-Cruz, et al. v. Spouses Leonardo and Iluminada Goli-Cruz, et al.

  • G.R. No. 172447 & G.R. No. 179404 - Iglesia Evangelisca Metodista En Las Islas Filipinas (IEMELIF), Inc. v. Nataniel B. Juane/Nataniel B. Juane v. Iglesia Evangelisca Metodista En Las Islas Filipinas (IEMELIF), Inc.

  • G.R. No. 174116 - Eastern Shipping Lines, Inc. v. Prudential Guarantee and Assurance, Inc.

  • G.R. No. 175064 - Province of Camarines Sur, represented by Governor Luis Raymund F. Villafuerte, Jr. v. Hon. Court of Appeals and City of Naga, represented by Mayor Jesse M. Robredo

  • G.R. No. 175172 - Cresencia Achevara, Alfredo Achevara and Benigno Valdez v. Elvira Ramos, John Arnel Ramos and Kristine Camille Ramos

  • G.R. No. 175528 - PO3 Benito Sombilon, Jr. v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 175490 - Ileana Dr. Macalino v. Bank of the Philippines Islands

  • G.R. No. 176014 - Alice Vitangcol and Norberto Vitangcol v. New Vista Properties, Inc., et al.

  • G.R. No. 176040 - Casa Cebuana Incoporada, et al. v. Ireneo P. Leuterio

  • G.R. No. 176364 - Juanito R. Rimando v. Commission on Elections and Norma O. Magno

  • G.R. No. 176546 - Felicitas P. Ong v. The People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 176700 - Romero Montederamos v. Tri-Union International Corporation

  • G.R. No. 177056 - The Office of the Solicitor General v. Ayala Land Incorporated, et al.

  • G.R. No. 177066 - Joselito Musni Puno (as heir of the late Carlos Puno) v. Puno Enterprises, Inc., represented by Jesusa Puno

  • G.R. No. 177456 - Bank of the Philippine Isalands v. Domingo R. Dando

  • G.R. No. 177531 - Civil Service Commission v. Fatima A. Macud

  • G.R. No. 177705 - Kimberly-Clark Philippines, Inc. v. Nora Dimayuga, et al.

  • G.R. No. 177753 - People of the Philippines v. Benjamin Ocampo

  • G.R. No. 177836 - Edwino A. Torres (deceased), represented and substitute by Alfonso P. Torres III, et al.

  • G.R. NOS. 177857-58, G.R. NO. 178193 and G.R. NO. 180705 - Philippine Coconut Producers Federation, Inc. (COCOFED), Manuel V. Del Rosario, Domingo P. Espina, et al. v. Republic of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 178034, G.R. No. 178117 and G.R. NOS. 186984-85 - Andrew Jame Mcburne v. Eulalio Ganzon, et al.

  • G.R. No. 178485 - People of the Philippines v. Mariano Sapigao, Jr.

  • G.R. No. 178529 - Equitable PCI Bank, Inc (now known as Banco De Oro-EPCI, Inc.) v. Heirs of Antonio C. Tiu, et al.

  • G.R. No. 178543 - People of the Philippines v. Aristo Villanueva

  • G.R. No. 178933 - Recardo S. Silverio, Jr. v. Court of Appeals and Nelia S. Silverio-Dee

  • G.R. No. 179103 and G.R. NO. 180209 - National Power Corporation v. Premier Shipping Lines, Inc.

  • G.R. No. 179213 - People of the Philippines v. Nicolas Gutierrez y Licunan

  • G.R. No. 179313 - Makil U. Pundaodaya v. Commission on Elections, et al.

  • G.R. No. 179319 - Eugene C. Firaza v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 179475 - People of the Philippines v. Daniel Sibunga y Agtoca

  • G.R. No. 179502 - Progressive Trade & Service Enterprises v. Maria Milagrosa Antonio

  • G.R. No. 179583 - Jimmy L. Barnes a.k.a. James Barnes v. Teresita C. Reyes, et al.

