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3. City Government of QC v.

Ericta
G.R. No. L-34915| 24 June 1983 | Gutierrez, Jr., J.
Aggy | TOPIC: State’s Police Power

Doctrine:
Police power is usually exercised in the form of mere regulation or restriction. It does not involve the taking of
property with the exception of a few cases where there is a necessity to confiscate the private property in order
to destroy it for the purpose of protecting the general welfare.

Facts:
1. The Quezon City Council passed Ordinance No. 6118 which provided for the regulation of private
cemeteries within the jurisdiction of Quezon City.
a. Sec. 9 of said Ordinance provide that at least 6% of the total area of the memorial park
cemetery be set aside for charity burial of deceased persons who are paupers and have been
residents of QC for at least 5 years prior to their death.
2. For several years, said ordinance was not enforced by the city. It was only until 7 years after that the
city council passed a resolution ordering the City Engineer to stop from further
selling/transacting with any private memorial parks where the owner failed to “donate” the
required 6% area.
3. City Engineer, then, notified Himlayang Pilipino, Inc. (respondent) that Sec. 9 of the ordinance will be
enforced.
4. Himlayang Pilipino filed a petition with the Court of First Instance seeking to annul Section 9 of the
ordinance because it outright confiscates his property, and under the police power, property is
generally not taken away, but instead summarily destroyed in order to promote the general welfare.
a. QC argues that the taking of property is a valid exercise of its police power. It relies on the
“general welfare” clause.
b. CFI declared Section 9 null and void.

Issue:
W/N section 9 of Ordinance No. 6118 is a valid exercise of the city’s police power? – No. Section 9 is
not a mere regulation but an outright confiscation of property.

Holding:
The challenged provision is not a mere regulation but an outright confiscation of property. Police power
is usually exercised in the form of mere regulation or restriction. It does not involve the taking of property
with the exception of a few cases where there is a necessity to confiscate the private property in order to
destroy it for the purpose of protecting the general welfare. Instead of building public cemeteries, the city
passes the burden to private cemeteries.

There is no reasonable relation between the promotion of general welfare and the requirement of setting
aside 6% percent of the total area of private cemeteries. (TEST OF POLICE POWER VALIDITY: LEGIT
STATE INTEREST PLUS REASONABLY CONNECTED MEANS) What the ordinance does is it takes
away property without any just compensation. Also, SC noted that Himlayang Pilipino received its permits
and licenses prior to the passing of the said ordinance. (it should not be retroactive)

Ruling:
Petition is dismissed. CFI decision is affirmed.

Relevant Provisions: