House justice panel OKs bills that will benefit judges, kin

Published November 19, 2019, 2:39 PM

by CJ Juntereal

By Charissa Luci-Atienza

The  House Committee on Justice approved yesterday bills seeking to provide  financial support and benefits  to  the surviving spouse and children of slain judges and justices, and to grant hazard pay to Regional Trial Court (RTC) judges.

The Joint Session of the Senate and the House of Representatives on the extension of Martial Law in Mindanao commences in the Plenary of the Batasang Pambansa on December 13, 2017. (ALVIN KASIBAN / MANILA BULLETIN)
(MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

The House panel approved House Bills 3995 and 4150, which grant benefits to the surviving heirs of judiciary members who are killed intentionally while in the performance of their duties. The bills were principally authored by Pangasinan Rep. Tyrone Agabas, and Aklan Rep. Teodorico Haresco, respectively.

“Judges and justices have become victims of injustices,” Veloso said, citing the need to grant assistance to the surviving spouse and children of slain judges.

It was Deputy Speaker and Misamis Occidental Rep. Henry Oaminal who moved for approval of the measures. The House leader even noted that the bill was already approved on third and final reading during the previous 17th Congress.

Agabas, one of the principal authors of the bill, cited the need to amend Section 2 of Republic Act 910 for the inclusion of surviving spouse and children in the provision of financial support and other benefits.

“The threat to the life and limb of judiciary officials cannot be discounted as in fact it is increasing. While, no amount of money can replace the lives of judiciary officials  who are killed in the line of duty, or while in service, it is but just right to provide a benefit mechanism to secure the surviving spouse or children of slain judges and justices,” he said.

He said the bill will largely compensate the long years of sacrifices of judges and justices in the judiciary.

“In the same vein, it will encourage the entry of legal practitioners in the judiciary knowing full well that they are adequately protected by the government they serve,” Agabas, a lawyer, added.

For his part, Haresco said the bill will “somehow balance the risk” that judges take when they perform their duties and responsibilities.

“This will further strengthen the members of the judiciary to work without fear and also encourage idealistic lawyers to join the judiciary,” he said.

“We owe it to our country and to our people to have the kind of climate not of fear, but of confidence, to be able to ensure that we can prevail as society that is democratic, that is equal, and that is pro-people,” he pointed out.

Both bills provide that when a justice or judge is killed by reason of the performance of official duty, or when such justice or judge is killed intentionally while in service, regardless of age at the time of death or the number of years served in government or the judiciary, the surviving spouse and the surviving children of the slain justice or judge shall also be entitled to receive during the residue of their natural lives also in the manner hereinafter provided, the salary plus the highest monthly aggregate of transportation, representation and other allowances such as personal economic relief allowance (PERA) and additional compensation allowance which are received by an associate justice of the Supreme Court.

Under the bills, if the justice or judge is killed by reason of the performance of official duty, the surviving spouse and children of the slain justice or judge shall receive all the benefits, plus a gratuity equivalent to ten years salary, lump sum, to be computed based on all the salaries and other benefits of an associate justice of the Supreme Court.

“Upon the death of the surviving spouse, the benefits such spouse was receiving shall be transferred to the surviving children of the slain justice or judge,” the bills stressed.

The bills provide that if the surviving spouse and children of a slain justice or judge have not received the full lump sum due them within one year from the death of the justice or judge, any lump sum still to be granted to the surviving spouse or surviving children of the slain justice or judge shall be computed based on the difference between the amounts already received and the 10-year lump sum based on the current rates of salaries, benefits, allowances and other grants given to an associate justice of the Supreme Court.

During the panel hearing, the panel decided to consolidate the two measures and directed the Committee Secretariat to prepare the committee report to endorse the consolidated bill for plenary deliberation and approval.

The Veloso panel also approved yesterday the four measures– House Bills 597, 1603, 2327 and 2716–granting hazard pay to RTC judges.

The bills were authored by Reps. Lorna Silverio (Bulacan), Precious Hipolito-Castelo (Quezon City), Peter Gonzaga  (Compostella Valley) and Deputy Speaker and Sorsogon Rep. Evelina Escudero.

The panel decided that the hazard pay shall be equivalent to at least 25 percent of the monthly basic salary of the RTC judges, following the motion made by Gonzaga.

“The guarantee of adequate salaries and the granting of hazard pay to RTC judges is but a small measure aimed not only to protect the judges’ personal independence but also meant as a recognition on their contribution to nation building,” Gonzaga said.

