House readies ₱247-B Bayanihan 3

Published November 23, 2020, 10:00 PM

by Ben Rosario

Measure to address emergency response and economic recovery


Another bill proposing Part III to the highly successful implementation of the Bayanihan to Heal As One Act has been filed in the House of Representatives, with its authors providing for a ₱247 billion funding to help the country “rebuild as one.”

MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO

Majority Leader and Leyte Rep. Ferdinand Martin Romualdez and Albay Rep. Joey Sarte Salceda are among the authors of House Bill 8059 or the Bayanihan to Rebuild as One Act.

Two versions of Bayanihan 3 have already been submitted in the Lower House before the filing of HB 8059.

Salceda, chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means, said the ₱247-billion proposed allocation will finance emergency response and economic recovery programs included in the measure.

Salceda explained that the interventions are made primarily to ensure that national and local government units can mobilize “robust response and recovery programs” in the face of recent typhoons and slower than expected recovery in the third quarter of the year.

“I made it clear to the economic managers that if we recover more quickly than expected in the 3rd quarter, a third Bayanihan may no longer be necessary. Seeing as it is that the economy did not recover as quickly as expected in the past quarter, and given the recent spate of typhoons, we need to provide emergency aid,” Salceda said.

HB 8059 contains provisions that are placed in three sections dealing on health, regulatory, and economic interventions.

₱20-B for vaccines

Under the bill a ₱20-billion allocation has been proposed for the procurement of vaccines, the creation of a vaccine committee and guarantees for sufficient health supplies.

Also included are Salceda’s “pet interventions” to provide for rental housing relief, an eviction moratorium, condonation of agrarian reform loans, small business regulatory relief, and credit mediation and refinancing assistance.

“You will see that my contribution here is primarily the structural credit interventions. We have already introduced around ₱1.9 trillion in new liquidity due to monetary policies. But credit uptake is still low. Part of it is due to demand. But part of it is due to the structural defects of usual loan products. That’s why the state has to come in and create more favorable loan structures,” Salceda explained.

Other financial provisions:

• ₱40 billion local government support for calamity response
• ₱100 billion in health and resiliency related infrastructure program
• ₱10 billion assistance for agriculture and fisheries
• ₱10 billion loan facility for companies requiring help in paying 13th month benefits
• ₱10 billion for Tulong para sa Displaced Workers (TUPAD)
• ₱10 billion for COVID Assistance Measure Program
• ₱10 billion for Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations
• ₱10 billion for Medical Assistance for Indigents Program
• ₱5 billion each for Technical Education Skills Development Authority and Commission on Higher Education
• ₱10 billion for Department of Education Programs.

 
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