A MINDANAO lawmaker has filed a proposed law seeking to extend the validity of the 2020 P4.1 trillion General Appropriations Act (GAA) until December 31, 2021.
Davao Oriental Rep. Mayo Almario filed House Bill (HB) 7645 to extend the life of this year’s national budget following the unprecedented coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) pandemic that resulted in temporary suspensions and delays in the implementation of many governmental programs, projects, and other activities to be funded out from the GAA of 2020.
Almario said all government infrastructure projects were halted for more or less an aggregate of three months due to governmental measures to curb the spread of the virus.
He said the aggregate three-month long hiatus of the national infrastructure program of the national government already comprises a quarter of 2020 – a significant amount of time to consider.
“In order to be proactive in this trying time of an impending and inevitable recession brought by the pandemic, and in order to fully utilize the allotted funds of the country, the extension of the GAA 2020 is sought,” Almario said.
“This measure will give the country the much needed economic boost in 2021 by providing more jobs in order to counterpoise the future restrictions under the new norm,” Almario added.
The 18th Congress had passed a bill that turned into law extending the validity of the maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE) and capital outlay (CO) of the 2019 P3.757 trillion national budget until December 2020.
This would ensure the continuity of President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte’s priority projects.