  • G.R. No. 179799 - Zenaida R. Gregorio v. Court of Appeals, et al.

  • G.R. No. 179862 - Land Bank of the Philippines v. Heirs of Asuncion Anonuevo Vda. Santos, et al.

  • G.R. No. 179944 - People of the Philippines v. Antonio Ortiz, et al.

  • G.R. No. 179985 - Pdilon L. Martinez v. B&B Fish Broker and/or Norberto M. Lucinario

  • G.R. No. 180274 - Virgilio C. Crystal and Glynna F. Cystal v. Bank of the Philippines Islands

  • G.R. No. 180453 - Republic of the Philippines v. Dante C. Abril, represented by his Attorney-in-fact, Manuel C. Blaco, Jr.

  • G.R. No. 180478-79 - The Heritage Hotel of Manila v. National Labor Relations Commission, Rufino C. Ra on II, and Ismael C. Villa

  • G.R. No. 180508 - People of the Philippines v. Antonio v. Antonio Ramos y Viray

  • G.R. No. 180693 - Bonifacio Dolera y Tejada v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 180863 - Angelita Valdez v. Republic of the Philippines

  • G.R. NOS. 180880-81 and G.R. NOS. 180896-97 - Keppel Cebu Shipyard, Inc. v. Pioneer Insurance and Surety Corporation

  • G.R. No. 180888 - Rolando Placido and Edgardo Caragay v. National Labor Relations Commission and Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company, Incorporated

  • G.R. No. 180992 - Elmer Diamante y Sioson, et al. v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 181081 - People of the Philippines v. Roldan Arcosiba alias "Entoy"

  • G.R. No. 181300 - Malayan Insurance Co., Inc. v. Jardine Davies Transport Services, Inc. and Asian Terminals, Inc.

  • G.R. No. 181303 - Carmen Danao Malana, et al. v. Benigno Tappa, et al.

  • G.R. No. 181503 - Bio Quest Marketing Inc. and/or Jose L. Co v. Edmund Rey

  • G.R. No. 181613 - Rosalinda A. Penera v. Commission on Elections and Edgar T. Andanar

  • G.R. No. 181629 - People of the Philippines v. Elizardo Cabiles alias "SARDO"

  • G.R. NOS. 181999 & G.R. No. 182001-04 and G.R. NOS. 182020-24 - Ofelia Caunan v. People of the Philippines, et al.

  • G.R. No. 182185 - Joaquin Ga, Jr., et al. v. Spouses Antonio Tabungan, et al.

  • G.R. No. 182320 - Tacloban Far East Marketing Corporation, et al. v. The Court of Appeals, et al.

  • G.R. No. 183088 - People of the Philippines v. Donato Capco y Sabadlab

  • G.R. No. 183141 - Edgardo H. Catindig v. People of the Philippines, et al.

  • G.R. No. 183142 - Rosita A. Montanez v. Provincial Agrarian Reform Adjudicator (PARAD), et al.

  • G.R. No. 183387 - Simeon M. Valdez v. Financiera Manila Inc.

  • G.R. No. 183457 - People of the Philippines v. Roel Arbalate, et al.

  • G.R. No. 183546 - Wilson A. Go v. Harry A. Go

  • G.R. No. 183646 - Great Southern Maritime Services Corp., et al. v. Leonila Surigao, et al.

  • G.R. No. 183656 - Gilbert Zalameda v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 183802 - Alexander Tam Wong v. Catherine Factor-Koyoma

  • G.R. No. 183965 - Joanie Surposa Uy v. Jose Ngo Chua

  • G.R. No. 184037 - Antonio Lopez y Dela Cruz v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 184225 - Spouses Rogelio F. Lopez and Teotima G. Lopez v. Samuel R. Espinosa and Angelita S. Espinosa

  • G.R. No. 184252 - China Banking Corporation v. Sps. Wenceslao & Marcelina Martir

  • G.R. No. 184268 - Ernesto Batalla v. Commission on Elections and teodoro Bataller

  • G.R. No. 184285 - Rodolfo "Rudy" Canlas, et al. v. Iluminada Tubil

  • G.R. No. 184735 - Miriam B. Elleccion vda. De Lecciones v. National Labor Relations Commission, et al.

