Republic of the Philippines
CENTRAL BOARD OF ASSESSMENT APPEALS M a n I l a

MRS. CONSORCIA PRISNO, Petitioner-Appellant,

– versus –

CBAA CASE NO. V-20 Re: TD#02600159

CITY ASSESSOR OF TACLOBAN CITY,
Respondent-Appellee,

– and –

LOCAL BOARD OF ASSESSMENT APPEALS OF TACLOBAN CITY,
Appellee. x——————————————————–x

D E C I S I O N

It appears from the records that Petitioner-Appellant, in a letter dated 31

July 2002, requested Respondent-Appellee for a re-evaluation of her building

covered by Tax Declaration No. 02600159, claiming that the market value of

P1,498,144.00 adopted by Respondent-Appellee was unjust and unfair

considering that the actual construction cost of the same building was only

P600,000.00

Having received no written reply, Petitioner-Appellant sent a follow-up

letter dated January 6, 2003 to Respondent-Appellee.

In his letter dated 07 January 2003, Respondent-Appellee stated that he

thought a reply to Petitioner-Appellant’s letter of 31 July 2002 was no longer

necessary since Petitioner-Appellant personally came to the City Assessor’s

Office before August 9, 2002, the date the City Assessor received said letter from

Petitioner-Appellant, that, on said occasion, Petitioner-Appellant’s request for re-

evaluation was discussed and Petitioner-Appellant was advised to elevate her

case to the Local Board of Assessment Appeals; that, after some time,

Petitioner-Appellant personally came back to say that she did not receive any

Notice of Assessment on subject property; that the Respondent-Appellee

Reference: Book X, pp. 68-72

informed Petitioner-Appellant that the said Notice was received by a certain Joel

Paragas, Petitioner-Appellant’s representative, on July 21, 2000 per a

certification issued on October 21, 2002 by the Philippine Postal Corporation;

that on 25 November 2002, Petitioner-Appellant personally came back to the

Assessor’s Office, carrying a note dated 25 November 2000 from the City

Administrator saying that Petitioner-Appellant did not know said Joel Paragas;

and that Petitioner-Appellant was again advised to elevate her case to the LBAA.

Petitioner-Appellant filed her appeal with the LBAA of Tacloban City on

January 20, 2003, stating that she could not file her appeal within the prescribed

period of sixty (60) days because of the fact that the person who received the

Notice of Assessment was unknown to her. She alleged that the assessment

complained of was very unjust and unfair considering that the actual cost of the

subject building was only P600,000.00, erected on a 35-square meter lot and

yielding P4,000.00 rental per month.

The Register of Deeds of Tacloban City, as Chairman of the Local Board

of Assessment Appeals of Tacloban City, sent to Petitioner-Appellant a letter-

decision dated March 24, 2003, the dispositive portion of which reads as follows:

After a thorough and careful evaluation of the said appeal based on the Tax Declaration and Sketch Plan of the exact location of the said property which you have submitted to the Board, the undersigned, acting as Chairman of the LBAA, affirm and confirm the same finding made by the City Assessors Office.

“In view thereof, we are advising you to elevate this matter to the Central Board of Assessment Appeals, as provided for under Section 230 of The Local Government Code of 1991.”

Petitioner-Appellant’s instant appeal to the Central Board was postmarked

as registered on April 30, 2003 and ultimately received by this Board on May 13,

2003.

Alleging that she received a copy of the questioned letter-decision of the

LBAA of Tacloban City on March 30, 2003, Petitioner-Appellant stated that the

subject building was a three-storey structure built on a 35-square meter lot away

from the commercial district of Tacloban City, that said building was intended for

Reference: Book X, pp. 68-72

occupancy of only one family since a common stairway serving all floors was

located inside the building; that said building was rented for only P4,000.00 a

month; and that the market value of said building should have been less than

P600,000.00 – not P 1,498,144.00 – and the assessment level should have been

only 25% instead of 60%.

Section 227 of R.A. 7160, otherwise known as the Local Government

Code of 1991, states that Local Board of Assessment Appeals of the province or

city shall be composed of: (1) the provincial or city Registrar of Deeds as

Chairman, (2) the provincial or city prosecutor and (3) the provincial or city

engineer as members.

