A SENATOR has filed a bill fixing parking rates in all commercial and business establishments, institutions, and parking facilities in the country.

“While we respect businesses that help our economy grow, we also need to balance and protect the interests of the majority,” Senator Ramon B. Revilla, Jr. said in a statement in Filipino on Tuesday. “It’s only right that we regulate the parking fees that, sometimes, are no longer fair.”

Under Senate Bill 1463, parking rates in malls, supermarkets, restaurants, hotels, hospitals, schools and dedicated parking facilities will amount to P20 for all cars in the first three hours, plus P5 for every succeeding hour. Parking fees for motorcycles is P10 plus P2 for each extra hour.

The flat rate for overnight parking will be P100 for all cars and P50 for motorcycles. For valet service, the flat rate will be P100.

There will be additional parking fees for lost or damaged parking tickets at P100 and parking cards at P200.

The bill also allows customers to pass through and park for at most fifteen minutes for free. Customers who spend at least P500 in an establishment will get free parking for three hours.

“Sometimes, the income of our countrymen is only meager, then it will be reduced even further because of very expensive parking fees in workplaces,” Mr. Revilla said.

“It could also be that instead of being able to add to their budget for groceries, they end up paying expensive parking fees at the market or mall,” he added. “We should really pass this bill so that we can help consumers.”

He said some parking spaces, especially those in the central business districts, charge “exorbitant fees” that reach P400 for eight hours. This already covers a large portion of a worker’s daily wage.

“A bill to regulate the payment of parking spaces like malls, restaurants and other places has been pending in Congress for several years,” Mr. Revilla said. “Honestly, it should have been enacted a long time ago.”

“So now, we will really push for its passage in Congress, especially since it will heavily reduce the expenses of ordinary citizens,” he added. — Alyssa Nicole O. Tan