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CARL Outline
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    1   THE COMPREHENSIVE AGRARIAN REFORM LAW Republic Act No. 6657 , as amended  I. Introduction   A. Constitutional Basis  1. Article II, Section 21 : The State shall promote comprehensive rural development and agrarian reform. 2. Article XII, Section 1 : x x x The State shall promote industrialization and full employment based on sound agricultural development and agrarian reform, x x x 3. Article XIII, Section 3 : x x x The State shall regulate the relations between workers and employers, recognizing the right of labor to its just share in the fruits of production and the right of enterprises to reasonable returns on investments, and to expansion and growth. 4. Article XIII, Section 4 : The State shall, by law, undertake an agrarian reform program founded on the rights of farmers and regular farmworkers, who are landless, to own directly or collectively the lands they till or, in the case of other farmworkers, to receive a just share of the fruits thereof. To this end, the State shall encourage and undertake the just distribution of all agricultural lands, subject to such priorities and reasonable retention limits as the Congress may prescribe, taking into account ecological, developmental, or equity considerations, and subject to the payment of just compensation. In determining retention limits, the State shall respect the right of small landowners. The State shall further provide incentives for voluntary land-sharing. 5. Article XIII, Section 5 : The State shall recognize the rights of farmers, farmworkers, and landowners, as well as cooperatives, and other independent farmers' organizations to participate in the planning, organization, and management of the program, and shall provide support to agriculture through appropriate technology and research, and adequate financial, production, marketing, and other support services. 6. Article XIII, Section 6 : The State shall apply the principles of agrarian reform or stewardship, whenever applicable in accordance with law, in the disposition or utilization of other natural resources, including lands of the public domain under lease or concession suitable to agriculture, subject to prior rights, homestead rights of small settlers, and the rights of indigenous communities to their ancestral lands. The State may resettle landless farmers and farmworkers in its own agriculture estates which shall be distributed to them in the manner provided by law. 7. Article XIII, Section 8 : The State shall provide incentives to landowners to invest the proceeds of the agrarian reform program to promote industrialization, employment creating, and privatization of public sector enterprises. Financial instruments used as payment for their lands shall be honored as equity in enterprises of their choice. B. Declaration of Principles and Policies  [Section 2] It is the policy of the State to pursue a Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP). The welfare of the landless farmers and farmworkers will receive the highest consideration to promote social justice and to move the nation toward sound rural development    2   and industrialization, and the establishment of owner cultivatorship of economic-size farms as the basis of Philippine agriculture. The State shall promote industrialization and full employment based on sound agricultural development and agrarian reform, through industries that make full and efficient use of human and natural resources, and which are competitive in both domestic and foreign markets: Provided, That the conversion of agricultural lands into industrial, commercial or residential lands shall take into account, tillers' rights and national food security. Further, the State shall protect Filipino enterprises against unfair foreign competition and trade practices. The State recognizes that there is not enough agricultural land to be divided and distributed to each farmer and regular farmworker so that each one can own his/her economic-size family farm. This being the case, a meaningful agrarian reform program to uplift the lives and economic status of the farmer and his/her children can only be achieved through simultaneous industrialization aimed at developing a self-reliant and independent national economy effectively controlled by Filipinos. To this end, the State may, in the interest of national welfare or defense, establish and operate vital industries.  A more equitable distribution and ownership of land, with due regard to the rights of landowners to just compensation, retention rights under Section 6 of Republic Act No. 6657, as amended, and to the ecological needs of the nation, shall be undertaken to provide farmers and farmworkers with the opportunity to enhance their dignity and improve the quality of their lives through greater productivity of agricultural lands. The agrarian reform program is founded on the right of farmers and regular farmworkers, who are landless, to own directly or collectively the lands they till or, in the case of other farmworkers, to receive a  just share of the fruits thereof. To this end, the State shall encourage and undertake the just distribution of all agricultural lands, subject to the priorities and retention limits set forth in this Act, taking into account ecological, developmental, and equity considerations, and subject to the payment of just compensation. The State shall respect the right of small landowners, and shall provide incentive for voluntary land-sharing.  As much as practicable, the implementation of the program shall be community-based to assure, among others, that the farmers shall have greater control of farmgate prices, and easier access to credit. The State shall recognize the right of farmers, farmworkers and landowners, as well as cooperatives and other independent farmers' organizations, to participate in the planning, organization, and management of the program, and shall provide support to agriculture through appropriate technology and research, and adequate financial, production, marketing and other support services. The State shall recognize and enforce, consistent with existing laws, the rights of rural women to own and control land, taking into consideration the substantive equality between men and women as qualified beneficiaries, to receive a just share of the fruits thereof, and to be represented in advisory or appropriate decision-making bodies. These rights shall be independent of their male relatives and of their civil status. The State shall apply the principles of agrarian reform, or stewardship, whenever applicable, in accordance with law, in the disposition or utilization of other natural resources, including lands of the public domain, under lease or concession, suitable to agriculture, subject to prior rights, homestead rights of small settlers and the rights of indigenous communities to their ancestral lands.    