  • G.R. No. 184958 - People of the Philippines v. Anthony C. Domingo and Gerry Domingo

  • G.R. No. 185001 - Ronnie H. Lumayna, et al. v. Commission on Audit

  • G.R. No. 185203 - People of the Philippines v. Domingo Araojo

  • G.R. No. 186138 - People of the Philippines v. Loreto Daria y Cruz

  • G.R. No. 186497 - People of the Philippines v. Hasanaddin Guira y Bansil

  • G.R. No. 187043 - People of the Philippines v. Lorenzo Oliva y Rosela

  • G.R. No. 187156 - People of the Philippines v. Melody Gutierrez y Lauriada

  • G.R. No. 187503 - People of the Philippines v. Tecson Lim y Chua and Maximo Flores y Viterbo

  • G.R. No. 188456 - Harry L. Roque, et al. v. Commission on Election, et al.

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    G.R. No. 169228 - The Alexandra Condominium Corporation v. Laguna Lake Development Authority

      G.R. No. 169228 - The Alexandra Condominium Corporation v. Laguna Lake Development Authority

    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    FIRST DIVISION

    [G.R. NO. 169228 : September 11, 2009]

    THE ALEXANDRA CONDOMINIUM CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. LAGUNA LAKE DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY, Respondent.

    D E C I S I O N

    CARPIO, J.:

    The Case

    Before the Court is a Petition for Review assailing the 26 April 2005 Decision1 and 1 August 2005 Resolution2 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 82409.

    The Antecedent Facts

    Philippine Realty and Holdings, Inc. (PhilRealty) developed, established, and constructed The Alexandra Condominium Complex from 1987 to 1993. In a Deed of Conveyance dated 18 April 1988, PhilRealty transferred to The Alexandra Condominium Corporation (TACC) a parcel of land with an area of 9,876 square meters located at 29 Meralco Avenue, Pasig City as well as all the common areas of the project. The land was covered by Transfer Certificate of Title No. 64355.

    The condominium project consists of the following phases:

    (a) Cluster A - 3 Five Storey Buildings; A-1, A-2 and A-3;

    (b) Cluster B - 2 Eleven Storey Buildings; B-1 and B-2;

    (c) Cluster C - 2 Seven Storey Buildings; C-1 and C-2;

    (d) Cluster D - 2 Fourteen Storey Buildings; D-a and D-2; and

    (e) Cluster E - 2 Eleven Storey Buildings; E-1 and E-2.

    On 2 September 1987, the Human Settlements Regulatory Commission issued a Development Permit to PhilRealty to develop Cluster A of the project. In the Development Permit, PhilRealty was required to submit its condominium plans to the Building Official of Pasig City. Architect Walter R. Perez (Architect Perez), then Building Official of Pasig City, reviewed the Site Development and Location Plan as well as the Sanitary/Plumbing Plans and Specifications of the project. On 24 September 1987, Architect Perez issued a Building Permit. On 30 September 1987, Architect Perez issued a Sanitary/Plumbing Permit acknowledging the fixtures to be installed but without indicating the System of Disposal including a Waste Water Treatment Plan. On 15 December 1988, Architect Perez issued a Certificate of Final Inspection and a Certificate of Occupancy for Buildings A-1 to A-3.

