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Hundred of Villas Violate Bali's Zoning Regulations.

Legislator Calls for Errant Villas to be Demolished.

(5/18/2009) According to NusaBali, Commission B of the Bali House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali) believes that hundreds of villas in the Badung regency violate zoning (RTRW) regulations. Chief among the violations are a complete lack of building permits and a failure to contribute Hotel and Restaurant Tax Revenues.

DPRD-Bali members sat the government has suffered "tens of billions of rupiah" in losses. That figure is based on the assumption that in order to process building and operating licenses the government will be paid Rp. 10 million (US$900) for every 2 are (200 square meters) of land involved. Thus, if the average villa covers 12 are then government stands to earn Rp. 60 million from each villa's legal registration. Extrapolating further, if 100 villas are involved, the total loss in revenue to Bali approaches Rp. 60 billion (US$5.5 million).

According to I Wayan Puspanegara of Commission B of the DPRD-Bali: "Most violators are located in Mengwi, North Kuta, Kuta and South Kuta. The loss of revenues is substantial. If we are going to be truly firm in enforcing the law, these illegal villas should be demolished."

These estimates of losses suffered from administrative fees for permits do not yet include loss tax revenues which could he claims could be as high as Rp. 30 billion (US$2.75 million) per villa.

Separately, Puspanegara called on the government to knock down any villas found to be in violation of zoning laws, such as set back laws from shores and ravines at Pecatu.

Puspanegara told the press that if villas were granted permits that allowed them to violate zoning regulations then those who issued such permits can be prosecuted and be imprisoned for up to 15 years and fined Rp. 5 billion (US$450,00).

Puspanegara told the press his Commission will soon launch surprise inspections against villas suspected to be in violation of the RTRW, focusing on those in the Bukit Kuta Selatan of Jimbaran up to and including Pecatu.

Puspanegara continued: "We hope that the government will take the correct steps. If a building has no permit it must be demolished. The laws of the Center form the basis of provincial regulations. In accordance with our duties, our focus will be on building violations- such as set back rules from ravines, beaches and alike."

The legislator reminded the press that a recent case of an illegal villa has reignited the permit debate. On Sunday, May 3, 2009, local citizens marched on a project located behind the Rocky Bungalow in Banjar Suluban in the village of Pecatu, South Kuta. Villagers marched on the Dugong Villa. Believed to be owned by an Italian, when the owner refused to address complaints of littering of building materials and the dumping of sewage and waste materials into the ocean. Moreover, in violating zoning laws by building at the edge of a cliff, the project is claimed to have closed off an important sacred water source used by villagers in religious ceremonies.

After zoning office officials visited the project in question, they discovered it held no building permit and requested its immediate destruction. Zoning officials did, however, indicate that the owner of the project has asked for more time to allow the necessary permits to be secured.