Budget okay top Senate priority

November 02, 2019

SENATE Majority Leader Migz Zubiri said the passage of the 2020 National Government Budget will be “at the topmost of our priorities when we resume our First Regular Session of the 18th Congress next week.”

“The Senate Finance Committee will definitely be busy conducting marathon hearings on the proposed P4.1 trillion National Government budget for next year.

Congress is set to resume session after a one-month recess to tackle the 2020 Budget and other priority measures.

“First and foremost, we want to ensure the timely passage of the 2020 proposed General Appropriations Bill (GAB),” Zubiri said.

The Senate Finance Committee will conduct marathon hearings.

“We had experienced difficulties when we failed to pass the 2019 Budget on time. We had a re-enacted budget for the first Semester of this year forcing National Government agencies to compress their timelines. Consequently, many important programs and projects for the benefit of our people were delayed,” Zubiri said.

Before its adjournment, the Senate passed Senate Resolution No. 154 authorizing all committees to conduct hearings, meetings and consultations during the recess to have continuity in the process of passing pending proposed legislations.

Aside from next year’s budget, the Senate is also expected to finish Plenary debates on eight measures which have been approved at the Committee level and are pending second reading approval.

These bills include the Grant of Night Shift Differential Pay for Government Employees including Government-Owned and -Controlled Corporations (Senate Bill No. 643), Separate Facility for Prisoners Convicted of Heinous Crimes (SBN 1055), Increasing Excise Taxes on Alcohol Products, Heated Tobacco and Vapor Products (SBN 1074), Creation of Malasakit Centers in all Department of Health Hospitals (SBN 1076), Creation of a National Transportation Safety Board (SBN 1077), Amendments to the Anti-Terrorism Act (SBN 1083), Creation of the Philippine High School for Sports in New Clark City, Capas, Tarlac (SBN 1086) and Grant of Teaching Supplies Allowance for Public School Teachers (SBN 1092).