    PhilRealty undertook the same process for Clusters B, C, D, and E. Building Permits and Certificates of Final Inspection and Occupancy were issued for these clusters from 1991 to 1993. On 31 December 1993, upon completion of Buildings E-1 and E-2, PhilRealty formally turned over the project to TACC. However, PhilRealty did not turn over the as-built plans for the perimeter drainage layout, the foundation, and the electrical and plumbing layout of the project. Thereafter, TACC managed the project through Century Properties Management Corporation.

    On 24 June 1998, Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) advised TACC that its wastewater did not meet government effluent standards provided in Sections 68 and 69 of the 1978 National Pollution Control Commission Rules and Regulations (NPCC) as amended by Department of Energy and Natural Resources (DENR) Administrative Order No. 34.3 LLDA informed TACC that it must put up its own Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) for its effluent discharge to meet government standards.

    Since a sewage treatment plant would cost approximately P15 million to put up, TACC experimented with a proposed solution from Larutan Resources Development Corporation, which treated the septic vault water with biological enzymes. Still, TACC's water discharge failed to meet the government standards.

    On 26 March 1999, LLDA's Environmental Division collected samples of TACC's wastewater. In a report dated 6 April 1999, LLDA found two determinants in TACC's samples: (1) Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) and (2) Oil/Grease (OG). LLDA found that TACC's samples failed to meet government standards of 150 for COD and 5 for OG.

    In a Notice of Violation4 dated 6 May 1999, LLDA directed TACC to submit corrective measures to abate or control its water effluents discharged into the Laguna de Bay. LLDA likewise imposed upon TACC a daily fine of P1,000 from 26 March 1999 until full cessation of pollutive wastewater discharge.

    TACC entered into an agreement with World Chem Marketing for the construction of the STP for P7,550,000. The construction was completed by the second week of October 2001.

    In an Order dated 19 July 1999, LLDA stated that the daily penalty was imposed upon TACC for the pollutive wastewater discharge, and to condone the penalty would be tantamount to tolerating the pollution of the river bodies and the Laguna de Bay which is contrary to LLDA's mandate.

    On 1 April 2002, TACC requested LLDA to dismiss the water pollution case against it because of the favorable analysis undertaken by the LLDA's Pollution Control Division on 28 February 2002. LLDA conducted a hearing on 26 April 2002. In its position paper filed on 15 May 2002, TACC requested LLDA to condone the imposition of the penalty of P1,000 per day since March 1999 in recognition of the remedial and corrective measures it undertook to comply with government standards.

    On 4 September 2003, LLDA issued an Order requiring TACC to pay a fine of P1,062,000 representing the penalty from 26 March 1999 to 20 February 2002.

    TACC filed a petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals with a prayer for the issuance of a temporary restraining order.

    The Decision of the Court of Appeals

    In its 26 April 2005 Decision, the Court of Appeals resolved the petition as follows:

    WHEREFORE, premises considered, instant petition is DISMISSED. Accordingly, the prayer for temporary restraining order is DENIED.

    SO ORDERED.5

    The Court of Appeals sustained LLDA's contention that the petition for certiorari was prematurely filed. LLDA pointed out that TACC failed to file a motion for reconsideration of the 4 September 2003 Order before filing the petition before the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals also ruled that before a party is allowed to seek the court's intervention, he should have availed of all the means of administrative processes afforded him. The Court of Appeals ruled that the proper remedy should have been to resort to an administrative remedy before the DENR Secretary prior to judicial action. The Court of Appeals noted LLDA's allegation of TACC's offer to compromise, which LLDA countered with an advice to address the offer to the Commission on Audit (COA). Hence, the Court of Appeals found that TACC had not abandoned its administrative remedies despite simultaneous resort to judicial action.