page - 3 -   The State may resettle landless farmers and farm workers in its own agricultural estates, which shall be distributed to them in the manner provided by law. By means of appropriate incentives, the State shall encourage the formation and maintenance of economic-size family farms to be constituted by individual beneficiaries and small landowners. The State shall protect the rights of subsistence fishermen, especially of local communities, to the preferential use of communal marine and fishing resources, both inland and offshore. It shall provide support to such fishermen through appropriate technology and research, adequate financial, production and marketing assistance and other services. The State shall also protect, develop and conserve such resources. The protection shall extend to offshore fishing grounds of subsistence fishermen against foreign intrusion. Fishworkers shall receive a just share from their labor in the utilization of marine and fishing resources. The State shall be guided by the principles that land has a social function and land ownership has a social responsibility. Owners of agricultural land have the obligation to cultivate directly or through labor administration the lands they own and thereby make the land productive. The State shall provide incentives to landowners to invest the proceeds of the agrarian reform program to promote industrialization, employment and privatization of public sector enterprises. Financial instruments used as payment for lands shall contain features that shall enhance negotiability and acceptability in the marketplace. The State may lease undeveloped lands of the public domain to qualified entities for the development of capital-intensive farms, and traditional and pioneering crops especially those for exports subject to the prior rights of the beneficiaries under this Act. C. Definition of Agrarian Reform  1. Agrarian Reform means the redistribution of lands, regardless of crops or fruits produced, to farmers and regular farmworkers who are landless, irrespective of tenurial arrangement, to include the totality of factors and support services designed to lift the economic status of the beneficiaries and all other arrangement alternative to the physical redistribution of lands, such as production or profit-sharing, labor administration, and the distribution of stock, which will allow beneficiaries to receive a just share of the fruits of the lands they work. [Section 3(a) of RA 6657] 2. Distinguished from Land Reform * Land Reform is the physical redistribution of land such as the program under Presidential Decree No. 27. Agrarian reform means the redistribution of lands including the totality of factors and support services designed to lift the economic status of the beneficiaries. Thus, agrarian reform is broader than land reform. D. RA 6657 is Constitutional      page - 4 -   In the case of Association of Small Landowners in the Philippines, Inc. v. Secretary of  Agrarian Reform, 1  the Supreme Court held: The case before us presents no knotty complication insofar as the question of compensable taking is concerned. To the extent that the measures under challenge merely prescribe retention limits for landowners, there is an exercise of the police power for the regulation of private property in accordance with the Constitution. But where, to carry out such regulation, it becomes necessary to deprive such owners of whatever lands they may own in excess of the maximum area allowed, there is definitely a taking under the power of eminent domain for which payment of just compensation is imperative. The taking contemplated is not a mere limitation of the use of the land. What is required is the surrender of the title to and the physical possession of the said excess and all beneficial rights accruing to the owner in favor of the farmer-beneficiary. This is definitely an exercise not of the police power but of the power of eminent domain. Classification has been defined as the grouping of persons or things similar to each other in certain particulars and different from each other in these same particulars. To be valid, it must conform to the following requirements: (1) it must be based on substantial distinctions; (2) it must be germane to the purpose of the law; (3) it must not be limited to existing conditions only; and (4) it must apply equally to all the members of the class. The Court finds that all these requisites have been met by the measures here challenged as arbitrary and discriminatory. Equal protection simply means that all persons or things similarly situated must be treated alike both as to the rights conferred and the liabilities imposed. The petitioner have not shown that they belong to a different class and entitled to a different treatment. The argument that not only landowners but also owners of other properties must be made to share the burden of implementing land reform must be rejected. There is a substantial distinction between these two classes of owners that is clearly visible except to those who will not see. There is no need to elaborate on this matter. In any event, the Congress is allowed a wide leeway in providing for a valid classification. Its decision is accorded recognition and respect by the courts of justice except only where its discretion is abused to the detriment of the Bill of Rights. It is worth remarking at this juncture that a statute may be sustained under the police power only if there is a concurrence of the lawful subject and the lawful method. Put otherwise, the interests of the public generally as distinguished from those of a particular class require the interference of the State and, no less important, the means employed are reasonably necessary for the attainment of the purpose sought to be achieved and not unduly oppressive upon individuals. As the subject and purpose of agrarian reform have been laid down by the Constitution itself, we may say that the first requirement has been satisfied. What remains to be examined is the validity of the method employed to achieve the Constitutional goal. Eminent domain is an inherent power of the State that enable it to forcibly acquire private lands intended for public use upon payment of just compensation to the owner. Obviously, there is no need to expropriate where the owner is willing to sell under terms also acceptable to the purchaser, in which case an ordinary deed of sale may be agreed upon by the parties. It is only where the owner is unwilling to sell, or cannot accept the price or other conditions offered by the vendee, that the power of eminent domain will come into play to assert the paramount authority of the State over the interest of the property owner. Private rights must then yield to the irresistible demands of the public interest on the time-honored justification, as in the case of the police power, that the welfare of the people is the supreme law. 1  175 SCRA 343.
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