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Bali Regents and Mayors Form Ranks to Resist Implementation of the 2009 RTRW Zoning Law.

Bali News: Bali, Indonesia, Zoning law, implementation, RTRW
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A meeting convened at the Tampaksiring Palace in Bali attended by the mayors, regents and the heads of regional planning agencies from across the island saw, once again, the regents declare that they were unprepared to implement the 2009 Zoning law (RTRW).

As reported by Radar Bali, the regent of Klungkung, Wayan Candra, complained that the new law was introduced without first obtaining the input of the respective regents. Said Candra”: “This is my style, to avoid confrontation. But, I am sorry, I can't implement this law.”

The regents of Karangasem, Wayan Geredeg, and Gianyar, Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardana Sukawati (Cok Ace), were even more forthright in rejecting the law. Geredeg claimed the new law was introduced without any socialization.

Gianyar’s regent, Cok Ace, claimed his region would suffer with the implementation of the new RTRW. He pointed to the presence of many hotels along river banks, ravines and beaches that would be declared illegal with the implementation of the new zoning law.

Also rejecting the law was the capital of Denpasar, represented at the meeting by the vice-mayor Jaya Negara. He cited the case of Serangan island where the rules requiring no building within a specified radius from major religious temples would mean that the island could have no local residents.

The vice-chairman of the Bali House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali), Ketut Suwandhi, took a more conciliatory view, reminding the meeting that the differences of opinion about the RTRW had prompted the legislature to establish a special commission to review the new law and hold public consultations. Suwandhi explained: “Bali has even obtained the attention of the Central government in this matter. Tomorrow (26 May) we have been invited to meet with the expert staff of the President.”

The meeting just held in Tampaksiring agreed that following the Jakarta meeting, another Bali meeting involving the governor, regents and mayors would be convened to discuss the RTRW.

The head of the Buleleng planning agency (Bappeda), Wayan Dharma, said the RTRW is preventing the development of their region and, for that reason, should be revised.

Meanwhile, Bali’s governor has been steadfast in his desire to firmly and finally introduce the RTRW, seeing the law as essential to preserving the cultural character or Bali. The governor has received widespread support from local communities and religious groups, despite opposition from regencies whose officials face criminal charges if proven to have abetted violations the new zoning law. Governor Pastika has also admonished the regents, reminding the that the law’s drafting underwent a lengthy consultative and legislative process before being passed into law and, as such, is legally immune from any revisions for a period of 5 years after its introduction.

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