    The Court of Appeals ruled that under Republic Act No. 48506 (RA 4850), as amended by Presidential Decree No. 813,7 LLDA shall be compensated for the damages to the water and aquatic resources of Laguna de Bay resulting from failure to meet established water and effluent quality standards. The Court of Appeals ruled that under Section 4 of Executive Order No. 927, series of 1983,8 LLDA is mandated to "make, alter or modify orders requiring the discontinuation of pollution specifying the conditions and the time within which such discontinuance must be accomplished." Further, the Court of Appeals ruled that Presidential Decree No. 9849 provides for penalties for violation or non-compliance with any order, decision or regulation of the Commission for the control or abatement of pollution.

    TACC filed a motion for reconsideration. In its 1 August 2005 Resolution, the Court of Appeals denied the motion.

    Hence, the petition before this Court.

    The Issues

    TACC raises the following issues in its memorandum:

    1. Whether the Court of Appeals erred in disregarding TACC's exhaustive efforts in complying with the government's standards on effluent discharge; andcralawlibrary

    2. Whether the Court of Appeals erred in finding that the petition for certiorari was prematurely filed.

    The Ruling of this Court

    The petition has no merit.

    Non-Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies

    The Court of Appeals ruled that due to the transfer of LLDA to the DENR under Executive Order No. 14910 (EO 149), TACC should have first resorted to an administrative remedy before the DENR Secretary prior to filing a petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals.

    The doctrine of non-exhaustion of administrative remedies requires that resort be first made with the administrative authorities in the resolution of a controversy falling under their jurisdiction before the controversy may be elevated to a court of justice for review.11 A premature invocation of a court's intervention renders the complaint without cause of action and dismissible.12

    EO 149 transferred LLDA from the Office of the President to the DENR "for policy and program coordination and/or administrative supervision x x x."13 Under EO 149, DENR only has administrative power over LLDA. Administrative power is concerned with the work of applying policies and enforcing orders as determined by proper governmental organs.14

    However, Executive Order No. 19215 (EO 192), which reorganized the DENR, mandates the DENR to "promulgate rules and regulations for the control of water, air and land pollution" and to "promulgate ambient and effluent standards for water and air quality including the allowable levels of other pollutants and radiations."16 EO 192 created the Pollution Adjudication Board17 under the Office of the DENR Secretary which assumed the powers and functions of the NPCC with respect to the adjudication of pollution cases, including NPCC's function to "[s]erve as arbitrator for the determination of reparation, or restitution of the damages and losses resulting from pollution."18 Hence, TACC has an administrative recourse before the DENR Secretary which it should have first pursued before filing a petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals.

    Powers of the LLDA to Impose Penalty

    RA 4850 specifically mandates LLDA to carry out and make effective the declared national policy of promoting and accelerating the development and balanced growth of the Laguna Lake area and the surrounding provinces of Rizal and Laguna and the cities of San Pablo, Manila, Pasay, Quezon and Caloocan with due regard and adequate provisions for environmental management and control, preservation of the quality of human life and ecological systems, and the prevention of undue ecological disturbances, deterioration and pollution.19 LLDA, by virtue of its special charter, has the responsibility to protect the inhabitants of the Laguna Lake region from the deleterious effects of pollutants emanating from the discharge of wastes from the surrounding areas.20

    Under Section 4-A of RA 4850, as amended, LLDA is entitled to compensation for damages resulting from failure to meet established water and effluent quality standards, thus:

    Sec. 4-A. Compensation for damages to the water and aquatic resources of Laguna de Bay and its tributaries resulting from failure to meet established water and effluent quality standards and from such other wrongful act or omission of a person, private or public, juridical or otherwise, punishable under the law shall be awarded to the Authority to be earmarked for water quality control and management.

    In the present case, TACC does not challenge LLDA's authority to impose the fine. However, TACC argues that since it had already exhausted efforts and substantially spent to comply with established effluent quality standards, the daily penalty imposed by the LLDA is an unwarranted financial burden to its unit owners and should thus be condoned. TACC further argues that the non-compliance with government standards was due to the omission and fault of PhilRealty.

    TACC's arguments have no merit.

