COMPLIANCE ASSISTANCE CENTER
The main purpose of a Compliance Assistance Center (CAC) is to provide clear and consistent information for establishments like hog and poultry farms to understand environmental laws and regulations, and for them to be able to comply with these standards.
Although operated separately from the LLDA and the Environment Management Bureau of the Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR-EMB), the center serves to connect these authorities and the regulated business establishments.
Through a system of activities, tools, training and technical assistance, the CAC helps industries to initiate continuing improvements in their operations, in line with good production practices and environment-friendly solutions.
The center opens channels of communication and opportunities for dialogue. Through the CAC, hog and poultry farms can participate in analyzing problems in compliance to existing laws and regulations. It can also help to change the mindset and behavior of the enforcement staff, convincing them that the industries must also be assisted rather than simply forced to comply. All these can pave the way for increased trust and cooperation between the two parties.
In 2007 the LLDA established the pilot Compliance Assistance Centers (CACs) for two (2) priority sectors in the Laguna de Bay Region, namely Hog/Poultry Farms and Slaughterhouses, through a grant from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through Environmental Cooperation-Asia Program and Asian Environmental Compliance and Enforcement Network (AECEN). As designed, the CACs have both physical and virtual platforms. The Compliance Assistance Center Websites are the virtual platforms of the CACs. They were developed and piloted in 2007 under the earlier grant to LLDA. The two websites were jointly launched on April 29, 2008.
- Assist establishments in explaining applicable environmental laws, regulations and standards
- Clarify government (e.g., LLDA’s) policies, systems and procedures to facilitate compliance
- Identify applicable technologies for reducing pollution and suggest providers or suppliers of these technologies
- Provide copies of the required forms such as application forms for permits, self-monitoring forms and other documents
- Answer queries regarding compliance
- Provide updated information and recent developments in enforcement of and compliance on regulations
The two (2) Websites are the virtual platforms of the CACs and is used to promote the centers and their services for improved stakeholder engagement and environmental compliance. It is also a tool to update and improve the knowledge and understanding of the regulated establishments under the two target sectors with additional/updated information and resources as well as to expand the compliance promotion efforts for the slaughterhouse and hog farm industries in Laguna de Bay Region. As a virtual platform, the websites help in engaging more stakeholders in using the centers’ services for a comprehensive compliance assistance program for the targeted sectors. Initially started to serve the hog/poultry farms and slaughterhouses in the Laguna de Bay Region, the CAC Websites are accessible by other sector and non-sector audience nationwide, thereby contributing to the intended CAC replication and scale-up in the Laguna de Bay Region and beyond (through the DENR/EMB).
Using the CAC website as a tool for information updating/exchange and sharing of technologies and best practices and for further enhancement of the relationship of these two sectors with the Laguna de Bay Region’s stakeholders and the LLDA, among other benefits, it is best and to the advantage of LLDA that the hosting of the CAC websites which are being maintained and updated by the LLDA through the PPIMD-MIS be continued by the LLDA. When the time comes for the two CACs are full self-sustaining under the administration of the host institutions, the LLDA may devolve the hosting of the websites to them.