 
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House justice panel OKs bills that will benefit judges, kin

Published November 19, 2019, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Charissa Luci-Atienza

The  House Committee on Justice approved yesterday bills seeking to provide  financial support and benefits  to  the surviving spouse and children of slain judges and justices, and to grant hazard pay to Regional Trial Court (RTC) judges.

The Joint Session of the Senate and the House of Representatives on the extension of Martial Law in Mindanao commences in the Plenary of the Batasang Pambansa on December 13, 2017. (ALVIN KASIBAN / MANILA BULLETIN)
(MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

The House panel approved House Bills 3995 and 4150, which grant benefits to the surviving heirs of judiciary members who are killed intentionally while in the performance of their duties. The bills were principally authored by Pangasinan Rep. Tyrone Agabas, and Aklan Rep. Teodorico Haresco, respectively.

“Judges and justices have become victims of injustices,” Veloso said, citing the need to grant assistance to the surviving spouse and children of slain judges.

It was Deputy Speaker and Misamis Occidental Rep. Henry Oaminal who moved for approval of the measures. The House leader even noted that the bill was already approved on third and final reading during the previous 17th Congress.

Agabas, one of the principal authors of the bill, cited the need to amend Section 2 of Republic Act 910 for the inclusion of surviving spouse and children in the provision of financial support and other benefits.

“The threat to the life and limb of judiciary officials cannot be discounted as in fact it is increasing. While, no amount of money can replace the lives of judiciary officials  who are killed in the line of duty, or while in service, it is but just right to provide a benefit mechanism to secure the surviving spouse or children of slain judges and justices,” he said.

He said the bill will largely compensate the long years of sacrifices of judges and justices in the judiciary.

“In the same vein, it will encourage the entry of legal practitioners in the judiciary knowing full well that they are adequately protected by the government they serve,” Agabas, a lawyer, added.

For his part, Haresco said the bill will “somehow balance the risk” that judges take when they perform their duties and responsibilities.

“This will further strengthen the members of the judiciary to work without fear and also encourage idealistic lawyers to join the judiciary,” he said.

“We owe it to our country and to our people to have the kind of climate not of fear, but of confidence, to be able to ensure that we can prevail as society that is democratic, that is equal, and that is pro-people,” he pointed out.

Both bills provide that when a justice or judge is killed by reason of the performance of official duty, or when such justice or judge is killed intentionally while in service, regardless of age at the time of death or the number of years served in government or the judiciary, the surviving spouse and the surviving children of the slain justice or judge shall also be entitled to receive during the residue of their natural lives also in the manner hereinafter provided, the salary plus the highest monthly aggregate of transportation, representation and other allowances such as personal economic relief allowance (PERA) and additional compensation allowance which are received by an associate justice of the Supreme Court.

Under the bills, if the justice or judge is killed by reason of the performance of official duty, the surviving spouse and children of the slain justice or judge shall receive all the benefits, plus a gratuity equivalent to ten years salary, lump sum, to be computed based on all the salaries and other benefits of an associate justice of the Supreme Court.

“Upon the death of the surviving spouse, the benefits such spouse was receiving shall be transferred to the surviving children of the slain justice or judge,” the bills stressed.

The bills provide that if the surviving spouse and children of a slain justice or judge have not received the full lump sum due them within one year from the death of the justice or judge, any lump sum still to be granted to the surviving spouse or surviving children of the slain justice or judge shall be computed based on the difference between the amounts already received and the 10-year lump sum based on the current rates of salaries, benefits, allowances and other grants given to an associate justice of the Supreme Court.

During the panel hearing, the panel decided to consolidate the two measures and directed the Committee Secretariat to prepare the committee report to endorse the consolidated bill for plenary deliberation and approval.

The Veloso panel also approved yesterday the four measures– House Bills 597, 1603, 2327 and 2716–granting hazard pay to RTC judges.

The bills were authored by Reps. Lorna Silverio (Bulacan), Precious Hipolito-Castelo (Quezon City), Peter Gonzaga  (Compostella Valley) and Deputy Speaker and Sorsogon Rep. Evelina Escudero.

The panel decided that the hazard pay shall be equivalent to at least 25 percent of the monthly basic salary of the RTC judges, following the motion made by Gonzaga.

“The guarantee of adequate salaries and the granting of hazard pay to RTC judges is but a small measure aimed not only to protect the judges’ personal independence but also meant as a recognition on their contribution to nation building,” Gonzaga said.

 
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