The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is partnering with local government units (LGUs) in the conduct of land titling in an effort to fast track the processing and issuance of land titles over inalienable and disposable lands.
DENR Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje said the move will also provide an opportunity for the LGUs to take an active role in the agency’s programs. “Local government units have critical role to play in the implementation of national programs and projects as provided by the Local Government Code, and one of these is land titling where their help is important particularly in resolving boundary conflicts,” Paje said.
Paje said the LGU-DENR partnership calls for the creation of a composite land adjudication team composed of at least one deputy public land inspector (DPLI) who will work under the supervision of the DENR land management officer (LMO) assigned to the LG. The team will help the DENR in the titling of alienable and disposable lands in cities and municipalities, according to Paje.
“The team is expected to function in its municipality of jurisdiction to assist in land adjudication, dispute resolution and other steps to facilitate and fast tract the land titling,” Paje said.
Under the DENR Administrative Order No. 2011-06 entitled “Prescribing the guidelines for the implementation of public land titling in partnership with local government units”, all the regional executive directors (REDs) of the DENR are authorized to deputize permanent LGU officials that may be assigned to the titling program as Deputy Public Land Inspectors (DPLI).
The order also provides the following procedures in the deputation of DPLIs: a) submission of list of nominees and their corresponding qualifications by the LGU to the RED through the community environment and natural resources officer (CENRO) and provincial environment and natural resources officer (PENRO); b) the CENRO and the PENRO to conduct their respectivetive review of the list of nominees and then submit their respective recommendations within 15 days; and c) upon submission of the list and recommendations to the RED, the RED in turn will authorize the conduct of necessary training related to DPLIs’ functions, mandates, authorities, duties and responsibilities.
Paje said that the responsibilities and authority of the DPLI only apply in their respective cities and municipalities of their jurisdiction.
Under the Order, the composite land adjudication team has the following roles to play in the titling procedure: liaise with, orient and mobilize the community to participate in the LGU titling program; coordinate with barangay officials of the area under the titling program; process applications by undertaking adjudication activities such as conduct interviews of land titling applicants, conduct of ocular inspection, evaluation of land claims and the pieces of evidence presented; assistance in the amicable resolution of disputes, among others.
The DENR also has the following roles: assignment of land management officers (LMOs) from the CENROs, PENROs or DENR regional office concerned to the LGU initiated titling program and the titling office created; provide all the necessary and pertinent land records, surveys maps and other pertinent data; provide technical assistance in the conduct of surveys, land adjudication, training and capacity building on public land administration and management; and provide general control and supervision over the LGU titling program where the DENR field offices shall maintain approval and signing authorities in all phases of the patent application and adjudication process.
The land information office created under the Order will be responsible for the provision of accurate and updated land information to support real property taxation, land transactions, resource management, development and conservation, zoning and land use, infrastructure, disaster management and business process and investments. -30- PAO, DENR