An Act Establishing and Regulating Trading Systems in the Provinces of Palawan, Mindoro, and Batanes
Act No. 2551

January 25, 1916

ACT NO. 2551


SECTION 1. The Provinces of Palawan, Mindoro, and Batanes may each establish a system of trading stores or exchanges to be known as the trading system, to facilitate the production and sale of the products of local agriculture and industry or their exchange for needed merchandise, and to extend the commercial relations of the non-Christian tribes with Christian peoples. There may be operated in connection therewith public markets, stores, workshops, transportation lines and such other public utilities as may be helpful in carrying on the said trading system, or promoting the general welfare in the said provinces.

SECTION 2. The capital fund for the operation of a trading system shall be appropriated by the provincial board with the approval of the Secretary of the Interior and with like approval the provincial board may revert to the unappropriated fund from which derived, all or any portions of said capital fund when no longer needed for said purpose: Provided, That the funds now being employed in the existing trading systems or exchanges in said provinces are hereby made available for appropriation by the provincial boards in the manner and for the purpose herein specified, to the end that there shall be no interruption in the business of said trading systems or exchanges. Surplus profits of the trading system shall at the end of each fiscal year revert to the unappropriated fund from which the capital fund was derived, unless the provincial board shall, with the approval of the Secretary of the Interior, make specific appropriation thereof as an addition to the capital fund. Such restrictions shall be imposed as to incurring indebtedness and extending credit to individuals as the Secretary of the Interior upon recommendation of the Insular Auditor may require. Purchases of goods for the trading system may be made either locally or otherwise without the intervention of the Bureau of Supply or any similar agency, and when so made no surcharge of a Government purchasing agency shall apply thereon. Products purchased by the trading system may be sold either locally or otherwise without the intervention of the Sales Agency or any similar organization that may be created.

SECTION 3. The Secretary of the Interior may appoint in each province or subprovince an exchange officer or officers or designate any other officer or employee of the Government, the consent of the respective head of Department in any such case having previously been had, to assume the duties of an exchange officer, with or without additional compensation to be fixed by the provincial board, with the approval of the Secretary of the Interior. The duties of such exchange officer shall be to determine the kinds of merchandise and products to be dealt in by the trading system, fix the selling and purchase prices, and supervise the purchase and sale thereof, respectively, and perform such other duties, not pertaining to accountability, as the Secretary of the Interior may require: Provided, That the exchange officer shall give immediate advice to the provincial treasurer of any goods ordered for future delivery and payment: And provided further, That in the absence of an exchange officer duly appointed or designated to act by the Secretary of the Interior, the duties of said officer, in so far as they may pertain to the conduct and management of the trading system, shall be performed by the provincial treasurer. An exchange officer or officers, who are not Government employees shall be paid from trading system funds or from provincial funds subject to reimbursement out of trading system funds, such salary as the provincial board shall fix and the Secretary of the Interior approve. The exchange officer shall be deemed a bonded officer within the meaning of section six of Act Numbered Twenty-four hundred and thirty-six. EHCDSI

SECTION 4. Upon recommendation of the exchange officer, the provincial treasurer shall appoint all other employees of the trading system, the positions therefor being first authorized by the provincial board with the approval of the Secretary of the Interior. Their salaries and traveling expenses shall be paid from trading system funds: Provided, That an equitable portion of the salary and traveling expenses of any regularly appointed Insular or provincial officer or employee who may be required to render service for the trading system in connection with his regular duties, may, with the approval of the Secretary of the Interior, be reimbursed from trading system funds: And provided further, That any employee appointed as aforesaid may be bonded under the fidelity fund, whenever in the judgment of the provincial treasurer the public interest shall so require.

SECTION 5. The provincial treasurer shall be accountable for the funds and property of the trading system including its branches or any commercial project operated therewith, and shall keep the books of account and records thereof as the Insular Auditor shall prescribe.

SECTION 6. In all matters pertaining to accountability the bonded employees provided for in section four shall be deemed subordinates of said provincial treasurer, nor shall any bonded employee be retained, if that officer shall certify that he is incompetent or unsuited for the position which he holds. Said treasurer shall have access to the books of account and records of the system at all times, and any bonded employee may be suspended by him for the causes hereinafter specified, namely:

(a) Failure to render a report within the time and in the manner prescribed.

(b) Persistent failure to keep accounts and records prescribed.

(c) Failure to produce forthwith any funds or property of the system for inventory or inspection.

In case of suspension the said treasurer may, in person or by deputy, take into his custody all funds or property of the system in the hands of such employee, and in like manner, may perform or administer the duties appertaining to the position or employment until such disability is removed or a successor for said suspended employee is duly chosen and qualified: Provided, That this authority granted to the said treasurer shall not be construed to modify or abrogate any existing administrative authority.

SECTION 7. All Acts or parts of Acts inconsistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed.

SECTION 8. The public good requiring the speedy enactment of this bill, the same shall take effect on its passage, in accordance with the provisions of section one of Act Numbered Nineteen hundred and forty-five of the Philippine Legislature.

Enacted, January 25, 1916.