LINGAYEN—As the provincial government pursues the Casa Real restoration project, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan approved last week Provincial Resolution No. 1487-2012 giving Governor Amado Espino Jr. the authority to apply for a special patent title for the historic building.
Provincial Chief Tourism Officer Malu Elduayan said her office, in cooperation with 2nd District Rep. Leopoldo Bataoil and the SP, “have requested the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) for the allocation of the budget for its restoration.”
The SP resolution is in line with one of the requirements of TIEZA, which a certificate of title or ownership of the property.
Board Member Angel Baniqued explained that the land area stated in the tax declaration first needs to be consistent with the data in the cadastral survey.
The Cadastral Survey done in 1967 by a private company commissioned by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Bureau of Lands (BL) through Engr. Noel Delos Santos of the Provincial Assessor’s Office states that the land area of the property is 12,425 square meters but the tax declarations indicates that the land area is 16,537 square meters.
“It is easier to get a patent than a land registration,” Baniqued said.
As for the issue of ownership, an official from the Provincial Engineering Office said that based on the oldest tax declaration in possession of the provincial government dated 1957, the Pangasinan government is the owner of Casa Real, which used to be called Old Presidencia.
Elduayan added, “The National Historical Commission of the Philippines has declared the building as an important cultural property of the province of Pangasinan.”
Further, on March 13, 2002, Casa Real was declared as a National Historical Landmark by the National Historical Institute.
Casa Real, built during the Spanish regime and served as the first provincial seat of government, is now being envisioned to be a provincial museum that will hold cultural and historical artifacts of the province.– Johanne R. Macob