Guico wants fine, jail term against vendors, motorists blocking sidewalks

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By Billy Begas

A lawmaker from Pangasinan has filed a measure seeking to penalize individuals obstructing public sidewalks.

In the proposed Unobstructed Sidewalks Act (House Bill 1252) authored by Rep. Ramon Guico Jr. those who will obstruct sidewalks will be meted with a fine ranging from P10,000 to P30,000 or imprisonment of six months to one year.

“The country’s sidewalks, as has been evidence with our everyday experience of its, has become so crowded with stores and stalls either selling food or rendering various kinds of services,” Guico said.

Guico said a number of people continue to use sidewalks for expanding their homes, homes for their pets, or storage for various materials, “among other selfish reasons.”

Consequently, Guico said pedestrians have no choice but to walk roadside exposed to all kinds of roads hazard.

The mayor, barangay chairperson, or any designated local officer who neglects or fails to enforce the measure shall be administratively liable under the Local Government Code and shall be penalized by a fine ranging from P100,000 to P500,000.

Under the measure, prohibited acts will be:

– vending or selling food, magazines, and other items

– conduct of shoe-shine occupation

– doing house chores such as washing clothes, hanging clothes, and bathing

– vehicle parking or repair

– riding motorcycles, bicycles, and any other kind of vehicle

– dumping garbage

– setting up a basketball court or playing basketball

– use of sidewalk to install animal pens or for keeping animals in chains

– storing soft drink or wine or liquor bottles and cases and drinking liquor and beverages and holding picnics and gathering

– storing of household appliances, furniture, junk, and recyclable

– use of sidewalks for storage of construction materials for sale

– house extension or stall/store extension including installations of roofs or awnings

– installation of permanent or picket fence

– use of sidewalks for unauthorized plants, trees, and plant boxes

– putting up signs or signboards on or above sidewalks and detached from the business establishment

– conducting religious activities like preaching and soliciting donations

– holding a funeral and gambling during such; and

– other such activities that obstruct the free passage of people on sidewalks unless otherwise unauthorized by law

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