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Aquino urges Duterte to give more subsidies to poor families as protection from higher taxes in 2018: But DOF, DSWD say they can’t

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Senator Bam Aquino on Thursday urged the government to ensure that financial assistance for the poor through the conditional cash transfer (CCT) program would be implemented by the time higher taxes, through the Tax Reform Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN), would be in effect by 2018.

He made the appeal as the government intends to implement the Tax Reform Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) bill in January 2018.

“Sana makita natin sa final version na magkasabay ang programang iyan para sa mahihirap. Kung may mangyayaring pagtaas ng presyo, dapat kasabay sa Enero ang tulong na ibibigay sa kanila,” Aquino said in a radio interview.

“Kailangan masiguro natin na may makukuhang suporta ang ating mga mahihirap na kababayan na magsisilbing pambalanse sa mga epekto ng panukalang ito, kabilang na ang pagtaas ng presyo ng bilihin,” he said.

Under the Senate version of financial assistance, poor families will be given P300 a month for three years.

Aquino worked for the retention of the financial assistance program in the Senate version of TRAIN to help poor Filipinos “bear the brunt of the expected increase in prices of basic commodities and services.”

However, the Department of Finance (DoF) said it could not implement the cash transfer program and the TRAIN at teh same although it promised to try.

Even the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) stated that they could not roll out the CCT program in January 2018, as they still need to finalize the database of families, among other preparations.