SPEAKER Alan Peter Cayetano yesterday clarified that the additional P1.6 billion funds of the House of Representatives for 2020 will be spent on research and improvement of the facilities of the Batasan building and not on additional offices.
This is contrary to the claim of Cavite Rep. Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino that the budget of the House is not enough because of the appointment of 22 Deputy Speakers.
Cayetano said he wanted the House of Representatives to be not just a place where lawmakers craft laws but a historical place where students can learn during their field trips.
“The P1.6 billion, first is to enhance research, hindi pwedeng nakikipagdebate tayo dito na yung industriya kumpleto sa research tapos tayo hindi. So we are going to strengthen the congressional planning and budget office,” Cayetano said.
“Another thing that the funds are for, to improve the facilities so that the House of Representatives is the House of the People. We want field trips to come here rather than the noontime show na lang. They learn something from noontime show but they can learn much more here if we make this facility pro-people,” he added.
The allocation for the House of Representatives for 2020 was increased by P1.6 billion.
Last week, Tolentino, chairman of the House Committee on Accounts, made a manifestation in the plenary asking for additional budget stating that higher expenses next year is expected due to the election of at least 22 deputy speakers.
From 14 the number of Deputy Speakers was increased during the time of Speaker Cayetano.
“Just to be sure that for 2020, all would be given to all employees, permanent, the contractuals, the increases, and other equipment and offices that will be needed,” Tolentino said.