Duterte pay plan hailed

September 16, 2019
Rodrigo Duterte

THE House leadership hailed President Rodrigo Duterte’s plan to raise salaries of state workers, including teachers and nurses in the next three years.

“It shows the President’s sincere ‘malasakit’ to the plight of our state workers. We will work very hard to ensure funding for government workers’ salary increase,” said House Majority Leader and Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez, who chairs the House Committee on Rules, referring to the proposed Salary Standardization Law (SSL) 5.

Another House leader said that the Salary Standardization Law 5 will raise the salaries of the state workers, including the teachers and nurses, by 15 percent in the next three years.

Albay Rep. Joey Salceda, chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means, assured those in the bracket of Salary Grade 1 to 17 they will get higher increases.

While those in SG 18-33, including the President and congressmen, will receive lower increases.

Because of the inclusion of some P32 billion budget intended for salary adjustments, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) will submit to Congress a proposal for SSL 5.

According to Salceda, based on a study commissioned by DBM, the administration is set to spend P110 billion over three years for its civil servants including nurses and teachers.

“The 2020 budget provides for P32 billion in wage increase and P4 billion for miscellaneous benefits,” Salceda said.

Salceda added that the salary adjustments have been programmed within the organic capacity of the government and need no new taxes to underwrite it.

“The adjustments will preserve and somewhat improve the purchasing power of civil servants considering the consumer price inflation of 3.4 percent over the past three years (2016 - 1.8 percent, 3.2 percent - 2017 and 2018 - 5.2 percent),” said Salceda.

Once approved, more than one million government officials and employees will get a new round of salary increase starting next year.

The latest four-year compensation adjustment program gave a substantial increase to officials, starting from lower and mid-level bureaucrats up to the President.

Davao City Rep. Isidro Ungab, chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations, confirmed that the proposed P4.1-trillion national budget for next year, includes P32 billion for salary adjustments.

The President has repeatedly promised to increase the salary of teachers and nurses after he doubled the monthly pay of soldiers and policemen.