Drilon opposes bill seeking to declare Tagaytay City day a special non-working holiday

Published January 25, 2022, 8:18 PM

by Hannah Torregoza 

Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon on Tuesday expressed his opposition to the proposed measure that seeks to declare June 21 of every year as a special non-working holiday in Tagaytay City.

Drilon said he strongly opposes the imposition of a special non-working holiday in Tagaytay City as it would deprive daily paid workers income because there’s no work.

The minority leader also pointed out that employers would be burdened by paying premium to its workers should they be required to work on a holiday.

According to Drilon, there should be a policy to rationalize the declaration of non-working holidays.

“We are looking at this at an objective view of our economy and the effects of non-working holidays on the loss of income of our daily paid workers and the additional burden in case our workers are required to work on the part of the employers, which will affect the competitiveness of these enterprises,” Drilon explained during the Senate’s deliberation on House Bill No. 5682.

Sen. Francis Tolentino, a former Tagaytay City mayor, on Tuesday sponsored House Bill No. 5682, or the proposed “Araw ng Lungsod ng Tagaytay” or “Charter Day of Tagaytay City.”

Tolentino defended the need to pass the bill saying the natives want to commemorate the foundation of Tagaytay City by declaring it a special non-working holiday because they want to have their own unique cultural identity heritage as a people.

Furthermore, Tolentino said passage of the bill into law would boost Tagaytay City’s pride as a locality: “Our unique identity has yet to be explained, why we are there, why we are created and we believed that a special holiday is deeply intertwined with our identity.”

But Sen. Pia Cayetano echoed Drilon’s sentiment saying the imposition of additional holidays “do have economic impact.”

Cayetano noted that many countries are already regulating their holidays because of their economic effects. When holiday bills were sponsored last year, she recalled also asking for the guidelines if a holiday should be declared working or non-working.

“It’s not meant to favor one town and not favor another town. The reason being in many countries in the world, they are really regulating their holidays, because it really has an economic effect,” Cayetano explained.

Sen. Sonny Angara, who chairs the Senate Finance Committee, also agreed with Drilon that there should be standards in declaring holidays.

Angara recalled that when he was chairperson of the Senate committee on local government in the 17th Congress, the panel came up with a set of standards that would be followed in approving bills declaring non-working holidays, but these were not pursued formally or approved by the plenary.