House member asks Senate to pass bill creating Boracay authority

Camarines Sur Representative Luis Raymund "LRay" Villafuerte on Saturday, September 25, sought the Senate's support behind a House-approved measure that would ensure the long-term rehabilitation, development and preservation of Boracay Island.

Camarines Sur Representative Lray Villafuerte

"I am appealing to our senators to act soon enough on their own version of the House-passed measure establishing the Boracay Island Development Authority (BIDA) as a government-owned and -controlled corporation (GOCC) that would oversee the rehabilitation of Boracay and ensure the sustainable development, conservation and protection of the natural resources of this isle renowned for its world-class white sand beaches," Villafuerte said in a statement.

Villafuerte issued this appeal to senators after the House passed by a 197-7-0 vote the House Bill No. 9826, which would establish the BIDA.

Villafuerte said the measure would fulfill President Duterte's call in his 2020 State of the Nation Address (SONA) for the Congress to pass a law that would oversee the sound management of the resort island to ensure its environmental sustainability.

The proposed BIDA “shall be developed into a self-sustaining, industrial, commercial, financial and investment center to generate employment opportunities and to attract and promote productive local and foreign investments, taking into account the protection and preservation of the natural resources and biodiversity of the Boracay Island.”

As three-term governor from 2004 to 2013, Villafuerte recalled "transforming" Camarines Sur into one of the Philippines’ top tourist destination, by promoting the Caramoan Islands as an adventure destination and the CamSur Watersports Complex.