MANILA – The Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) has “denied for lack of merit” a petition filed by the Taguig City government seeking to impose real property taxes on the Veterans Federation of the Philippines (VFP).
In a 22-page decision dated September 25 and made public Friday, the tax court’s Third Division under Associate Justice Maria Rowena Modesto-San Pedro ruled that the “VFP is a government instrumentality and thus exempt from paying real property taxes.”
The local government unit (LGU) in 2000 had issued an assessment of RPT against the VFP’s 50-hectare property in Western Bicutan and issued a notice of auction for the same for unpaid taxes amounting to PHP99 million from tax years 1989 to 1999.
The property known as the “Veterans’ Center” was set aside by the government in 1967 under Proclamation No. 192 as a center for different activities of Filipino veterans, including a Veterans Rehabilitation Medical and Training Center.
The VFP claims that while it leases some of its property which includes around 30 buildings, it does so “not as a commercial undertaking but as part of the national government”.
The Pasig City Regional Trial Court, acting on a petition of the VFP, issued a restraining order stopping the auction in March 2000.
In ruling that the entity cannot be taxed, the court said it “rules that the VFP is not a GOCC but a government instrumentality”.
Associate Justices Erlinda P. Uy and Ma. Belen Ringpis-Liban concurred. (PNA)