As envisioned by Congress, the Local Boards are collegial and quasi-

judicial bodies. The Local Boards’ decisions on appeals before said boards

should have the assent of at least a majority – meaning, at least two (2) – of the

members of said boards.

Apparently, the letter-decision dated March 24, 2003 and signed solely by

the Chairman of the LBAA of Tacloban City is not in conformity with the law.

However, to remand this case back to the LBAA of Tacloban would be an

exercise of futility since the defect would be cured by just reproducing the same

letter-decision to be signed by at least a majority of the members of said local

board.

We have, therefore, opted to decide the instant appeal on its merits.

In her appeal to the local board, Petitioner-Appellant stated that she could

not file her appeal within the prescribed period because the person who received

the Notice of Assessment was unknown to her. The instant appeal is completely

silent on this matter. Nonetheless, we felt compelled to discuss this matter as it

pertains to the jurisdiction of the LBAA of Tacloban City.

Attached to Petitioner-Appellant’s appeal with the Local Board were,

among others, a copy of the Notice of Assessment of Real Property dated July

Reference: Book X, pp. 68-72

20, 2002 and a copy of the Certification issued by the Philippine Postal

Corporation on October 21, 2002.

Under the “Summary of Assessment” of said Notice were written

“Commercial Building” as Kind of Property, “02600159” as ARP NO.,

P1,498,144.00” as Market Value, and P898,890.00” as Assessed Value.

The certification issued by the Philippine Postal Corporation states that

“per records obtaining at Tacloban City Central Post Office, Reglet No. 1551

addressed to Consorcia D. Prisno of Rizal Ave., Ext. Quarry Dist., Tacloban City

was delivered and duly receipt by one Joel Paragas her representative on July

21, 2000.”

Petitioner-Appellant first complained on the alleged unjust and unfair

market value placed by the City Assessor on Petitioner-Appellant’s building

under Tax Declaration No. 02600159 in her letter dated 31 July 2002. She did

not say when and under what circumstances she got hold of the tax declaration.

It is safe to assume, however, that she got it together with the Notice of

Assessment since, as is customary, when a Notice is sent out, the corresponding

tax declaration is attached thereto.

Since the Notice was received by one Joel Paragas on July 21, 2000,

Petitioner-Appellant should have filed her appeal with the LBAA of Tacloban City

within sixty (60) days from then – or not later than September 19, 2000 –

pursuant to the provisions of Section 226 of R.A. 7160. Even granting arguendo,

that Petitioner-Appellant received the Notice as early as July 31, 2002 – the date

of her first letter to the City Assessor – she should have filed her appeal with the

Local Board not later than September 29, 2002. The appeal with the Local Board

was filed on January 20, 2003, clearly beyond the reglementary period

prescribed by law.

The instant appeal itself was filed (or mailed) late. Section 229(c) of R.A.

7160 states that “. . . The owner of the property or person having legal interest

therein or the assessor who is not satisfied with the decision of the (Local) Board

Reference: Book X, pp. 68-72

may, within thirty (30) days after receipt of the decision of said Board, appeal to

the Central Board of Assessment Appeals . . .” As stated hereinabove, the

appeal to this Board was postmarked as registered mail at the Tacloban City

Central Post Office on April 30, 2003. Contrary to Petitioner-Appellant’s

allegation that she received a copy of the Local Board’s decision on March 30,

2003, the copy of the same decision on file with the Local Board of Tacloban City

clearly shows that Petitioner-Appellant, Mrs. Consorcia Prisno, received a copy

thereof on March 28, 2003. The thirty-day period ended on April 27, 2003, three

(3) days before Petitioner-Appellant registered her appeal with the Tacloban City

Central Post Office.

WHEREFORE, premises considered, the instant appeal is hereby

DISMISSED.

SO ORDERED.

Manila, Philippines, February 27, 2004.

(Signed) CESAR S. GUTIERREZ
Chairman

(Signed)

ANGEL P. PALOMARES VACANT Member Member

Reference: Book X, pp. 68-72