    PhilRealty formally turned over the project to TACC on 31 December 1993. Thereafter, TACC managed the project. It was almost five years after, or on 24 June 1998, when LLDA advised TACC that its wastewater did not meet government effluent standards. It is clear that the responsibility to comply with government standards lies with TACC. If, as claimed by TACC, the non-compliance was due to the omission and fault of PhilRealty, TACC's recourse is to file an action, if warranted, against PhilRealty in a proper court. TACC cannot escape its liability to LLDA by shifting the blame to PhilRealty. Hence, the LLDA did not abuse its discretion in issuing its 4 September 2003 Order.

    Condonation of Penalty and Pending Offer to Compromise

    As regards the condonation of the penalty, the power to compromise claims is vested exclusively in the COA or Congress pursuant to Section 20 (1), Chapter IV, Subtitle B, Title I, Book V of Executive Order No. 292 (Administrative Code of 1987) which provides:

    Section 20. Power to Compromise Claims. - (1) When the interest of the Government so requires, the Commission may compromise or release in whole or in part, any settled claim or liability to any government agency not exceeding ten thousand pesos arising out of any matter or case before it or within its jurisdiction, and with the written approval of the President, it may likewise compromise or release any similar claim or liability not exceeding one hundred thousand pesos. In case the claim or liability exceeds one hundred thousand pesos, the application for relief therefrom shall be submitted, through the Commission and the President, with their recommendations, to the Congress[.] x x x

    In a letter dated 5 May 2004,21 TACC manifested its offer to compromise by paying a reduced fine of P500,000. In its response dated 8 July 2004,22 LLDA stated that the proposal would be forwarded to LLDA's Board of Directors although "it is necessary that the case be withdrawn from the court." In a letter dated 11 September 2004,23 TACC stated that in a regular meeting held on 6 September 2004, the members of TACC's Board of Directors unanimously agreed to withdraw the petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals, provided the LLDA would agree to reduce the penalty to P500,000. In a letter dated 22 September 2004,24 LLDA referred the offer to its resident auditor Antonio M. Malit (Auditor Malit) on the ground that only the COA had the authority to compromise settlement of obligations to the State. In a letter dated 23 September 2004, Auditor Malit informed LLDA that the power to compromise claims is vested exclusively in the COA pursuant to Section 36 of Presidential Decree No. 1445.25 Auditor Malit stated that the request for compromise should be addressed to COA. However, since the amount of the penalty sought to be condoned is P1,062,000, the authority to compromise such claim is vested exclusively in Congress pursuant to Section 20 (1), Chapter IV, Subtitle B, Title I, Book V of the Administrative Code of 1987. This remedy is not administrative but legislative, and need not be resorted to before filing a judicial action.ςηαñrοblεš νιr†υαl lαω lιbrαrÿ

    Moreover, the Court cannot sustain the Court of Appeals' finding that there was a pending offer to compromise when the petition for certiorari was filed before it. There is nothing in the records that indicates that TACC withdrew its offer of compromise. At the same time, there is also nothing to indicate that TACC submitted a compromise offer to COA, as Auditor Malit had advised. Hence, it is not proven that this petition was simultaneously availed of with the offer to compromise.

    Failure to File a Motion for Reconsideration

    For a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court to prosper, TACC must show that (1) the LLDA acted without or in excess of its jurisdiction or with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction and (2) there is no appeal or a plain, speedy and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law.

    The plain and adequate remedy referred to in Section 1 of Rule 65 is a motion for reconsideration of the assailed decision.26 The purpose of this requirement is to enable the court or agency to rectify its mistakes without the intervention of a higher court.27 To dispense with this requirement, there must be a concrete, compelling, and valid reason for the failure to comply with the requirement.28 Petitioner may not arrogate to itself the determination of whether a motion for reconsideration is necessary or not.29

    In the present case, TACC did not file a motion for reconsideration of the 4 September 2003 Order. TACC also failed to show sufficient compelling and valid reason to dispense with the requirement of filing a motion for reconsideration. Hence, we agree with the Court of Appeals that the petition for certiorari was prematurely filed before it.

