27 November 2021– Top officials of the Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA), along with their staff, led inspections in the local government unit (LGU) in Pangasinan province on Friday leading up to the launch of the cARTAravan.

Undersecretary Eduardo V. Bringas, Deputy Director General for Legal, and Chief of Staff and Undersecretary BGen. Carlos F. Quita, Ret., Deputy Director General for Finance, Administration, and Special Programs led the inspections at the LGUs of Rosales, Lingayen, and Dagupan.

The Authority also paid a courtesy call to the municipal mayor of Mangaldan and discussed some of ARTA’s initiatives that aim to improve the delivery of government services for the Filipino public.

The undersecretaries said all the LGUs have their Citizen’s Charters prominently displayed in their city halls and are generally compliant with the ease of doing business law. However, there are some that have yet to set up their eBOSS or only activate their eBOSS during business permit renewal season.

Representatives from each of the LGUs that ARTA visited welcomed the agency’s observations and pledged to improve its delivery of government services.

The regional inspections are part of ARTA’s cARTAravan, wherein the agency will visit the country’s regions to boost awareness on the agency’s ease of doing business and anti-red tape initiatives. Through this effort, which will be rolled out on Monday, 29 November 2021, the agency aims to go down to the grassroots level to inspire a whole-of-nation action against red tape.

The Authority will visit other LGUs in Regions I and II and the Cordillera Administrative Region ( CAR ) in the coming days. It will also inspect LGUs in the Visayas region next week and other regions next year.

ARTA came up with the initiative to widen its reach outside Metro Manila to ensure the compliance of all government agencies with Republic Act No. 11032 or the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018. This after finding out that the compliance rate for the said law nationwide is only at around 60 percent. Region I, however, was found to have a higher compliance rate at around 90 percent.

Some of the things that ARTA checks are the LGUs’ Citizen’s Charters, eBOSS, Public Assistance and Complaints Desk (PACD), and Committee on Anti-Red Tape (CART), among others.

Recently, the Office of the President issued Memorandum Circular No. 57, ordering national government agencies and LGUs to submit their updated Citizen’s Charter and set up their electronic business one-stop shops, both major provisions of R.A. 11032. Non-compliance may result in administrative sanctions, the issuance read.

Usec. Bringas said that the cARTAravan allows the Authority to practice its twin functions of enforcement and empowerment.

“This is part of our empowerment function. Instead of us doing the investigating, we give them the liberty and the chance to make sure that they are compliant with the ARTA law and the EODB,” he said. “Ganon ang proseso sa ARTA, nagtutulungan.”

Usec. Quita thanked the hundreds of volunteers from multi-sectoral groups and the private sector who have committed to joining ARTA’s cause, calling them “pressure groups” that can augment the agency’s forces that monitor erring agencies and officials.

On 16 November 2021, ARTA signed an MOU with 30 multi-sectoral groups that agreed to serve as ARTA volunteers. The Authority has also signed agreements with at least 10 private institutions that took on the mantle of becoming ARTA Champions, who are authorized to receive and refer red tape-related complaints.

ARTA will hold a volunteers’ assembly on Tuesday, 30 November 2021.

“Sila ang magiging katuwang, katulong namin sa pagkalap ng impormasyon at pagbibigay ng mga rekomendasyon sa mga ahensya ng gobyerno upang mapabuti ang kanilang mga serbisyo,” he said.

He also called on all government agencies, as well as all sectors of society, to coordinate with ARTA in implementing an orchestrated action against red tape and corruption.

“Alam namin na hindi kayang solusyonan ang problema ng red tape nang nag-iisa. Halimbawa, ARTA lang, hindi namin kaya. Pero kung sama-sama tayo, kaya natin,” Usec. Quita said.