Free potable water required from Bacolod restos

Free Service Water Ordinance

An ordinance requiring all restaurants and food outlets in the City of Bacolod to provide free, safe, and clean potable service water for their customers, was approved by the Bacolod Sangguniang Panlungsod on first reading recently.

The ordinance authored by Councilor Claudio Puentevella said the need for safe and clean water is a basic human right, every human being has the right to safe, clean, affordable and accessible water.

In the City of Bacolod, there are some food establishments that only provide service water when the customer personally asks for it upon or after placing an order. Therefore, there is a need for an ordinance in the City of the Bacolod that would ensure that the constituents and tourists have access to free, safe, clean service water in restaurants and food outlets, it said.

The Ordinance to be known as the “Free Potable Service Water Ordinance of Bacolod City,” mandates that all restaurants and food outlets in the City of Bacolod should provide, serve or offer their customers free potable service water.

The food establishment should post a signage of “Free Service Water” on a conspicuous place inside the premises of the establishment. All restaurants and food outlets in the City of Bacolod must regularly maintain and clean their water dispensers, water vending machines, and water storage containers, it said.

The ordinance provides that the City Health Office (CHO) will be empowered and tasked to be the lead department in the inspection of restaurants and food outlets for the purpose of the implementation of this ordinance. It will also conduct monthly water sampling and bacteriology test at least once a month in establishments, to ensure compliance of the ordinance.

All restaurants and food outlets found violating this ordinance will be duly notified by the CHO, which will then forward the case to the City Legal Office (CLO) for appropriate action. The CLO will then summon the violating establishment for it to settle its violation and comply with the ordinance. Should the establishment refuse to comply or refuse to heed the summons sent by the CLO, the latter will then file the necessary cases before the regular courts, it said.

Complaints from customers, individuals’ persons or group of persons regarding violations of establishments for refusing to serve and offer free clean service water will be coursed through either the City Health Office or City Legal Office. The CLO, after due hearing, will take legal action against recalcitrant violators of this ordinance.

Any establishment found violating this ordinance will be meted a penalty of P1,000 for the first offense; P3,000 – second offense, and P5,000 – third offense, the ordinance added.

(Chrysee Semillano via The Visayan Daily Star (TVDS), photo courtesy of TVDS)

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