Cebu City 2nd District Rep. Rodrigo Abellanosa expressed confidence Thursday (Oct. 15) that under the leadership of newly-installed House Speaker Lord Allan Velasco, the 299-man House of Representatives will immediately follow suit to the Senate in passing a measure seeking to authorize the President to expedite the processing and issuance of national and local permits, licenses, and certificates during times of national emergencies.
The main proponent of the bill in the Lower Chamber said the Senate’s passage of Senate Bill No. 1844 should prod the Lower Chamber to immediately act on his measure.
“Now, more than ever, it is necessary that these public services be conveniently obtainable while minimizing physical contact. We hope that with our new and more responsive House leadership, we will see this bill enacted into law at the soonest possible time,” he said in a Viber message.
Abellanosa thanked President Duterte for certifying the measure as urgent.
After receiving the presidential certification, the Senate on Wednesday unanimously approved on third and final reading SB 1844.
In his letter to Senate President Vicente Sotto III dated Oct. 14, Duterte cited the “necessity” to immediately enact SB No. 1844 “to facilitate economic activity, accelerate the socioeconomic recovery of the country and ensure the prompt delivery of public services in times of a national emergency such as the present COVID-19 pandemic.”
SB 1844 was authored by Sotto, Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph G. Recto, Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, and Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson.
Abellanosa said to ensure the immediate enactment of the measure into law, the House may adopt the version of the Senate.
“I am willing to adopt the Senate version to expedite the approval of the measure,” he said.
In a statement issued Wednesday, House Majority Leader and Leyte 1st District Rep. Martin Romualdez expressed the chamber’s commitment to pass the measure, which grants the President anti-red tape powers to accelerate the country’s socioeconomic recovery.
He said the House leadership is “in full agreement with the Chief Executive to fast-track the approval of all pending measures related to the anti-red tape and anti-corruption campaign of the government.”
Romualdez said the 299 members of the House are “readying a proposed law” that would grant the Chief Executive the authority to suspend the requirements for national and local permits, licenses and certifications, and to streamline and expedite the processing for the issuance of the same.