    Finally, TACC wants the Court to review the mandate of LLDA to help transform it from a regulatory agency into a developmental and promotional agency. However, we agree with LLDA that such a review of LLDA's charter is not within the jurisdiction of this Court.

    WHEREFORE, we DENY the petition. We AFFIRM the 26 April 2005 Decision and 1 August 2005 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 82409.

    SO ORDERED.


    Endnotes:


    1 Rollo, pp. 33-40. Penned by Associate Justice Arcangelita Romilla-Lontok with Associate Justices Rodrigo V. Cosico and Danilo B. Pine, concurring.

    2 Id. at 42.

    3 Revised Water Usage and Classification/Water Quality Criteria.

    4 Rollo, p. 78.

    5 Id. at 40.

    6 An Act Creating The Laguna Lake Development Authority, Prescribing Its Powers, Functions And Duties, Providing Funds Therefor, And For Other Purposes.

    7 Amending Certain Sections of Republic Act Numbered Eight Hundred Fifty, Otherwise Known As The "Laguna Lake Development Authority Act of 1966." Dated 17 October 1975.

    8 Further Defining Certain Functions And Powers Of The Laguna Lake Development Authority. Dated 16 December 1983.

    9 Providing For The Revision Of Republic Act No. 3931, Commonly Known As The Pollution Control Law, And For Other Purposes.

    10 Streamlining Of The Office Of The President. Dated 28 December 1993.

    11 Estrada v. Court of Appeals, 484 Phil. 730 (2004).

    12 Id.

    13 Section 3.2.

    14 See Review Center Association of the Philippines v. Executive Secretary Ermita, G.R. No. 180046, 2 April 2009.

    15 Providing For The Reorganization Of The Department of Environment, Energy And Natural Resources Renaming It As The Department of Environment And Natural Resources, And For Other Purposes.

    16 Section 5 (o) and (p).

    17 Section 19.

    18 Section 6 (j) of Presidential Decree No. 984 (Providing For The Revision of Republic Act No. 3931, Commonly Known As The Pollution Control Law, And For Other Purposes).

    19 LLDA v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 110120, 16 March 1994, 231 SCRA 292.

    20 Id.

    21 Rollo, pp. 205-206. Through TACC's counsel Anthony B. Peralta.

    22 Id. at 207.

    23 Id. at 208.

    24 Id. at 209.

    25 Ordaining And Instituting A Government Auditing Code of the Philippines. Section 36 provides:

    Section 36. Power to compromise claims.

    1. When the interest of the government so requires, the Commission may compromise or release in whole or in part, any claim or settled liability to any government agency not exceeding ten thousand pesos and with the written approval of the Prime Minister, it may likewise compromise or release any similar claim or liability not exceeding one hundred thousand pesos, the application for relief therefrom shall be submitted, through the Commission and the Prime Minister, with their recommendations, to the National Assembly.

    2. The respective governing bodies of government-owned or controlled corporations, and self-governing boards, commissions or agencies of the government shall have the exclusive power to compromise or release any similar claim or liability when expressly authorized by their charters and if in their judgment, the interest of their respective corporations or agencies so requires. When the charters do not so provide, the power to compromise shall be exercised by the Commission in accordance with the preceding paragraph.

    3. The Commission may, in the interest of the government, authorize the charging or crediting to an appropriate account in the National Treasury, small discrepancies (average or shortage) in the remittances to and disbursements of the National Treasury, subject to the rules and regulations as it may prescribe.

    26 Metro Transit Organization, Inc. v. Court of Appeals, 440 Phil. 743 (2002).

    27 Id.

    28 Id.

    29 Id.

    G.R. No. 169228 - The Alexandra Condominium Corporation v. Laguna Lake Development Authority


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